It’s been almost two years since our last round of arguing about the business practices of famously reunion-happy pioneering alt-rock band The Pixies, and honestly, you guys? I was really starting to miss it. It’s fortunate, then, that sitting in my inbox this morning was an email announcing that the band has announced a new round of tour dates, at which they’ll be playing their landmark sophomore album, Doolittle, in its entirety. If this sounds familiar, well, it should: they started this all the way back in 2009, in celebration of the album’s 20th anniversary. Since then, they’ve taken the show all over the world—including multiple stints in the U.S., tours of Canada, Europe and even Australia.
Seems like this would be a reasonable point at which to call it quits, yes? To go home and maybe consider writing some new material together, or at the very least to attempt cashing in on our nostalgia for a different album? No way, not when there are at least 17 secondary markets to hit. On October 27, the Pixies will take the stage at the Wellmont Theatre in Montclair, New Jersey, and then the following night at the Asbury Park Convention Hall in Asbury Park. By 2013 or so, one imagines they’ll be playing Arlene’s Grocery and VFW halls on Long Island.
Frank Black has already said, in no uncertain terms, that this has very little to do with the art, or even with honoring the art or giving a new generation of kids a chance to see it performed live. It has only to do with the money, with making up for the fact that being in an “influential” band doesn’t necessarily pay particularly well the first time around. Which is fine, really: no one begrudges anyone the high-paying victory lap if it’s there for the taking. You’ve got to wonder, though, when enough will be enough. All you can do is hope it’ll be before it starts to feel so gross and cold and calculated that you can no longer listen to the very album they’re supposed to be celebrating. Or any of their others, for that matter.