When asked about the Pixies, bands love to make comments like these (reported on Slate.com
"I was trying to write the ultimate pop song. I was basically trying to rip off the Pixies."
—Kurt Cobain (Nirvana frontman)
"The quiet/loud dynamic that's dominated alternative radio for the last 14 years can be attributed to one and only one band, the Pixies."
—Dave Grohl (Nirvana drummer and Foo Fighter's frontman)
"The reason we don't use as much guitar now is there are only a handful of Pixies albums. You can't keep copying them."
—Johnny Greenwood (Radiohead guitarist)
Pretty much every alternative rock and indie band owes something to the Pixies. As Spin magazine put it
in 2005, "So many bands have owed so much to Surfer Rosa
over the past 17 years that it's hard to grasp how freaky and futuristic the album sounded in 1988." These artists include the likes of—along with Nirvana, Radiohead, and the Foo Fighters who were already mentioned—The Smashing Pumpkins, Eddie Vedder and Pearl Jam, Mudhoney, Modest Mouse, Nada Surf, Broken Social Scene, Wolf Parade, and tons of others. What we're getting at is that Pixies' influence has become so ingrained in the foundations of modern rock that extracting every bit of it would be, well, a lot of work. Suffice it to say they're really, really important.