The Pixies were one of the most influential alt rock bands of the late ’80s with a crunching blend of punk, indie guitar rock and classic pop. This week’s throwback is their 1988 single, “Gigantic.”
Opening with a simple yet hypnotic bass line by Pixies lead Kim Deal, “Gigantic” was co-written by Deal and lead vocalist/guitarist Black Francis. Inspired by the film Crimes of the Heart, the record refers to a woman’s observation of a black man making love to another woman. Deal wrote the song under her pseudonym of the time, Mrs John Murphy. Francis told SELECT magazine about the record, “a good chord progression, very Lou Reed influenced. I’d had the word ‘gigantic’ in my mind because the chord progression seemed very big to me.” Interesting, there are two known versions of “Gigantic” recorded by Pixies, but equally lauded is Reel Big Fish’s California ska punk version, recorded in 1999 for their tribute album “Where’s My Mind: A Tribute to The Pixies.” Other bands that have covered the song? Belle & Sebastian, The Frames, Pavement, Gemma Hayes, The Katies, The Miserable Rich and The Hippos.