The Pixies: Black Francis (vocals, guitar); Kim Deal (vocals, slide guitar, bass); David Lovering (vocals, bass, drums); Joey Santiago (guitar).
Additional personnel: Karen Karlsrud, Corine Metter (violin); Arthur Fiacco, Ann Rorich (cello).
Recorded at Downtown Recorders, Boston, Massachusetts.
From the opening bars of DOOLITTLE, the Pixies' brilliant duality comes into focus. Chiming guitar streaks waft over an AOR-ready riff, while vocals bark out references to a deliberately obscure culture. "Debaser," for instance, finds singer/songwriter Black Francis alluding to "Chien Andalou," Spanish director Luis Bunuel's surrealist film renowned for a scene where an eyeball is sliced.
The Pixies' calling card is their calculated sonic mayhem. Francis and bass player Kim Deal weave vocal harmonies of inimitable dissonance as guitarist Joey Santiago's leads ring like air-raid sirens. DOOLITTLE perfectly captures The Pixies' refusal to be categorized into one form of musical identity. The album's most gorgeous melody is wrapped around the words "cease to exist, giving my goodbye," and crowned with the title "Wave Of Mutilation." The rest of the album follows suit, and even the love songs bear Francis' warped humor, boasting titles like "Tame" and "Dead."
DOOLITTLE is quintessential Pixies. Unflinching in their abrasion, the group created some of the best, most intriguing rock music of the early 1990s.
Rolling Stone (11/28/02, p.94) - 4 stars out of 5 - "...[Featuring a] breathtaking mix of noisy, almost surflike guitars, sweet pop melodies and primal-scream-therapy vocals..."
Q (1/03, p.69) - Included in Q Magazine's "100 Greatest Albums Ever"
Alternative Press (7/95, pp.78-79) - Ranked #13 in AP's list of the 'Top 99 Of '85-'95' - "...The fractious combination of [Black] Francis's over-the-top but strangely relevant lyrics and vocals, and the band's unsettling melodicism reached its epitome in 1989's DOOLITTLE..."
CMJ (1/5/04, p.26) - Ranked #2 in CMJ's "Top 20 Most-Played Albums of 1989"
Blender (Magazine) (p.86) - 5 stars out of 5 -- "DOOLITTLE offsets ROSA-style punk with painfully lovely expanses."