Pixies loud QUIET loud: a film about THE PIXIES

Shot over the course of the band’s 2004 reunion tour, Loud Quiet Loud presents the Pixies as unlikely rock icons whom you’d never want to hang out with backstage for fear of dying of acute boredom. On stage, a different, more dynamic story emerges, particularly when viewers close their eyes and listen to the music without the grounding effects of the unremarkable images of the band. To a member, the group is most interesting when going one-on-one with either filmmaker Matt Galkin or Steven Cantor. Put Kim Deal, Frank Black, Joey Santiago and David Lovering in a room together, however, and you’d swear you were in the waiting room of a dental clinic. Fortunately, not a lot of film is wasted on that profound void of communication but it is a recurring theme and one that is emphasised by the willingness of the members to open up and talk outside of the dysfunctional context of the band. Kim reveals herself to be a warm, addiction-addled sweetheart, while Lovering comes off as a weirdly tragic self-obsessive. Santiago, meanwhile, is the pensive, quiet, even-keeled one, while Black exhibits a benevolent leadership style that has far more to do with a soft shoulder than a hard nose. The film does a great job of capturing the awkward inter-band relationships that facilitated the band’s predictable demise while documenting the power of the Pixies’ music and the intense adoration of multi-generational fans that made this reunion almost as inevitable. Pixies fans in Western Canada will be forgiven for feeling neglected here, as the film makes little or no mention of the inaugural warm-up dates across the Prairie Provinces. (MVD)