Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills #116

                  Chalkhills, Number 116

                 Friday, 9 November 1990
Today's Topics:
                 X-plaining XTC (part 1)
            Virgin Limited Edition Piccy Disc
                 What I'd like to see...
                   Re: Chalkhills #115

Date: Sun, 4 Nov 1990 17:20:21 PST
From: John M. Relph <>
Subject: X-plaining XTC (part 1)

Here's most of _X-plaining XTC_ (part 1), based on an interview by
Steve Kolanjian and David Dasch, published in _Aware_, A Rock Music
Research Journal, No. 8, Winter 1981-82:

    _3D-EP_: Science Friction; b/w She's So Square; Dance
    Band; Goodnight, Sucker.  "Science Friction" features a
    sound made by a filing cabinet in Abbey Road Studios.  The
    short finale, "Goodnight, Sucker" is an impromptu duet
    featuring Barry's celeste and Terry's vocal, and is listed
    neither on the cover nor the label.  All tracks are
    non-LP.  Promo films were made for the first three tracks
    on the _3D-EP_.

    _Presented Free By Record Mirror: This is not what it it
    seems to be.  Although it was given away by Record Mirror,
    it is not a flexi-disc.  It is a regularly pressed 45 RPM
    EP with the standard blue Virgin labels.  Also, the
    version of "Traffic Light Rock" included here is not the
    studio track that appears later on the 10" _Guillotine_
    sampler.  What we have here is a live performance of the
    tune from an early concert.  The other tracks on the EP
    are taken from Virgin LP's released before _White Music_,
    so this issue was probably in circulation before that LP
    as well.  Surely, this is the rarest XTC disc.  Issued
    without a picture sleeve.

    _White Music_: The LP was originally to be tagged _Black
    Music_, but this name was rejected by record company execs
    who thought the title would suggest a blues or soul album.
    "All Along the Watchtower" was recorded live (in the Manor
    studio).  The odd keyboard sounds on "I'm Bugged" were
    made by two roadies who had no idea how to play a
    keyboard.  Outtakes include "Refrigeration Blues"
    (unfinished, later used in "Commerciality (Signal Ad)" on
    the _Take Away / The Lure of Salvage_ LP), "Let's Have
    Fun", "Heatwave" (later released on a single), "Fireball
    XL-5" (theme from the marionette TV series of the same
    name -- at one time in XTC's live repertoire), and
    "Traffic Light Rock" (later to appear on the sampler LP

    _Guillotine_: a 10" Virgin sampler, comprised mostly of
    songs from singles.  "Traffic Light Rock", an outtake
    from _White Music_, is unavailable elsewhere.

    _Go 2_: The album was originally to be called _Strong and
    Silent_, but the band came to prefer _Go 2_ (their second
    go at an album).  The Brian in "Battery Brides (Andy
    Paints Brian)" is Brian Eno.  The song "sounded like
    something Brian would do", explained Andy.  The phrase
    "Battery Brides" plays on "battery chickens", chickens
    that are bred only for reproduction.  Listen closely for a
    short quote of "The Wedding March" and Andy's whispering
    "Here come the brides" during the finale.  The greenhouse
    of "Life is Good in the Greenhouse" is down the block from
    the Abbey Road studio where the LP was recorded.  On the
    cover of the Beatles' _Abbey Road_ album, the greenhouse
    is just out of view on the left.  "My Weapon" and
    "Super-Tuff" are Barry Andrews' only contributions to
    XTC's vinyl history [Ed: excluding "Goodnight, Sucker"].
    Outtakes include "Looking for Footprints", "Sargasso Bar",
    (a Barry song later rerecorded for his solo EP _Town and
    Country_), "Strange Tales, Strange Tails" (this Andy tune
    eventually turned up on the flip of the "Respectable
    Street" 45), "Things Fall to Bits" (a Barry song for which
    Andy wrote the oriental riff that was ultimately employed
    in "Millions" on the _Drums and Wires_ LP.  Barry objected
    to the riff, a point of contention that fostered Barry's
    role in the band falling to bits), and "Us Being Us"
    (another Barry song).

