You know the age old story. Band garners success, "sells out," goes "mainstream," collects a following of teenage worshippers from MTV, loses credibility, and throws creativity out the window, etc. Well, we say screw that. Those dinosaur-aged ideas have long expired. Case and point, Vampire Weekend. It's always delightful when a hugely hyped band not only meets, but exceeds our expectations. Not really expecting much more than what Contra offers, we weren't looking for musical genius, but boy did we get some.
It feels like it was just yesterday when the festival touring circuit was over. Well, the winter hibernation is over, and with festivals like SXSW, Coachella, Sasquatch and Bonnaroo just around the corner, there are some big music decisions to make on the home front. Here are our March and April suggestions.
Quasi, The Independent, 3/10: These Portland staples have been touring and impressing fans since '93. Over the years, they've collectively toured and/or recorded with Sleater-Kinney, Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks, Built to Spill, Bright Eyes, and many others.
The Pixies opened up their first of a three-night stint at The Fox with (not surprisingly) the infamous video that "Debaser" was based off of called Un Chien Andalou - it entails a woman's eye being slit open by a razor among other adult themes (when the directors are Luis Bunuel and Salvador Dali you can't really be that shocked). After a grand entrance involving what can only be described as light up crepe balls on hydraulics and a heavy smoke machine, the opening song was really the shocker. Having "Dancing The Manta Ray" as the first in the set list really set the tone for the entire show.
The Pixies are largely considered one of the most influential bands in indie history. Their long and turbulent ride as a band ended abruptly (although not surprisingly) in 1993 and remained on hiatus until 2004. Celebrating the 20-year anniversary of their iconic release, Doolittle, this weekend, they've decided to play it in its entirety not one, not two, but three straight nights at the equally-beloved venue in Oakland, The Fox.