Call me nitpicky, but it drives me crazy when people don't pay attention to every detail of a package. Take this Eagle Vision release of an unplugged Pixies performance at Rhode Island's Newport folk fest in August of last year. The sunny concert is well shot, the music sounds crystal-clear and Frank Black and co. provide endearing bits of snappy banter, all captured without an excess of audience hoots and crackly applause. Then you get to the pathetic bonus features section, which promises a fly-on-the-wall featurette, photos and more. Not only is the so-called featurette a lame-ass tacked-on mishmash of the pre-Newport acoustic rehearsal sessions and a dress rehearsal/casual live show made up of poor-quality footage that's been edited with little care for pacing, flow or continuity, but the producers of the DVD package didn't even take the time to proofread their titles! Lucky viewers get to watch Pixies in 'accoustic rehersals.' Sheesh.
Beyond those anal-retentive complaints, Live In Newport is a pretty useless addition to the Pixies oeuvre. A host of superior performances were captured on last year's Pixies Sell Out DVD, and though it's kinda cool to hear steel-string versions of Here Comes Your Man and Velouria, or to watch Kim Deal figure out harmonies to the trad-folk ditty Been All Around The World while gingerly balancing a massive acoustic bass, part of the band's appeal is their characteristic jagged-echo electric guitar aesthetic. Black, Deal, Joey Santiago and David Lovering may now look more suited to playing for tweedy boomers, but their tunes are still best heard through the sheen of amped-up distortion.