Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills #362

                  Chalkhills, Number 362

                  Saturday, 16 July 1994
Today's Topics:
                 Re: Love at first sight!
                   XTC/Swindon anecdote
                   next album / lyrics
                    XTC & the Dummies
                  let me have it (splat)
                    AP ten years gone
                   Re: Chalkhills #361
                   Re: Chalkhills #361
                      New XTC album
                  real Dukes influences
                  obscure XTC sightings
 Nihilon, XTC Capital, New Poster, Pre-English Settlement


Date: Wed, 13 Jul 94 21:53:37 -0700
From: (John Relph)
Subject: Re: Love at first sight! (Tom Keekley) fell in "Love at first sight!":

>And so we were married. BBC's live disk from the Black Sea tour, Dec 22,
>1980. I breezed through the Chalkhill discography and didn't see it, but
>I'm sure most of you know about it. If not, and it is rare, let me know.

Ah, it's there all right, in the "Collections, Retrospectives and
More" section:

 27. Live In Concert

     BBC Radio 1 Live in Concert.  Life Begins At The Hop (3'55); Burning With
     Optimism's Flame (4'24); Love At First Sight (3'10); Respectable Street
     (3'51); No Language In Our Lungs (4'59); This Is Pop (2'49); Scissors
     (sic) Man (4'49); Towers Of London (5'23); Battery Brides (7'18); Living
     Through Another Cuba (3'29); Generals and Majors (4'28); Making Plans For
     Nigel (4'29); Are You Receiving Me? (3'18).  live in London, 22 December
     1980, same concert as BBC Rock Hour #212.
     a. CD, Windsong International (BBC) UK, WINCD 026, 15? November 1992.

And no, sorry, it's not rare.  (Actually, it's well done.)

        -- John


Date: Wed, 13 Jul 1994 22:49:10 -0700 (PDT)
From: Chris Zinn <>
Subject: Introductions

Dear XTC list:
I have been enjoying this list since subscribing a couple of weeks ago,
after returning from a year teaching in Turkey.  I have admired the
band's work for rather a long time.  I vividly remember being sat down by
a friend in my apartment in NYC to listen to Go 2.  After finding the
first [?] intriguing, "Beat Town" suddenly leaped into my room and
carried me aloft.  I'd never heard such wah-wah harmonies and modal
playing, all of it hoisted upon a post-punk musical vocabulary.  The
record jcaket and liner were intriguing as well, perhaps the first
deconstructive pop album I'd seen.  Then Drums & Wires appeared,and the
band appeared in NYC, playing every song, it seems, extra fast, really in
a hurry.  Black Sea soon followed, and the band toured again.  I well
remember seeing them at the Ritz, already so enthralled by these three
albums.  Andy anchored the band around him.  He deliveres the songs with
extraordinary vividness.  Even from the back of the hall his facial
expressions and physical gestures seemed to outline the songs so
effectively, and every once in a while his guitar would suddenly clang
out these bell like notes to conclude a song.  Performances of "Scissors
Man" featured a black and white film of various textured objects--sort of
like visual Good'n'Plenty--dancing on Andy as he sang.  At the Ritx
concert they also introduced songs from English Settlement, including
Towers of london and a dazzling rendition of Snow Man.
        These were among the most exalted concerts I've seen.  Each
subsequent album is always interesting, challenging, and welcomed, though
English Settlement seems the culmination of a lot of
things, both for the group and musical scene of the early '80s.
        Well, there's a lot to say about such a group.  Thanks to the
other writers for their comments.  I understand the feelings of one of
the recent posters who wrote that he was so moved by Andy's "Bye Bye" at
the end of "Funk Pop a Roll"--how nice to hear from other people who
listen so intently.
        Bearing in mind that I have only recently joined, does anyone
haveinformation or opinions about CD masterings of the albums?  I've hear
that there are British Virgin "pressings" of English Settlement and Black
Sea, for example, that were mastered differenently for CD than those
Geffen releases, which sound hugely inferior to the original analogue
vinyl pressings.  I'd appreciate any comments about sound and recording
quality regarding available CDs.  If you have the British English
Settlement, by the way, a glance at the run-out groove should reveal that
it was mastered by someone with an insignia enclosing 'r' and 'c' in a
stylized 's.'  It sounds wonderful, and the CD does not.
Christopher Zinn


Date: Thu, 14 Jul 94 11:43:15 +0100
From: John Nicholls <>
Subject: XTC/Swindon anecdote

XTC/Swindon anecdote 001 -

Sometime in 1980, myself and a couple of friends were trying to gain
entry to the Brunel Rooms, a nightclub above the shopping centre here
in Swindon.  70s tack in extremis - carpetted walls, a revolving bar,
bow-tied bouncers, crap beer, tables and red velvet chairs surrounding
a large dance floor on which we used to mince and twirl hoping to
catch the eyes of the flat-chested girl from the Art class.  The club
is exactly the same today.

