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Pixies at the BBC (1998) Best of, Live

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 9 1999)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Best of, Live
  • Label: 4AD
  • ASIN: B00000B9DL
  • In-Print Editions: Audio CD
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #64,298 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Product Description

Product Description

Pixies at the BBC (1998) - Originally released in 1998, this collection documents the Pixies at their most surreal, scary, dissonant and powerful. Recorded live-on-the-air between 1988 and 1991, this disc is a wonderful complement to any of the Pixies catalogue albums.

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Released shortly after the Pixies' legacy had been reappraised with the Death To The Pixies boxset, Pixies At The BBC offers a number of alternative takes and a few rarities culled from radio sessions between 1988 and 1991. Most interesting are the rarities: a potent cover version of The Beatles' "Wild Honey Pie" is brief, but bruising, and a take on "In Heaven (Lady in the Radiator Song)" drawn from the score to David Lynch's horrific dystopia Eraserhead gives Black Francis a chance to howl like seldom before. Other than these, there's few superior takes of songs, but there's a lovely acoustic reading of "Wave Of Mutilation", and the obligatory Great Lost B-side in "Manta Ray". Get the albums first, though. --Louis Pattison

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
I neglected getting this disk for quite some time. I figured I already had the original recordings of every song on here... When I finally got it, I was blown away. There are superb versions of many of the Pixies' classic songs. The haunting renditions of 'Caribou' and 'Is She Weird' are among my favorites. 'Wave of Mutilation' and 'Monkey Gone to Heaven' surpass the album versions. I'd like to have seen 'Gigantic' and 'Here Comes Your Man' on here, but now I'm quibbling... Very highly reccommended.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0xa66afe34) out of 5 stars 33 reviews
20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa690aec4) out of 5 stars Live? Well, sort of... Aug. 21 2005
By RockerDad - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
This is listed here as a 'live' album. This should be clarified for potential buyers: this is not the 'live' album you are hoping/looking for. This is a collection of songs by the Pixies recorded at BBC Studios in the UK over the course of several years. Yes, the tracks appear to have been recorded live (most likely in one take), but otherwise any resemblance to a live album ends there. And besides, nowhere on the cd does ever use the actual word 'Live'. With that clarified, let's move on.

While some Pixies fans balk at this album, I actually find it to be pretty essential-easily up there with their collection of B-Sides, and in my opinion, up there with Bossanova (their weakest album). Pixies at the BBC offers a view of the band that cuts to the bone: no studio gimmicks, up front vocals, solid mixing of the rhythm section, and an incredible spread of songs from every album (minus Surfer Rosa), plus 2 outstanding covers (of The Beatles and David Lynch, no less-Pixies were the masters at choosing the best cover material ever).

Many songs here are somewhat stripped down (possibly causing much of the fuss with hardcore Pixies fans) here. 'Is She Weird' for example dispenses with any lead guitar, providing the song with even more immediacy. 'Monkey Gone to Heaven' seems more primal performed without the string section. 'Manta Ray', always a personal favorite of mine (an outtake from Doolittle), shines so pristine here, it's too bad they didn't squeeze it onto Doolittle. And 'There Goes My Gun' tears out of the speakers like a rocket-seeming more like a companion song to 'River Euphrates' and 'Something Against You' from Surfer Rosa than anything off Doolittle. It's actually quite interesting to see how the band's sound was shaped in the studio to a large degree.

My favorite song here, though, has to be '(In Heaven)'. A fan of surreal cinema (also check the lyrics to Debaser), Frank/Black/Francis loved Eraserhead, and so, the Pixies covered this song penned by David Lynch. It's so utterly raw, terrifying, and simple, that for me, it's one of the band's defining moments. And the shock of feedback/guitar hitting the floor at the end perfectly finishes it all off.

Certainly this is not a typical Pixies 'album', and it is far from perfect (no Surfer Rosa tracks-come on!!!), yet somehow, as much as any other Pixies release (with the exception of the truly live 2nd disc from the Death to the Pixies compilation-an absolutely stunning testament to the greatness of this band), Pixies at the BBC captures their essence: exciting, raw, odd, adventurous, funny, and, yes, cool.

While it's no Surfer Rosa or Doolittle (I mean, come on, what is?!)-this is as good of a place as any to discover the most exciting and creative rock band to emerge since the 1960's.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa6ca40d8) out of 5 stars In heaven, everything is fine July 16 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I bought this CD grimacing, I needed to own (In Heaven)and Wild Honey Pie because they are such brilliant renditions, but i had to shell out 15 bucks for it. I was surprised it was worth it, hearing new versions of all these songs was very refreshing. Punked up versions of There Goes My Gun and Dead along side the laid back spine tingling version of Monkey Gone to Heaven (I love how he screams God is 7 in this version). I think the version of Caribou is better just because his scream is more intense during "REPENT." It contains the "early" version of Down to the Well and of course, the UK Surf of Mutilation. Overall, not all these versions are better, but they all are certainly interesting. My only pet peeve is that there are 6 or 7 other BBC versions of songs NOT included on this disc (Tame, Motorway to Roswell, ext). That really annoys me....i don't want to dig up a copy of Rough Diamonds for 50 bucks to get those extra songs, why couldn't they just inlude them in this??
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa6803768) out of 5 stars 13 great songs, 2 covers, a treat for the Pixies lover March 2 2002
By Jay Silver - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
All credit to the mighty Pixies - they never did anything expected. Instead of releasing a "Greatest Hits Live" package, they've treated their devoted following to a selection of songs from the John Peel (seminal British DJ) BBC sessions. Yes, there is no 'Debaser', no 'Here Comes Your Man', no 'Where is my Mind?', but don't let the track listing put you off. The live interpretations of some of the album tracks are astonishing; 'There Goes My Gun' is transformed from one of "Doolittle"'s most undistinguished songs into a rollicking punkabilly bounce, whilst the opposite goes for 'Wave of Mutilation', with the gentle surf-guitars and Frank Black's caressing vocals contrasting with the "Doolittle" pop-punk version. Also interesting is the half-finished version of 'Dead', which I believe has a lot more punch than the album version, and the two curious covers (a deranged 'Wild Honey Pie' and the terrifying 'In Heaven' from "Eraserhead"... I defy anyone not to be startled by the ending of the latter). True, some tracks are almost identical to album versions, but when they're as strong as 'Letter to Memphis' and 'Monkey Gone to Heaven' you don't seem to care. But the highlight of this great set must be the phenomenal 'Levitate Me', where the bass heavy production and forceful backing vocals turn the (still excellent) 'Come on Pilgrim' closer into something towering, beautiful and epic. Worth the price of the CD alone? Probably not, but there's 14 other great tracks, so nothing to lose.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa690ac00) out of 5 stars Pixies at their best Feb. 22 2004
By Patrick E. Orlob - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I neglected getting this disk for quite some time. I figured I already had the original recordings of every song on here... When I finally got it, I was blown away. There are superb versions of many of the Pixies' classic songs. The haunting renditions of 'Caribou' and 'Is She Weird' are among my favorites. 'Wave of Mutilation' and 'Monkey Gone to Heaven' surpass the album versions. I'd like to have seen 'Gigantic' and 'Here Comes Your Man' on here, but now I'm quibbling... Very highly reccommended.
By Adrian L Casias - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Awesome album that features a new twist on some of my older favorite Pixie's songs. I'm not going to make a critical critique of the album but will say I enjoy its content and addition to my Pixies collection which features just about anything they've produced.



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