Pixies: Beneath the Eyrie (Infectious/BMG) | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Monday, March 4th, 2024  


Beneath the Eyrie


Sep 12, 2019 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

Pixies’ post-reformation releases have been burdened with a problem. There is no way that the band can capture their epoch-defining original four albums (and one mini-album). How could they? The world is different, they are different, heck, music is different!

The previous LPs, 2014’s Indie Cindy and 2016’s Head Carrier, sounded like a band trying to rediscover how to be Pixies and not quite getting there. These albums were still great, but this is Pixies and people expect so much more.

Seventh album Beneath the Eyrie is a legendary band shedding the baggage and just being themselves, framing their past successes differently. What made the band’s initial run so enthralling was the subtle changes made to the sound from Surfer Rosa‘s fractured alt-rock, to the surf stylings of Bossanova and the polished bombast of Trompe le Monde.

Beneath the Eyrie turns the Pixies legacy into stadium-ready tunes, without losing sight of their dark charm. This is the first release since they got back together that can be legitimately considered a continuation of their best work, taking off where Trompe le Monde left off.

With new bassist (well not “new” but try telling that to fans) Paz Lenchantin now, clearly, an established part of the writing process you can hear her fresh input all over the album, taking elements from her varied career and merging them in to the classic Pixies sound.

Opener “In the Arms of Mrs. Mark of Cain” is a stadium-goth banger that The Cure would be proud of, while single “On Graveyard Hill” lifts Joey Santiago’s trademark guitar scrawl into a huge rifftastic slice of radio rock.

“This is My Fate” is a sinister waltz with quirky percussion, again taking the classic guitar sound into new realms. “Ready for Love” is a twisted ode to love reframing the classic West Coast singer/songwriter sound in Pixies’ image. “Bird of Prey” does the same with rockabilly.

Everything we want from Pixies is present, but this is not the band they were, this is the sound of the band as they are now and what they could become, comfortable in their position as legends. Lamenting the loss of their past is to do the band, and this album, a disservice.

Beneath the Eyrie is Pixies being great again on their own terms. (www.pixiesmusic.com)

Author rating: 7.5/10

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