4AD – 2001 – 48 minutes

With Frank Black's stock on the rise again thanks to his mighty 'Dog In The Sand' opus, '...B Sides' provides a chance to review his previous incarnation as Black Francis, Pixies mainman and indie icon. The Pixies were one of the great B-sides bands: the outfits who didn't see their flipsides as a dumping ground for bottom of the barrel remixes or studio songs masquerading as live tracks. This collection gathers together six UK singles and gives another quirky perspective on a band who were big but never big enough. Video game soundtracks ('Theme From Narc') sit alongside spaced out versions of their own classics ('Wave Of Mutilation') and bizarre cover versions in Spanish ('Evil Hearted You'). It also showcases the other - often overlooked talents - at work in the band: from drummer David Lovering's Debbie Gibson homage 'Make Believe' to Kim Deal's breathless delivery on the amped up fury of 'Into The White' and Neil Young's 'I've Been Waiting For You'. If you haven't discovered the Pixies by this stage, this is not the ideal place to start – for that you need 'Surfer Rosa' and 'Doolittle' - but for the initiated, this will only lead to more hopes of a reunion.

Harry Guerin

Tracklisting: River Euphrates – Vamos (Live) – In Heaven (Lady In The Radiator Song) (Live) – Manta Ray – Weird At My School – Dancing The Manta Ray – Wave Of Mutilation (UK Surf) – Into The White – Bailey's Walk – Make Believe – I've Been Waiting For You – The Thing – Velvety Instrumental Version – Winterlong – Santo – Theme From Narc – Build High – Evil Hearted You – Letter To Memphis (Instrumental)