Many movies rely on songs to set the mood, and there are some that are relied upon a lot – what we like to call ‘Soundtrack Staples’. This time around we check out the killer Pixies anthem Where Is My Mind?.

Ooh-ooooooohhh… Stop! It’s possibly their best known song, yet it’s the Pixies single that never was – but somehow that fits well with everything Pixies.

Instead, Where Is My Mind? was the seventh track on their debut album Surfer Rosa (continuing the “track 7 is special” tradition of pretty much every album ever).

While people look for incredibly profound meaning in most every single word that emanates from Pixies singer/songwriter Charles ‘Black Francis’ Thompson, there isn’t necessarily anything particularly deep going on here – well, other than the setting. Apparently he wrote it after going scuba diving in the Caribbean, and there was a little fish that seemed to be following him…

Where Is My Mind? appeared on a couple of soundtracks to little flicks before the big one in 1999 (we’ll get to that down the page), which inducted many who hadn’t already had their glorious initiation into going off with the Pixies into the fold. That can only be a good thing, right?

As it wasn’t a single, and Pixies generally disliked making videos (for evidence: Here Comes Your Man, Velouria), here’s a clip of the original Pixies line-up performing Where Is My Mind? live back in 1988. Following that, our list of movie appearances by the original version of the song.

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A Matter of Degrees (1990)
Well, every song’s got to start somewhere – like this teen comedy flick. The production values were so high on this trailer that they spelled the name of lead star Arye Gross incorrectly… but credit points for nice use of Frank’s “STOP!”.

Hold Me Thrill Me Kiss Me (1992)
Another high class comedy… complete with added Sean Young! Oh well, lie back and think of the mechanical royalties…

The Adventures of Sebastian Cole (1998)
Umm, this one stars a pre-Entourage Adrian Grenier, and… when that’s the nicest thing that we can come up with then let’s hope that the next one does Pixies a little more justice.

Fight Club (1999)
Yes, this film about biffo and soap – described by somebody we know as “the blokiest movie ever” – was the one that kicked Where Is My Mind? into almost mainstream prominence. While it inspired many to explore the band’s works more, it also may be to blame for the alarming amount of very average cover versions of the song that emerged in ensuing years. If you haven’t seen Fight Club, SPOILER WARNING, as the video below is the very end of the movie.

Gaz Bar Blues (2003)
This French-Canadian production revolving around a guy known as The Boss who runs a petrol station is apparently quite good, but despite swimming in the internet for a while we couldn’t track down a genuine surviving copy of the trailer. Here’s a cool version of the classic Summertime from the soundtrack though:

Janis and John (2003)
This French flick certainly has a wacky premise: a dodgy insurance salesman who needs plenty of quick bucks tries to extract them from his hippie cousin by organising the second coming of John Lennon and Janis Joplin. We swear we’re not making that up!

Mr Nobody (2009)
A truly bonkers and beguiling movie experience, director Jaco Van Dormael’s movie stars Jared Leto and Sarah Polley. Here are their younger characters’ selves – via Juno Temple and Toby Regbo – doing what we would wager many have done to the accompaniment of our Pixies classic in question…

Horns (2013)
Harry Potter goes Hellboy!

Welcome to Me (2014)
This Kristen Wiig dramedy sees her charcater Alice win a massive lottery, after which she ditches her psychiatric meds and with Oprah-esque visions of grandeur buys her own talk show. Wheeled swan and all. After typing that we don’t feel any need to explain the inclusion of WIMY? on the soundtrack any further.

Knock Knock (2015)
Well, this fetid piece of trash from Eli Roth had to have at least one redeeming feature. Another SPOILER (plus LANGUAGE) WARNING, as the clip below is from the end of the movie. Mind you, watch this clip and you save 97 or so minutes of your life for better pursuits.

Slam (2016)
The Nick Hornby (High Fidelity, About a Boy) tale of a teenaged father-to-be who idolises pro skateboarder Tony Hawk novel comes to life in this Italian flick. Pixies bump up against the likes of Eels, Cake and Buddy Holly.

Profile (2018)
This tale of an undercover British journalist’s quest to bait and expose a terrorist recruiter through social media plays out entirely on a computer screen that we then watch on another screen, computer or otherwise. Whoa! Oh yeah, Where Is My Mind? features in it somewhere…

Die Heimsuchung (2021)
This German film – as you likely guessed from its title, which translates to “The Conjuring” in some translators but has nothing to do with that successful horror series – is a a little mysterious as a: it’s a mystery thriller and b: there’s nothing to be found trailer-wise online, nor any indication of how our beloved Pixies song is utilised. Anyway, here’s a still…

Die Heimsuchung

Check out our other Soundtrack Staples here.