    _GO+_: These tracks are dub version of songs on _Go 2_,
    respectively "Meccanik Dancing (Oh We Go!)", "Jumping in
    Gomorrah", "Battery Brides (Andy Paints Brian)", "I Am the
    Audiences", and "The Rhythm".  In dub technique, the
    original tape is reprocessed through the mixing board,
    with some elements altered, some removed, and some new
    ones added.  "We Kill the Beast" features the sound
    (inadvertently recorded) of a tape of another piece
    rewinding.  _GO+_ was initially issued with _Go 2_ in
    Britain (and perhaps elsewhere), the LP and EP wrapped in
    a poster and all three items in a plastic bag.  Later,
    there were sold individually by record dealers in the US.

    Barry Andrews departs XTC at this point, leaving primarily
    because he felt his compositions weren't being given a
    fair portion of the spotlight.  Curiously, as Andy pointed
    out, since his break with XTC, for the most part, Barry
    has played on other people's records.

However, here's a few short notes from _X-plaining XTC Part 2_:

    Terry played the metal door of a microphone cupboard on
    "Science Friction".

    Add to the outtakes of the _White Music_ LP a dub version
    of "Fireball XL-5".

    More trivial that trivia: When we met the band in April
    1981 they told us the greenhouse that inspired "Life Is
    Good in the Greenhouse" was next to Abbey Road studios.
    Er, they were joking.  Sorry.  The gong sounds in the
    song, however, were made by two lampshades struck with a


Date: Tue, 6 Nov 1990 20:49:17 PST
From: John M. Relph <>
Subject: Virgin Limited Edition Piccy Disc

I saw this posting in and thought you all might be
interested.  I have also seen a set for Genesis.

	-- John

From: (Al Crawford)
Subject: Virgin Limited Edition Piccy Disc Boxed Sets
Date: 5 Nov 90 13:29:34 GMT
Organization: Edinburgh University CS Department

Does anyone have the full list of Limited Edition Picture Disc boxed sets
that Virgin has just released? I've seen the following in local shops...

Simple Minds

The one I've bought (O.M.D) has catalogue number TPAK 7, suggesting that
there's more been released. Thinking of Virgin artists, I can think of at
least three other boxed sets (China Crisis, Human League, Heaven 17) that
I'd buy if they were released in the same format.

In case anyone is interested, the sets contain the following...

O.M.D. contains
         Architecture & Morality
Simple Minds contains
         (can never remember the title of this one)
         Reel To Real Cacophony
         Empires & Dance
XTC contains
         (The one with all the writing on the cover)
         Drums & Wires
         Black Sea

Each disc in each set is a limited edition piccy disc. Quite nice. I bought
mine for #24.99 in HMV.

Unrealistic Dream : That they'll release the first three John Foxx albums on
CD as a boxed set. BWAHAHAHAHAHA!
Al Crawford - INTERNET : | "The 70 billion people of Earth -
                 JANET : |         Where are they?"


Date:    Tue, 6 Nov 1990 12:23:23 CST

To whoever asked:

	Go+ is absolute crap and of value only to the completist.



Date: Wed,  7 Nov 90  12:41:41 EST
From: Eyebeam@umass.bitnet
Subject: What I'd like to see...

  Any chance of XTC being produced by Adrian Sherwood and Kieth LeBlanc?


Date: Fri, 9 Nov 1990 13:51:03 PST
From: John M. Relph <>
Subject: Re: Chalkhills #115

Tom Loden <> sez:

>I can't decide. Should I get "Explode Together" even though I already own
>"Take Away/The Lure of Salvage" on vinyl??? Is it worth it JUST to get "Go+"?
>I've been dying to get my hands on "Go+" for a while now, until Eric
>posted what was on it. Now I'm not so sure. I can't say that having 20,000,000
>remixes of the same song is all that appealing. And if it was that appealing,
>I think having merely TA/LS would be plenty. On the other hand, "Rag & Bone
>Buffet" sounds like a "must have", even though I have "Beeswax". Ahhhhhhhhh!!

_GO+_ is not five remixes of the same song.  It's five remixes of
different songs from _Go 2_.  _TA/LS_ is definitely better than _GO+_,
in any case.  But it's sure nice to hear the quiet parts of _TA/LS_
without the annoying LP noise.  _R&BB_, on the other other hand, is a

Now, why wasn't "Goodnight, Sucker" on _R&BB_?

	-- John


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