The Pixies at The Santa Fe Center (Santa Fe, NM) 11/16: Review

Kurt Cobain of Nirvana: {On writing “Smells Like Teen Spirit”} “I was trying to write the ultimate pop song. 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.”

It is rare that we venture outside of Denver, or the state of Colorado for that matter, to cover a show.  Back in July we wrote a short blurb about The Pixies going on tour, making stops in rather obscure cities across the country hence the name Doolittle: The Lost Cities Tour.  We figured Santa Fe, New Mexico was only about a 5-6 hour drive and I had never seen the Pixies, who I consider one of my top three bands.  So off we were to Santa Fe to catch the Pixies.  The band launched the Doolittle Tour which was a reunion tour (Celebrating the 20th anniversary of the album), this particular leg of the tour is hitting cities never visited by the band or have maybe played once.  Doolittle is the band’s second album and today is considered one of the greatest albums ever produced by many.  

The concept for the set was pretty simple as they played the entire Doolittle album from start to finish.  They opened up with four b-sides starting things off with Dancing The Manta Ray, Weird At My School, Bailey’s Walk, and Manta Ray.  It is safe to say these are songs only true diehard Pixies fans would even know.  Next was one of their more popular songs Debaser then following the order of the album.  The production for this tour was unlike any of their previous tours incorporating a huge LED projected screen personalizing individual songs. During La La Love You the screen showed cartoon-ish images of hearts moving along to the beat of the song.  During Hey the images of the lyrics were portrayed in an animation style mimicking to the vocals Black Francis was belting out.

Frank Black of The Pixies (photo credit Robert Castro)

Kim Deal of The Pixies (photo credit Robert Castro)
The band ended with two encores saving their best for last as they dazzled the crowd with Broken Face, Vamos, Where Is My Mind (made popular by David Fincher’s memorable building collapse scene in Fight Club), and Gigantic which had the sold out venue singing every word.  The night got started with openers Imaginary Cities hailing from Winnipeg, Canada.  Truly talented in every sense, the band had the crowd swaying with their infectious energy and pop-rock vintage style,  led by the duo of Rusty Matyas and Marti Sarbit. It was the perfect compliment for The Pixies.

Dave Lovering of The Pixies (photo credit Robert Castro)

Joey Santiago of The Pixies (photo credit Robert Castro)