Surfer Rosa

~ Release group by Pixies

Album

Release Format Tracks Date Country Label Catalog# Barcode
Official
Surfer Rosa 12" Vinyl 13 4AD CAD 803 5014436803017
Surfer Rosa (unknown) 14
Surfer Rosa 12" Vinyl 13 Grabaciones Accidentales GA-232
Surfer Rosa 12" Vinyl 13 4AD, Rough Trade (pre-2000) CAD 803, ROUGH US 38 023138003811
Surfer Rosa (unknown) 14
Surfer Rosa CD 14 Elektra Entertainment (renamed from Elektra 1989–2004; revived as Elektra 2009-06-01), 4AD 9 61295-2 075596129527
Surfer Rosa CD 13 4AD GAD 8030 CD 0652637803020
Surfer Rosa (180g reissue) 12" Vinyl 13 4AD CAD 803 652637080315
Surfer Rosa Hybrid SACD 13 Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab UDSACD 2032 821797203265

Relationships

associated singles/EPs: Gigantic
part of: The Phoenix: The Ten Landmark Albums That Made Indie Rock (number: 7)
Rolling Stone: 500 Greatest Albums of All Time: 2012 edition (number: 317)
Allmusic: http://www.allmusic.com/album/mw0000196022 [info]
Discogs: https://www.discogs.com/master/16731 [info]
Wikidata: Q571213 [info]
Wikipedia: en: Surfer Rosa [info]
other databases: http://musicmoz.org/Bands_and_Artists/P/Pixies/Discography/Surfer_Rosa/ [info]
http://www.musik-sammler.de/album/45408 [info]
https://rateyourmusic.com/release/album/pixies/surfer_rosa/ [info]
reviews: http://www.bbc.co.uk/music/reviews/dr3n [info]

CritiqueBrainz Reviews

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Though the specialist subjects of sun, surf and dubious sexual encounters of their debut ep (1987's Come On Pilgrim) had been retained, the overall mood masterminded a year later on their first full length record was altogether more unruly.

The Bostonian quartet, formed by guitarist and singer, Charles Michael Kitteridge Thompson IV - who for understandable reasons of alt rock credibility rechristened himself Black Francis - fell in with producer Steve Albini to create an album which though failing to chart at the time, had a telling influence on those picking up on the harsh, surly undertow of its (at times) frat-house humours.

Albini's production simultaneously amplifies The Pixies' endearing naivete and hectic energies, contrasting the polarities of throwaway trash (the tongue-in-cheek nerdy B-52s-type hero worship of "Tony's Theme") versus the snarling thrash of "Vamos" (a remade carry-over from Come On Pilgrim) which does much to lend the album its unsettling volatility.

Although "Gigantic" co-written and sung by bassist Kim Deal, shows they were more than capable of delivering hook-laden pop, it credibly opened up the kind of territory which Kurt Cobain and pals would later claim as their own.

Indeed such was its legacy, David Bowie covered "Cactus" on 2002's Heathen. Somewhat sanitised on that occasion, the original version here has a don't-go-there edge to it, and is one of the best songs ever to burst in and shine an FBI-style flashlight onto the darker, closeted recesses of obsessive love; 'Bloody your hands on a cactus tree/ Wipe it on your dress and send it to me.'

The left-field locations continue with "Bone Machine," the limelight veering between Francis' tale of parking lot molestation and a wonderful solo by their ingenious lead guitarist, Joey Santiago. Beginning like James Brown's "Sex Machine" being not so much taken as frog-marched to the bridge, it rapidly leaps into a revved-up blast recalling one of King Crimson's Robert Fripp's patented chordal solos; a genuinely thrilling 18 seconds that you never want to end. Though the follow-up, Doolittle (1989), ultimately widened their appeal, this is indispensable warts-and-all stuff that set the benchmark.