Pixies & Bassist Paz Lenchantin Part Ways: 'My Departure Is A Bit Of A Surprise To Me'

5 March 2024 | 8:43 am | Mary Varvaris

"It looks like they have a solid plan figured out, which in turn has pushed me to move onwards onto new projects that I am excited about."

Pixies @ Hordern Pavilion, Sydney

Pixies @ Hordern Pavilion, Sydney (Credit: Pete Dovgan)

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American alternative rock outfit the Pixies have parted ways with longtime bassist Paz Lenchantin, with the former A Perfect Circle bassist alleging that she hasn’t left the band of her own accord.

Lenchantin became a touring member of the Pixies in 2014; in 2016, the band revealed that she was officially a full-time member of the group. In her time with the Pixies, Lenchantin played on three of their albums: 2016’s Head Carrier, 2019’s Beneath The Eyrie and 2022’s Doggerel.

In a dry social media post, the Pixies announced Lenchantin’s departure, sharing that Band Of Skulls bassist Emma Richardson had joined the band. Pixies stated that Lenchantin “exited the band to concentrate on her own projects. We’re grateful for Paz’s many contributions and wish her all the very best going forward.”

The statement continued, “We are delighted to welcome Emma Richardson on bass.” Richardson will make her touring debut with the Pixies this Friday on their Bossanova x Trompe Le Monde European tour in Dublin.

In a statement shared with Rolling Stone, Lenchantin wrote that the decision to leave wasn’t hers. Her statement reads:

It has been a dream of dreams these past 10 years to have been accepted as a Pixie by the band and by fans, and an honour to have contributed to the Pixies’ legacy. My departure is a bit of a surprise to me, as it is to many, but it looks like they have a solid plan figured out, which in turn has pushed me to move onwards onto new projects that I am excited about.

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In a 2017 live review of the Pixies at Sydney’s Hordern Pavilion, The Music’s Chris Familton declared, “Paz Lenchantin is well and truly embedded as a key member of Pixies 2.0, exuding both confidence and deference to the songs.” In a review of the band’s show at Brisbane’s Riverstage, The Music’s Benny Doyle added that Lenchantin “lays down magic on the lower end of the scale.”

Drummer David Lovering previously said about Lenchantin’s addition to the band, “Paz is a joy to be around. She’s very funny, and we’re having more fun than we’ve ever had as a band; we all have a blast together, on and off stage.”

A few bassists have come and gone from the Pixies, including Kim Deal, who played from their founding in 1986 until 2013 (when she focused on The Breeders full-time); former Muffs bassist Kim Shattuck played with them in 2013 and was replaced by Lenchantin late that year.