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 Head Carrier - thoughts/impressions 2 months later

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T O P I C    R E V I E W
yarbles Posted - 11/16/2016 : 14:41:11
So Head Carrier has been out for awhile now, was wondering how everyone is liking it after the buzz of the new release has died down a bit. Do you think it's held up? Do you still find enjoyment in it, or have you moved on to something else?

Are there things in it that you've picked up on that you particularly like/dislike/find interesting?

I for one do still really like it, but I haven't listened to it for a week or two.... whereas when it first was released I was listening to it multiple times daily for weeks. I still like it, but I feel like in a way I've kinda moved on..... I need to go back and listen again and see how it holds up after a break.

But, there is one thing I've noticed on the song Head Carrier that I particularly like. The outro of the song is basically BF yelling HEAD CARRIER with Paz, then the second time he says it less-yelly, and the third he just speaks it, and the last time BF says nothing, we only hear a quiet Paz saying Head Carrier. That made me think of the life slowly leaving the head after it's been cut off.... the speech from the saint being loud at first, and then slowly diminishing until the life has fully left the head....

Anyone else have any thoughts/observations about HC and any/all of the songs/moments on it after having digested it for awhile?
35   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
natenate101 Posted - 03/17/2017 : 22:02:20
Still very enjoyable and an easy listen. Still think the energy of Um Chagga Lagga is my favorite piece of the album. Would like more of this tempo. BF just went too simplistic in terms of lyrics and song structure on many songs. Might As Well Gone and Bel Espirit are mediocre and too straightforward. Oona, Masher, Saints and Plaster are wonderful songs that I don't tire of. HC, Baals, Talent, Tenement are hit and miss. Sometimes I really get into them and others I don't pay much attention. Overall, a strong step forward after IC. Excited to see what's next but also kinda resigning myself to the fact we probably won't get the weird BF I desire. But hey, I'm happy they are still making quality music of course.
Arm Arm Arm Posted - 02/23/2017 : 05:37:02
While I enjoy Frank's lyrics it's the music that interests me the most and in this case, Talent has an infectious energy that makes me smile. Switching gears, I don't feel one way or the other about Paz.

There are some live clips where she sounds out of tune but she's all right on the album. I'm not blown away by her voice or anything, if they'd gone with a male bass player I wouldn't have cared at this point. But she does a good job and most likely has brought a fresh energy to the band that's necessary for new music going forward.


It's too bad that her big vocal turn is on a terrible song. It's bad enough the opening is some twisted version of Where is my mind, but the oooh-ohhhs are too much. The chords through the verses are fine but the higher pitched riff marred the whole thing. It's the Pixies at their most generic and dull, as if a big fan of the band tried writing something while heavily influenced and turned this out.

Perhaps the other parts of the song could be enjoyable on their own or as part of a new song but not with that riff and the oooh-oooh's bringing it down. Shit, the ending of the song is close to how they finish Where is My Mind in concert.

Too bad that the sentiment, of a nostalgic and seemingly sweet look back specifically at Kim is such an awful song.
picpic Posted - 02/22/2017 : 01:11:37
Not a fan of Talent. But it has more to do with the theme/lyrics than the music itself. Pong, Thalassocracy or Allison had pretty wild lyrics & ultimate catchphrases. Talent lyrics are kind of meh. Too common, maybe ? Less surreal. But the music itself is good.

___
"Service Unavailable"
Arm Arm Arm Posted - 02/20/2017 : 08:24:24
Sometimes the songs I like immediately and with such fervor end up wearing out their welcome too quickly; I'm hoping that's not the case with Talent. While he's written many a great fast song, something about this one feels new, perhaps just the way he keeps saying "talent" coupled with the chord progression. Whatever it is, I really love this one.

cheers
Stevio10 Posted - 02/20/2017 : 02:17:03
Talent is the best track on the record IMO - a blast of pure energy reminiscent of Alison, Thalassocracy or Pong
Sprite Posted - 02/19/2017 : 13:24:03
Listened to it again after maybe 6 weeks break while doing the dishes. Was bopping away instantly. It's a great little record, no doubt. Definitely feeling the Doolittle vibe but its the poppier end. Know almost all the lyrics word for word already.
Arm Arm Arm Posted - 02/17/2017 : 09:11:43
I've listened to it three times, and overall I prefer it to Indie Cindy, catchier songs, some good riffs and a few great tunes.

