Black Re-Interprets Pixies, Gets Mellow In Nashville
Amid the Pixies' wildly successful reunion tour, Frank Black has found time to prep two new albums, including a double-disc set. Tentatively due Oct. 12 via spinART is "Frank Black Francis," the firstAmid the Pixies' wildly successful reunion tour, vocalist/guitarist Frank Black has found time to prep two new albums, including a double-disc set. Tentatively due Oct. 12 via spinART is "Frank Black Francis," the first disc of which features his pre-Pixies demos, while the second disc sports new recordings of more than a dozen Pixies songs with Two Pale Boys' Andy Diagram and Keith Moline.
Among the cuts featured on the second disc are reinterpretations of the Pixies' "Cactus," "Into the White," "Monkey Gone to Heaven," "The Holiday Song" and "Caribou."
Black says the re-recordings stemmed from his desire to augment the demo material, which is of substandard audio fidelity, but has been in high demand for commercial release for years. "I did them to balance out the sh*ttiness of this little time capsule piece, so that Joe Blow, who may not know who the heck I am or who the Pixies are, wouldn't feel completely ripped off if he buys this," the artist tells Billboard.com.
As for the sessions with Diagram and Moline, Black reveals with a chuckle, "I just sang some lyrics into a microphone and said, 'See you later,' and then they went nuts. It's this sort of freeform, not jazzy, but kind of new-age-y weirdo thing. It's not really like a new record. It's more like an experiment."
Sometime next year, spinART is expected to unleash "Honeycomb," a record Black made in Nashville with a host of noted session musicians. The artist describes it as simply "a very mellow album." He says he can't recall whether he unveiled any of the material at a March acoustic show in San Francisco, but that the set features "all brand new songs."
Black's last solo release was 2003's "Show Me Your Tears," recorded with longtime backing band the Catholics. Asked if he's interested in resuming that collaboration at some point, he said, "Yeah, I suppose. I haven't even thought about it."
The Pixies begin an extensive North American swing Sept. 4 in Bend, Ore., with dates booked into December.