Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills #239

                  Chalkhills, Number 239

                  Friday, 28 August 1992
Today's Topics:
              Re: XTC Spotlight on MuchMusic
              new promotional CD single out
                   Are you ready Eddy?
        Results of Third Chalkhills Readers Survey
            All this stuff about producers...
                        Book plug
           Dukes O'Stratosphear compilation CD
             CHART: Australian Singles Chart

Date: Wed, 26 Aug 92 17:04:17 PDT
From: "John M. Relph" <>
Subject: Re: XTC Spotlight on MuchMusic

Craig Hamm <> writes:

>	Did anyone else see the Much Music (Cdn.) 'Spotlight' on
>	XTC last Thursday ?  I missed it, but saw my roomates tape which
>	is now in his 'archive'

Anybody care to send this to me?  Of course, I couldn't watch it (no
VCR, no TV)...

	-- John


Subject: producers/progressions
From: Desi The Three-Armed Wonder Comic <>
Date: Thu, 27 Aug 92 11:09:13 PDT

john relph notes that the theory that xtc gets noisier the further
back in time is nixed by the mummer -> big express progression.  well,
don't forget the skylarking -> o&l progression either.

as for the next producer, i think it would be Way Cool if xtc worked
with thinktree.  thinktree write damn clever songs, and their
arrangements and production are always interesting and unique.  check
out their album "like the idea" - there's a track called "the living
room" which has some definite xtc english settlement-era influence.

i'd also vote for george martin, if the guy wasn't retired.

Jon Drukman (God's personal DJ)                 uunet!sco!jondr
With hungered flesh obscurely, he mutely craved to adore.


Subject: new promotional CD single out
From: Desi The Three-Armed Wonder Comic <>
Date: Thu, 27 Aug 92 12:15:43 PDT

i don't recall where i saw it (probably streetlight records), but
there is another of those for-radio-stations promotional CD singles
out.  it has "dear madam barnum" on it.  that's all.

just thought you die hard collectors (hi john!) would like to know so
you can run out and buy yet another useless piece of aluminum.  :)

Jon Drukman (God's personal DJ)                 uunet!sco!jondr
Ladies and gentlemen, introducing for the very last time...


From: (Gary Hanley )
Subject: Are you ready Eddy?
Date: Thu, 27 Aug 92 17:15:22 EDT

Tom attacks:

>From: (Tom Meyer)
>Subject: producers as nauseum

>Well, here's more fuel for the fire..The way I see it, ghanley's suggestion
>about Eddy Offord is so far off base that I find it hard to put the words
>"Eddy Offord" and "XTC" in the same sentence.

	...etc, etc.

	It worked! I knew I could get a hostile reponse if I threw Eddy's
name up on Chalkhills! :)

	Actually, I can't really see Eddy being a producer for XTC either,
but the way some things work out, I was really guessing that anything is
possible. Could anyone have guessed that Todd Rundgren would produce
_Skylarking_ before he signed on to do it? I certainly couldn't, but that's
because I wasn't aware of XTC's greatness yet! :)

	OMC - Has anyone seen the "New York Rock & Soul Revue," which
features Walter Becker and Donald Fagan? Great show! While they were
in the midst of "FM" (one of the first of seven Steely Dan tunes they
played), I couldn't help but think about XTC doing something similar
sometime in the future. And while I was pondering, I noticed that
Walter Becker actually bears a resemblence to Andy Partridge! At least
if Andy were about 10 years older than he is now anyway.
	Also, while exiting the show, I saw a guy with a _Skylarking_
T-shirt ahead of me. Of course, I had to catch up to him and stike
up a small conversation.

    Gary Hanley


Date: Thu, 27 Aug 92 15:45:47 PDT
From: John M. Relph <>
Subject: Results of Third Chalkhills Readers Survey
Organisation: Chalkhills Anonymous

The Third Chalkhills Survey

Hey folks, yes, it has been months and months since the Third
Chalkhills Survey was conducted.  Here, finally, are some results.

I had decided to try something different, inspired by a book I had
read.  Instead of picking favourite songs and albums, respondents
wrote paragraphs (ideally) to answer the four questions below.  What I
have done is to statistically select the most important key words from
the collected answers to the questions, in order of their appearence.
(I know there is a specific name for this process, but I don't know
it.)  I have interpreted the results in an attempt to explain them.
You can take the interpretations with a grain of salt.  The numbers in
parentheses indicate the number of appearences of each word in the

1. What is your favourite XTC album and what makes it special?

    song (49)
    listen (36)
    first (25)
    music (18)
    lyrics (13)

Clearly, it is the songs on the album that are the most important.
People like to listen to the album.  The first XTC album he or she
bought is still their favourite.  The music is very important, even
more important than the lyrics.

