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Pixies | photo by Jamie Stow for WXPN

A week out from the release of their seventh studio album Beneath the Eyrie, rock icons Pixies returned to the World Cafe Live stage to give a sold-out crowd an early listen to five song from the record, plus a few old favorites. 

Opening with the nervy fray of “On Graveyard Hill,” the Free at Noon performance gave a sense of Eyrie‘s range and dynamics, from “Catfish Kate” — where surreal nursery rhyme lyrics got a huge boost in live energy care of Joey Santiago’s searing guitar lead and Paz Lenchantin’s urgent harmony vocals — to “Bird of Prey” — where Lenchantin trades vocals with frontperson and songwriter Black Francis.

“This Is My Fate” was a cinematic brooder, where the minor key guitar chords dwelled in the atmospheres of a Morricone western score, with David Lovering adding drum block percussion accents on the refrain. “Death Horizon” finds Black Francis setting the scene asleep on the beach at Waikiki, combining crunchy acoustic guitar with rhythmic urgency for maximum Surfer Rosa vibes.

The new jams were politely received, but the loudest applause came for Pixies dip into their back catalog for a trifecta of classics — “Bone Machine,” “Gouge Away” and “Debaser” — that rocked the set to a close.

Check out a gallery of photos from Pixies’ Free at Noon concert below. Beneath the Eyrie is out next Friday, September 13th, on BMG Records.

Setlist
On Graveyard Hill
Catfish Kate
This Is My Fate
Death Horizon
Bird of Prey
Bone Machine
Gouge Away
Debaser

Encore:
Cain

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