The Pixies! ‘Doolittle’ Lost Cities Tour

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They played the Doolittle album straight through, and though it’s a good album, a feeling of disappointment stirred in my mind when Kim announced they’d finished side A, and the show was half over. It was a show I really wanted to last for a very long time.
Looking around about halfway through, I was surprised by how tame the gathering was. It had all the types: there was the man who shouted “fight!” (despite that there was no fight) then apologized vigorously for spilling beer on my suit coat (a quick way to start a fight,) and tried to wipe a neighbor’s leather jacket dry with his sleeve. There was an angry young woman who tried to push our photographer down a flight of stairs, and a small handful of people dancing, but most of the crowd stood, waved their arms, and bobbed their heads, and I couldn’t help but feel that the band was somehow cheated by the lack of energy.

Once the album’s second side was played, the band exited the stage, and the crowd, like a sick man realizing death is near, was whipped into a lively frenzy previously unseen, stomping and whistling and shouting. The band let this go on for some time, so that I began to doubt they’d play an encore, but at length they did. A cloud of smoke I have to think was accidental obscured my view of anyone but Joey Santiago as the band finished the Doolittle album. The fans’ energy, which had now finally reached shirt-throwing levels, continued on through the second encore.

The concert ended with a too-soon “Goodnight.”

Speaking with the denizens of the concert hall, many of whom loved this band back before my arms were strong enough to hold a guitar, I came to a late realization. I listened to the fans go on about the music and how much more amazing it was to see the Pixies live than to sit back at home and listen to the albums. As they talked, I knew that these people did sit back many evenings and let the Pixies take them away from their troubles, making any love of the Pixies I harbored look like that of someone who vaguely liked the soundtrack of Fight Club.
The Pixies haven’t come out with a new song since the early nineties, and their sound isn’t new anymore, but like so many things old and powerful, their effect is deep, and sound of their rising and falling will be relevant for a very long time.

Photos by Jay Remy

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