My Top 1000 Songs #292: Planet Of Sound

[I've been writing up my Top 1000 songs on a daily basis--you can see them all in descending order by hitting the All My Favorite Songs tag.]

I assume that, pressed to pick a few favorite Pixies songs, most of us tend to lean heavily on the earlier albums. But I also have great love for "Planet Of Sound," off their fourth and final album (not counting those from the later post-Kim-Deal-era releases), 1991's Trompe Le Monde. The song is just absolutely... well, monstrous. Loud and braying and chaotic and an absolute shitshow of sonic wallop--yet still, at heart, rooted to a killer riff that keeps the whole thing from tearing itself apart.

As is the band's forte, the sonic dynamics are thrilling. While the opening moments are hardly subdued, there is some restraint... a thumping bass, periodic outbursts of the guitar skronk getting ready to be unleashed (later repurposed in Radiohead's "Creep"), Frank Black in understated spoken-word mode with some odd warble. And then the train doesn't just go off the rails; it simply explodes in your face. When it's over, I just need to catch my breath.

Live in 1991:
Stripped-down & almost unplugged, the post-reunion band live in the studio in 2015: