Written by Robert B. Johnson (@RobertSatellite on Twitter)
ImageStill Going Strong

These days, it’s rare to catch a popular act from yesteryear. Many bands have broken up, gotten old, or simply moved on from music. Thankfully, a handful of groups still put out fresh tunes and tour to this day, giving the current generation of fans a glimpse into the past. On February 27, I had the opportunity to catch one of those acts at Houston’s Bayou Music Center.

Originally formed in 1986, The Pixies dissolved by 1993. By 2004, the band was back together. Fast-forward to 2014, fresh off the release of a new EP, The Pixies are on the road again. Perhaps best known for Fight Club (the movie) hit “Where Is My Mind?,” The Pixies represent a genre of music a genre of music that came before it’s time. Yet, unlike many of their contemporaries, The Pixies can still sell out arenas and move a crowd to this day. When The Pixies rolled through Houston, that’s exactly what they did.

A Lasting Appeal

A sea of people filled the balcony and floor. Of the many fans in attendance, many were holdovers from the band’s early days. Despite the abundance of old school fans, younger fans also had a strong presence at the show, highlighting the band’s lasting appeal across generations.

More Than Your Money’s Worth

Just after 9:15PM, the four members of The Pixies took center stage to wave to the audience. Thereafter, it was nothing but business. Without much in the way of breaks, the band cruised through a thirty-three song setlist. For fans hoping to hear as much live content as possible, The Pixies gave them more than their money’s worth. Fans looking for a more personal touch may have left wanting something more.

ImageOpting for a show without banter, stories, or jokes between songs, The Pixies made room for a very strong assortment of their impressive catalog of songs. After all, such an arrangement fits more appropriately with the band’s complexion. The Pixies let the music speak for itself, allowing the emotion in the arena to develop organically through the performance.

In the end, the fans were touched, singing along with frontman Black Francis, feeling the lead of Joey Santiago, and moving to the beat of David Lovering. Theatrics weren’t necessary.

Organic & Unrefined

The Pixies won’t ever be accused of being an over-produced live act. In fact, it’s just the opposite. The live guitars are filled with distortion. The gravely vocals are complimented with thick reverb. The drum licks are heavy and unforgiving. Collectively, it all forges the sound of The Pixies. There are no backing tracks. There are no ambient synths to level the sound. Raw and unapologetic, the The Pixies’ live performance is a throwback to a time before digital production and overdubs. For those who seek something classic and unrefined, The Pixies may have the live performance you crave.

Bone Machine
Wave of Mutilation
River Euphrates
Something Against You
Mr. Grieves
Gouge Away
The Sad Punk
Brick Is Red
Monkey Gone to Heaven
Blue Eyed Hexe
Crackity Jones
Isla de Encanta
What Goes Boom
I’ve Been Tired
Planet of Sound
Silver Snail
Where Is My Mind?
In Heaven (Lady in the Radiator Song)
Andro Queen
Nimrod’s Son
The Holiday Song

Here Comes Your Man
La La Love You

Contact Robert at robert@starsandsatellites.com or @RobertSatellite on Twitter