2. What is your favourite XTC song and what makes it special?

    lyrics (19)
    listen (14)
    music (12)
    great (12)

The lyrics make the song special.  It's a song that he or she likes to
listen to, and it has great music.

3. Why do you choose to listen to the music of XTC?

    lyrics (26)
    song (18)
    like (16)
    record (7)
    great (7)
    band (7)

Again, the lyrics are very important; they are what makes XTC's music
special.  XTC writes songs that people like.  XTC are a great band
that makes great records.

4. Why did you join Chalkhills and/or The Little Express?

    XTC (36)
    about (28)
    music (14)
    who (13)
    find (12)
    band (12)
    with (11)
    more (11)
    group (11)
    people (10)
    because (10)

Use the above words to form a sentence.  Because.  To find more people
who like the music of XTC.  To be part of a group of people with more
in common.  People who like XTC, the band.  Because.


Now that I've told you nothing you didn't know already, I thought I'd
share my personal favourites of the responses I received.

1. What is your favourite XTC album and what makes it special?

    It's still SKYLARKING, but ENGLISH SETTLEMENT is a close
    second.  SKYLARKING is special for a number of reasons: it was
    the first album to really get me back into listening to the
    band seriously. I bought it on a whim in 1986 in Harvard
    Square one afternoon, brought it home and loved it. Found "Big
    Day" to be really Beatles-esque; "Another Satellite"
    intriguing; is it to be taken at face value, or is it about an
    extra-marital affair? ("So circling we'll orbit another
    year/Two world that won't collide.") I love the vocal
    harmonies on this album, and the artwork is ~great~.

        Wes Wilson <>

  Honorable mention:

    Skylarking. I like it.

	William Carroll <>

2. What is your favourite XTC song and what makes it special?

    Extrovert.  It's an incredible song that never fails to pick
    me up and make me smile and sing along and take life a lot
    less seriously, as one should take life.  Maybe I'll even ask
    out that girl who works 5 cubicles down from me...

	Fred Hamilton <>

  Dishonorable mention:

    Rocky from a Barber Shop Tree. I always did like that flying
    squirrel.  What?  You say the song is about class C fireworks?
    Any way the simple pop simplicity of "Rocket" has made it a
    tune most likely to pop out of me unexpectedly.

	Jones Rutledge <>

3. Why do you choose to listen to the music of XTC?

    I did not choose the music of XTC, rather, the music chose me.
    I put the disc on the turntable in 1980 and the music jumped
    out of the speaker, picked me up and carried me up into the
    sky where I got a real intimate with the cumulus clouds.  I
    really wasn't asked to take such a thrilling trip, but I
    didn't argue and was very appreciative.

	Ray Sherrod <>

  Honorable Mentions:

    Once you discover it, it becomes a part of you, and you'll
    always return to it.

	Steve Krause <>

    it's (that word again...) cynical
    it's well-crafted
    it's thoughtful and thought-provoking
    it's thematically diverse
    it's musically brilliant
    it's fun, Fun, FUN!!

	Andre Czausov (The Neuromancer) <>

    Because they're simply the most uncompromisingly intelligent,
    funny, introspective, angry, wistful, topical, unpretentious,

    You get the picture.

	James McGowan <>

4. Why did you join Chalkhills and/or The Little Express?

    I felt like an old man after being an XTC fan for 10 years and
    never meeting anyone else who even remembered them.
    Chalkhills has helped renew my faith in the musical tastes of
    the world.

    Obligatory scenario:

    Me:  Hi.  I'm Jim and I am an XTC fan.

    Chalkhills readers:  Hi, Jim!

	James McGowan <>

    I suscribe to few other lists and they OK, but Chalkhills is
    fantastic because is put together with LOVE. The discussion is
    always very competent. XTC fans are nice people.

	Stefano Carra <>

    Cos I'm an anal-retentive geek who needs to obsess in print
    over the objects of his affections!!

	Jon Drukman <>


Hi, it's me again.  I hope you have enjoyed this.  I'll have you know
that I picked the above favourite answers without knowing which person
wrote which.  I had to look them up later.  Not to mention the fact that
I hadn't even thought about the Survey in months.

I must apologise for the length of time it took for me to compile these
results.  Sorry.  It won't happen again.  Trust me.  The check is in the
mail.  See you in church.