I still haven't looked at the track list but amongst the others I mentioned above, Classic Masher stood out this time and Talent is so amazing I don't want to wear it out. Chugga Lugga is pretty good too. The Where is my mind like song is still bad; just wanted it to stop.

I like the blend of the instruments, particularly Dave's drums, no opinion on the loudness element since I've only heard it on car speakers. There's some nice guitar lines as well from Joey.

To my mind, Indie Cindy has songs that tried for something different, which I respect but didn't much enjoy listening to, Head Carrier thus far seems more traditional but the songs are better.

Neither one is as good as the original albums but I just take them for what they are now, or how they seem to me...which is more like a Frank Black solo album with his old bandmates resulting in an all right or slightly below average record and a good one.

I suppose more listens could change my perspective, but for now I enjoy the new album feeling, not knowing what song is going to come next and strectching that out as long as I can.

cheers
Arm Arm Arm Posted - 01/24/2017 : 10:49:43
One listen in the car, too soon to tell other than an early impression, don't really know the song titles yet:

I liked Chugga Lugga, Talent and really disliked the Where is My Mind derivative. Why would they do that?
Arm Arm Arm Posted - 12/29/2016 : 12:33:13
I received it for Christmas.

I may listen to it on New Years Eve when I drive to meet my friend-with-benefits. It's either that or maybe some Queens of the Stone Age.

Happy New Year!
peter radiator Posted - 12/23/2016 : 07:04:29
quote:
Originally posted by Idalgo Clandestino

The good thing about HC is that it makes IC sound really good!




hahahahahahahaha

I like both albums quite a bit, but I have to agree with you, Idalgo.

To me, despite the "transitional" nature of IC, I feel Gil's "thought experiment" was an unqualified success: it really does sound like what I can imagine the "next" Pixies album after TLM could have sounded like.

If I did not know that Kim Deal had left the band early in the sessions and had her bass tracks wiped, I would likely not have noticed any substantial "lack" in the final product.

Some (including perhaps FBF, Dave and Joey) may view HC as a "return to form" for the band after IC.

I think HC is a fine and very enjoyable album. A lot of it reminds me a great deal of what the Pixies were doing on their way to splitting up initially. Even more of it reminds me of what FBF has accomplished in the years since the band originally ceased to be.

However, IC reminds me of what the Pixies had become (and had achieved) by the time they took that long, long break.

It's a HUGE shame that, in concert at least, they seem to have relegated 95% of IC's songs to the garbage heap.

It's a real bummer to not get to hear what tunes like "What Goes Boom," "Jaime Bravo," "Blue-Eyed Hexe" and "Ring the Bell" might have morphed into over time.

I hope they reconsider at some point and work them up for even occasional inclusion into their live shows.


--

"Real music is out there and real people are making it." ~ Webb Wilder
Idalgo Clandestino Posted - 12/22/2016 : 22:20:15
The good thing about HC is that it makes IC sound really good!

----------------------------------
you probably thought i'm a shy guy
Bedbug Posted - 12/20/2016 : 17:20:01
After a few months of listening to it I'm still saying it's a great piece of that guy's music. I would love one of these every year.

I still consider the last Pixies album (that sound) to be the first half of Bossanova. I'd say HC ranks somewhere in the middle of BF solo stuff, below Bluefinger but above NSE.

Also I always disliked the order of the songs on IC, but I like HC's order just fine.
Arm Arm Arm Posted - 12/12/2016 : 08:32:58
Ha! You're closer to listening to it than I am. Perhaps it'll be a Christmas present.

cheers
Carl Posted - 12/10/2016 : 14:15:27
I only got the CD the other week and I still haven't sat down and listened to the bloody thing!
Stevio10 Posted - 12/08/2016 : 22:14:38
Make Believe (no BF/Kim vocals)
picpic Posted - 12/07/2016 : 22:06:50
Where is my mind... it just does not sound like any other Pixies song at all.

