Boston alt-rock icons, Pixies may never have received the mass mainstream airplay that some of their counterparts enjoyed in the 90s, but that didn’t stop them from becoming one of the most influential bands of all time.
Their songs, built on jagged guitars, melodic riffs, sugary harmonies and loud-soft arrangements, accentuated by walls of distortion, more or less drew a blueprint for the next decade of rock. Their sound, equally catchy and challenging, virtually smacking you in the face with noise you want to hum along to, would influence countless up-and-coming artists of the era, including Nirvana, Radiohead, the Smashing Pumpkins, Weezer and many more.
So, we’re revisiting the band’s performance of Monkey Gone To Heaven from their 1989 LP Doolittle, at the U.K.’s iconic Brixton Academy in 1991 for a rousing reminder of where the imminent alt-rock-grunge explosion took spark! Watch below.
Pixies | 'Monkey Gone to Heaven' [Live at Brixton, 1991]
In 1994, when reflecting on writing the monolithic smash Smells Like Teen Spirit, Kurt Cobain admitted that he was basically trying to emulate the sound of the Pixies.
“I was trying to write the ultimate pop song,” Cobain said. “I was basically trying to rip off the Pixies. I have to admit it. When I heard the Pixies for the first time, I connected with that band so heavily that I should have been in that band—or at least a Pixies cover band. We used their sense of dynamics, being soft and quiet and then loud and hard.”
“I found [the Pixies] just about the most compelling music outside of Sonic Youth in the entire 1980s,” Bowie told Rolling Stone at the time. “I always thought there was a psychotic Beatles in them.”
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