Photos and Review by Raven Divito
In a transfixing performance at San Francisco’s Warfield Theater on October 23, 2023, The Breeders embarked on a time-traveling journey that saw the iconic band perform their seminal masterpiece “Last Splash” in its entirety, and the air was electric with excitement.
The 23-song set started with the haunting strains of “New Year,” setting the stage for a chronological ride through the album, and then came “Cannonball” as the second song of the night, igniting an instant surge of excitement that propelled fans even crushier against the barricade.
Formed in 1989 as a side project by Kim Deal and Tanya Donelly, hailing from the Pixies and Throwing Muses, The Breeders were later joined by bassist Josephine Wiggs. After Donelly’s departure to pursue her new band, Belly, Kim Deal’s twin sister, Kelly Deal, took the role of lead guitarist, while Jim MacPherson grabbed the drumming spot.
“Last Splash” achieved commercial success and garnered critical acclaim, and the iconic “Cannonball” reached an impressive #2 position on Billboard. Then after touring Lollapallooza in 1994 the band went on hiatus.
As the evening unfolded, “Invisible Man” wove a spacey, epic soundscape, while “No Aloha” radiated a bright and booming energy. Hits like “Divine Hammer” and “Saints” kept the crowd’s spirits going, with the harmonious synergy of sisters Kim and Kelly Deal serving as their guiding light.
The lesser-known tracks from the album shined too — “Driving on 9,” Pixies cover “Gigantic,”and “Happiness Is A Warm Gun” were favorites – and then The Breeders made a return for a big encore that showed their enduring brilliance, with “Wait in the Car” and “When I Was A Painter” plus “Iris” leaving the audience with a huge sense of nostalgia and a night they would cherish for years to come.
The Breeders, with their profound influence on the world of indie rock, particularly through the Deal sisters, have inspired countless young women to pick up guitars and embark on their own musical journeys, and have built a legacy in rock and roll that won’t be forgotten.