	-- John


From: "Donald G. Scheidt" <>
Subject: All this stuff about producers...
Date: Thu, 27 Aug 92 16:29:55 PDT

In Chalkhills, Number 238, (Tom Meyer) opines:

>Subject: producers as nauseum
>Well, here's more fuel for the fire..The way I see it, ghanley's suggestion
>about Eddy Offord is so far off base that I find it hard to put the words
>"Eddy Offord" and "XTC" in the same sentence.  This man's name is on
>some decent albums(_Fragile_ and _Close to the Edge_ most notably), but also
>had a hand in one of the most pretentious, overblown pieces of dross ever to
>lie on a turntable, _Tales from Topographic Oceans_.  Four sides, four songs.
>What were they thinking??  I admit it, I used to be an avid fan of the whole
>art-rock scene; but a collaberation with XTC by Mr. Offord would be laughable.
>I can hear it now..
>"Uh, Mr. Gregory, this is where we put the 15 minute guitar solo so start
> limbering up"
>"Gee Andy, these are good lyrics, but you don't mention existentialism or
> metaphysics the required 10 times per song"
>"Colin, you ever played a Rickenbacker like Chris Squire, boy can he play ??"

Yep, well look... It's nice to rant about Eddy O.'s association with art-
rockers like Yes, but let's face it: he didn't write and perform _TFTO_, he
just produced the damn thing.  One might as well refer to the work he did
on _Fragile_, or his association with fellow old farts Emerson, Lake, and
Palmer (anybody remember _Tarkus_?).  I don't think his responsibility lies
along the lines of "insert long guitar solo here" or "philosophical rant
goes here"; if you want to blame someone for that sort of silliness, blame
the likes of Jon Anderson, Pete Sinfield, Keith Emerson, Steve Howe, and
the rest of those old farts.  Remember also, the work you're citing above
was done *20 years* ago!  I would imagine Eddy Offord's style has taken a
few twists and turns since then.

>Gil Norton:
>Gary Smith:
>Geoff Emerick:

Now, these aren't bad at all, but if Geoff Emerick, why not somebody like
Alan Parsons ... ?  It might be the first decent thing he'd be involved
with, considereing the last 15 or 20 years!

Maybe now that Andy P. has swallowed his pride and admitted that he thinks
that Todd did a fine job on _Skylarking_, he could swallow it further and
attempt working with him again ... or were the clouds of ganja smoke that
accompany most of Todd's waking hours just *too* annoying to deal with :-)?

Further and farther afield: how about Haruomi Hosono or Ryuichi Sakamoto?
How about Bob Ezrin (assuming they could come close to affording him)?  How
about they actually _plan_ their next sessions and get a certain Steve
Lillywhite back at the producing helm??  Would Daniel Lanois do the job?

Just askin'... especially since we computer wankers (er, software geniuses,
yeah, that's it :-) aren't going to have anything to say about the final
selection anyway!!
Don                               | Republicans understand the importance     | of bondage between a mother and child.
                                  |  -- Vice President Dan Quayle


Date: 27 Aug 92 21:26:24 EDT
From: Steve Levenstein <>
Subject: Book plug

How nice it is to turn on one's radio and hear XTC or discussion
thereof! As happened today: turned on the car (and radio) and
heard this guy talking about The Book (y'know, Chalkhills!).
Said it was a good inside look into XTC, very honest, and he
suggested it was Andy's way of explaining to the world why he
can't perform live. Then "Mayor of Simpleton" was played.

"I believe the written word should be forgiven"
---> Steve


Date: Fri, 28 Aug 92 8:56:45 CDT
From: Ingrid de Beus <>
Subject: Dukes O'Stratosphear compilation CD

Hello, all.  I just bought a Dukes of Stratosphear CD for my buddy Sherman
(can't have it myself - violates my principles of record-purchasing - argh),
and I was wondering about it's little promo blurb "Both Dukes of Stratosphear
albums together in this one CD! Limited Edition only!" etc, etc.  I thought
there was only one Dukes album "Psionic Psunspot", but the CD listed
another, "25 O'Clock".  silly question on my part?

Ingrid Elvire Maria de Beus			there is no god			only greed,dung,and lies			you've got no soul
eyes of green smoke and hair of gold		only rips in your eyes


From: (Robert Pearson)
Subject: CHART: Australian Singles Chart
Date: 27 Aug 92 09:24:58 GMT
Organization: Delft University of Technology

        Australian Top 50 Singles - Week Ending 23 August 1992
as compiled by ARIA ( The Australian Record Industry Association Ltd.)

   TW   LW   TI      Title/Artist
   --   --   --      ------------
   50   44    8      The Disappointed - XTC


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