___
"Service Unavailable"
Bedbug Posted - 12/07/2016 : 12:17:18
Gigantic
sdon Posted - 12/07/2016 : 11:45:00
quote:
Originally posted by Bedbug

Unless it's already been done, I think a thread on:

"What is the least Pixies sounding Pixies song of the 1.0 era?"

would be an interesting discussion.



Silver, Here Comes Your Man, Navajo Know

--
"Aristophanes! (gong sounds)"
Bedbug Posted - 12/07/2016 : 09:19:31
Yeah!
:-)
pot Posted - 12/07/2016 : 08:39:49
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZBAijg5Betw
Bedbug Posted - 12/07/2016 : 07:51:29
Unless it's already been done, I think a thread on:

"What is the least Pixies sounding Pixies song of the 1.0 era?"

would be an interesting discussion.
Bedbug Posted - 12/07/2016 : 07:05:09
quote:
Originally posted by billgoodman

Listened to it again the last couple of days
After the Amsterdam gig

This is pretty nifty record, people

Disclaimer: No Kim, no relevance, no youthful energy, nothing you haven't heard before

Still

Fine, fine lyrics, great songs, solid playing, great new bass player, lovely harmonies, great drumming

I'm a sucker for Frank's writing and this one record is classic Frank



---------------------------
BF: Mag ik Engels spreken?



Agree with this. It doesn't seem like many people are saying HC is a bad album, as opposed to IC which a lot of people have called "bad."

The rub seems to be whether or not HC is a good Pixies album, or merely a good something else.
picpic Posted - 12/07/2016 : 03:48:51
Dave said in multiple interviews that the classic Pixies albums were complicated to make because he had to record them super fast and didn't have much time to rehearse. According to him Indie & Head sessions were great because he had plenty of time to learn his parts and rehearse as much as he wanted to.

Maybe he's just more creative when he works in a rush ?

___
"Service Unavailable"
vilainde Posted - 12/07/2016 : 03:33:51
quote:
Originally posted by picpic

quote:
Originally posted by billgoodman
Fine, fine lyrics, great songs, solid playing, great new bass player, lovely harmonies, great drumming

I'm a sucker for Frank's writing and this one record is classic Frank


Really ? I think there are fantastic melodies et super-catchy songs on this record, but I think the Achilles' heel of the album are probably the lyrics & the very standard drumming.

My theory is that Dave cannot play crazy drums on every single song on a setlist. And Indie/Head are more laid-back when it comes to drums. So he can rest a little between the earlier songs.



Same here. I like the album a lot but I'm very disappointed in the drums parts. A drum machine would have done the same.
Hell I hope he doesn't read the forum...

Denis
picpic Posted - 12/07/2016 : 02:27:26
quote:
Originally posted by billgoodman
Fine, fine lyrics, great songs, solid playing, great new bass player, lovely harmonies, great drumming

I'm a sucker for Frank's writing and this one record is classic Frank


Really ? I think there are fantastic melodies et super-catchy songs on this record, but I think the Achilles' heel of the album are probably the lyrics & the very standard drumming.

My theory is that Dave cannot play crazy drums on every single song on a setlist. And Indie/Head are more laid-back when it comes to drums. So he can rest a little between the earlier songs.

___
"Service Unavailable"
OLDMANOTY Posted - 12/06/2016 : 12:41:00
I've not listened to it for a while now, dunno why as I couldn't get enough of it at first. I'm sure it'll have matured like a fine cheese* when I return to it. That last happened with Bluefinger: got a bit tired of it after months of repeated plays, left it for a while, and when I went back it blew me away.

