|1. Bone Machine|
|2. Break My Body|
|3. Something Against You|
|4. Broken Face|
|6. River Euphrates|
|7. Where Is My Mind?|
|9. Tony's Theme|
|10. Oh My Golly|
|11. You Fucking Die! I Said... [Hidden Track]|
|13. I'm Amazed|
|14. Brick Is Red|
This is just an amazing album. Messy, explosive, dirty, raw, brilliant -- those are just a few ways to describe it. Every track is great in its own way, but some standouts are "Bone Machine," "Where Is My Mind?", and the Kim Deal-penned "Gigantic," one of the best expressions of female sexuality I've ever heard. All of the instruments are excellent, particularly the drumming, and Black Francis' (Frank Black's) vocals are perfect. Some say the underproduction of Steve Albini is pretentious and unnecessary, but it's not -- it just means you have to listen a little harder, and that's a great thing.
I first heard this CD the day before yesterday, and I've listened to it six times since then -- that's how undeniably great it is. Do yourself a huge favor, and run out right away to buy this. If you like the kind of music that led you to be checking out Pixies albums on amazon, you'll love this album.
How do I pick a gem on an album that's so great from start to finish? I'm just not going to. If you're a fan of rock, be it "indie" or arena, you should own this record.
I wasn't sure what to think about the album on my first listen. Then as I listened more, I realized the genius in the simplicity of this album. The one thing I did notice was the production of the drums. They sound HUGE. Steve Albini was at his best with that.
Highlights are "Where is My Mind?" "Cactus" and "Bone Machine."
Every thumping, screaming, thrashing moment conjures images of bodies - usually bodies coming apart ("Break my body", "Broken face", "Bone machine"). But even what passes for romantic/love songs on the album are obsessed with physical detail, such as when Black Francis insists his lover prove her long-distance existence with physical evidence ("bloody your hands on the cactus tree/wipe it on your dress/and send it to me"). "Gigantic", which sports one of the best bass/guitar riffs *ever*, is obsessed not even with lust or sex, but with Kim Deal's swaggering celebration of her boyfriend's, ahem, "big big love". This exceedingly frank approach compliments their intense sound perfectly. The singing by both Deal and Francis is at the peak of their abilities, blending together like no male/female pair has sung since the Mamas and the Papas (if Mama Cass was into heavy metal). And, probably my favorite part, Black Francis produces probably the best screams I've ever heard throughout the album, particularly on "Bone Machine".
I could go on and on about Joey Santiago's remarkably innovative guitar playing and the fantastic drumming, but I'll leave it at this: Surfer Rosa is a crucial album for anyone who is interested in rock music made past 1989 or so. Most rock movements of the 90's, and therefore everything beyond, were deeply influenced by this album (most famously Kurt Cobain admitted to having "stolen" much of his sound from the band - stolen is a bit harsh, but somewhat accurate). No collection is complete without it.