Formed in Boston in 1986, Pixies quickly became a mainstay of the alternative rock boom of the '90s. The group was originally formed by guitarist Joey Santiago and vocalist Black Francis, who met while both were studying at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and shortly thereafter recruited bassist Kim Deal and drummer David Lovering. The band first came together in 1986, and a 17-track demo, informally titled the Purple Tape, earned them a spot on the stalwart indie label 4AD. Nine songs from the Purple Tape were released as the mini-album Come on Pilgrim in 1987. Their proper full-length debut, Surfer Rosa, arrived in 1988, followed by Doolittle in 1989. Both albums received considerable critical acclaim and expanded the group’s fanbase, featuring the Pixies’ biggest hits to date, “Where Is My Mind?” on Surfer Rosa and “Here Comes Your Man” on Doolittle.
During the tour in support of Doolittle, tensions between Francis and Deal escalated, contributing to the band’s decision to go on a short hiatus. Before recording and releasing Bossanova in 1990, Francis, Santiago, and Lovering moved to Los Angeles, while Deal formed The Breeders with Tanya Donnelly and Josephine Wiggs. Trompe le Monde followed in 1991, and, after touring the album, the Pixies called it quits. Between 1993 and the band’s reunion in 2003, its members worked on a variety of solo and side projects. Rumors of a reunion grew ahead of the band’s first tour in over 10 years in 2004. They made several appearances at festivals and toured on and off until Deal left in 2013. The band then released EP1, EP2, and EP3 -- later condensed and released as Indie Cindy -- and added A Perfect Circle bassist Paz Lenchantin to their touring lineup. Head Carrier, the sixth Pixies album, arrived in September of 2016.
In January of 2019, the band announced that their next full-length would be due out September 2019. In June, they announced that its name would be called Beneath the Eyrie and shared leading single “On Graveyard Hill”. The album would go on to be the Pixies' best-received since their return.