*Maybe I should have said wine. Actually no I was right first time - cheese; Roquefort, Gorgonzola maybe. When I stopped listening maybe it was getting a bit Edam.
billgoodman Posted - 12/06/2016 : 08:57:30
Listened to it again the last couple of days
After the Amsterdam gig

This is pretty nifty record, people

Disclaimer: No Kim, no relevance, no youthful energy, nothing you haven't heard before

Still

Fine, fine lyrics, great songs, solid playing, great new bass player, lovely harmonies, great drumming

I'm a sucker for Frank's writing and this one record is classic Frank



---------------------------
BF: Mag ik Engels spreken?
Joey Joe Jo Jr. Chabadoo Posted - 11/21/2016 : 17:58:10
Some songs or parts of them are frequently played in my mind, sung a capella or whistled. My wife responds. Digging the Pixies in 2016 is as hard as digging yourself in a mirror dressed as a woman when you're 37. Quite enjoyable when possible on stage though...

++++
Fitzy Posted - 11/21/2016 : 12:09:25
quote:
Originally posted by sdon

quote:
Originally posted by Fitzy

Bel Esprit (still struggling with this one, love love the "that's the way of this man" part, but the rest of the song, meh)




Exact contrary for me
I find Bel Esprit exceptional during the verses and the strength of the melodic intertwine of voices, then I feel let down by the repetitive and simplistic chorus ;)

--
"Aristophanes! (gong sounds)"



I get what you are saying, and kind of agree with you, but I catch myself humming that part more times than I can count. And Joey is doing that downward lick with his guitar. Earworm stuff, I guess.

The melodic intertwine of voices you mention, I also like that part, but it sounds to me a bit out of place on the album, an alt-country vibe maybe?

It's the Bell Esprit/Chimpanzee part that I really can't get into, though.
sdon Posted - 11/20/2016 : 11:58:25
quote:
Originally posted by Fitzy

Bel Esprit (still struggling with this one, love love the "that's the way of this man" part, but the rest of the song, meh)




Exact contrary for me
I find Bel Esprit exceptional during the verses and the strength of the melodic intertwine of voices, then I feel let down by the repetitive and simplistic chorus ;)

--
"Aristophanes! (gong sounds)"
sdon Posted - 11/20/2016 : 11:54:51
quote:
Originally posted by McDutchie

quote:
Originally posted by picpic

Hard for me to get over the horrendous production.
I find that turning the bass frequencies well down on the equalizer helps quite a bit.



Same
I can't listen to it otherwise

--
"Aristophanes! (gong sounds)"
McDutchie Posted - 11/20/2016 : 05:10:07
quote:
Originally posted by picpic

Hard for me to get over the horrendous production.
I find that turning the bass frequencies well down on the equalizer helps quite a bit.
picpic Posted - 11/20/2016 : 04:41:13
I must say I haven't listened to the record in a month or so. I don't really feel the urge to listen to it again for now. Hard for me to get over the horrendous production. I really, really tried. Oona & Saints are on my playlist, though. I think I'll let a few months pass and try again.

___
"Service Unavailable"
Troubles A Foot Posted - 11/19/2016 : 20:15:22
I am just baffled so many people around here don't like Talent. For me it was easily the best song on my first few listens, the most fun, the most catchy, the most interesting musically. It was the first song to get in my head and the first one I played for my friends and girlfriend when telling them about the new Pixies album. It's the song that sounded like the band and Frank were having the most fun. Why on earth is it so disliked around here?!
Arm Arm Arm Posted - 11/19/2016 : 16:37:37
quote:
Originally posted by Fitzy

I still remember something he said about Kristin Hersh a couple of years ago, something about how she's a "lifer", someone who is unable to function without writing songs and releasing albums. I've always thought of FB as being kind of the same, maybe because we were lucky enough to hear a new album or more every year when he was in the Catholics. Now I'm not so sure of it.

So, do you guys see Frank continuing to create music in some form or another for many years to come or are we getting the last few albums from the man?





I could be wrong but my impression is he'll keep writing and recording music. Perhaps things move a bit slower, relative to the Catholics/solo material because of the nature of the collaboration; I've a feeling Joey and Dave have a bit of veto power other people he's worked with lacked.

Since he is currently putting his energy towards Pixies albums, it could be the wonderfully prolific tempo we're used to will be a bit slowed. But that's by his standard, hasn't it only been a couple years since Indy Cindy?

My point is, while it's possible Frank could retire, in which case I'd still happily marvel at the amount of great music he created, I think he'll be releasing music going forward, with the Pixies and possibly on his own as well.

cheers

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