The Pixies would never have let their hearts slip so precipitously sleeve-ward. Their frenzy wasn't meant to focus attention on the suffering soul, but to conceal a carefully wrought architecture—a set of formal devices that allowed the band to communicate emotional intensity while guarding it from mawkishness or self-pity. Black, however, managed something more on his own: He found a way to combine formal dexterity with emotional directness and to convey his heartfelt passion for rock 'n' roll itself. And if he manages to carry that new-found conviction into the Pixies' reunion, we just might see a better band than the original Pixies ever got to be.
TODAY IN SLATE
Smash and Grab
Will competitive Senate contests in Kansas and South Dakota lead to more late-breaking races in future elections?
Stop Panicking. America Is Now in Very Good Shape to Respond to the Ebola Crisis.
The 2014 Kansas City Royals Show the Value of Building a Mediocre Baseball Team
The GOP Won’t Win Any Black Votes With Its New “Willie Horton” Ad
Sleater-Kinney Was Once America’s Best Rock Band
Can it be again?
Forget Oculus Rift
This $25 cardboard box turns your phone into an incredibly fun virtual reality experience.