"Not tonight lad - not in that T-shirt".  The bouncer with a black
vampire butterfly on his neck took exception to my Slaughter and the
Dogs 'Do it Dog Style' T-shirt, can't think why.

Most of my friends came from Purton at the time (apologies to those
who haven't read 'Chalkhills and Children' - why not? - or who are
unfamiliar with the local geography of Swindon).  One of my friends
was the youngest of four brothers, and his second eldest sibling had
just joined XTC ... "Hey my brother's just bought a house off Crombey
Street, let's see if he'll lend us a shirt".  So off we trooped to the
unassuming house of Mr D Gregory.

He let us in, my friend explained my predicament and we stood
sheepishly in the living room while Mr G went upstairs and came back
down with ... a hideous navy blue shirt with wing collars.  For which
I was very grateful, as it gained me entry to the Brunel Rooms and I
was once more able to shimmy like an idiot, utterly invisible to Her
Of The Paintbrushes.  Looking like a fat yokel Starsky with glasses.

XTC were a local band to us then, we were unaware of the global
following which had been building up.  I kept a piece of cotton from
the shirt and sent it to a friend as a joke - "A souvenir from
Swindon's favourite sons".  You have to understand the English
perception of Swindon to appreciate why this was amusing...

I wish I could remember details - unfortunately I'd imbibed a certain
quantity of Merrydown cider and was more concerned with getting into
the nightclub.  The house was almost identical to my own - a small
terrace on a hill, front room and back room knocked through to make
one large downstairs room, kitchen extension at the back, two bedrooms
upstairs (90% of Swindon townhouses have a similar layout).

It all seemed utterly normal then - a mate's brother helping us out,
any of us would do the same now.  Except that these days I'd get
refused entry for wearing a navy blue shirt with collars like yacht
sails, and let in free with a genuine 70s punk T-shirt ...

JP Nicholls


Date: Thu, 14 Jul 1994 12:50:43 +0100
From: Simon Wilson <>
Subject: next album / lyrics

A couple of comments on Chalkhills 361

Barry Greenberg quoted an interview with Andy Partridge, where he mentioned
that the new album would be similar to "Rook" and "Bungalow". I was very
disappointed, as I feel that those two are among the low points on Nonsuch.
Of course, that doesn't mean I won't buy it...

By the way, I've just read the June issue of Q magazine, which mentioned that
work on the new album was about to begin. However, I don't know how reliable
the information is, since it also stated that the album would be the first`
since O&L!!

Chong Hyun Byun asks about the lyrics to English Settlement. I don't know if
are printed on the CD booklet, but of course they are avaliable from the
Chalkhills archives. Having a vinyl copy myself with no lyric sheet, I
downloaded them recently. I was really impressed some of the lyrics I couldn't
quite get from the record, especially "It's Nearly Africa", and "Jason and the
Argonauts". They're really strong songs! With the help of the archives I'm
going to rediscover Drums and Wires next!!


Subject: XTC & the Dummies
Date: 14 Jul 94  08:47 EST

 I recently came across an old Rolling Stone article from back in May about
 the Crash Test Dummies.  At the end of the article, they were talking about
 their current tour when a certain hero of ours was mentioned.  It is a nice
 tribute so I will quote.  (If you've already discussed this, I apologize.)

     From a May issue of Rolling Stone---

         The Dummies are on a world tour until Christmas; they've
      toured with Bryan Adams and will open for Elvis Costello this
      spring.  Who [Brad] Roberts (singer) would really like to play
      with, though - XTC's Andy Partridge - never tours.  "He is the
      best songwriter in pop music," Roberts says, suddenly leaning in
      to the tape recorder to make a direct appeal.  "Andy, I love you,
      I love you.  Come to me, Andy."

 I think this just goes to show that no matter what you think of a person,
 or their music, or personality, everybody deep down has got some taste.
 It's good to hear A.P. get some recognition from fellow musicians.

     "Speak for yourself......."             


Date: Thu, 14 Jul 94 9:42:10 EDT
From: Jeff Rosedale <>
Subject: let me have it (splat)

Re. the posting from the last issue about the cassette of unreleased XTC,
containing: four instrumentals, demos of songs from "25 O'clock," the
drunken XTC doing "Community Worker Breakdown" (which I have thanks to you,
John), a couple answering machine messages and a couple other random

How can I get this thing?  Sale, trade, pound of flesh?  Help!



Date: Thu, 14 Jul 94 12:00:36 EST
From: (Robert Stacy)
Subject: AP ten years gone

   In the process of cleaning up around here, I came across an old
copy of the _Fairfield County Advocate_ (a small-circulation, freebee
alternative paper here in Connecticut), that I stashed away nearly a
decade ago.  Dated November 7, 1984, the issue contains a 'phone
interview with the inestimable Mr. P., conducted by one Brett
Milano while the band was recording _The Big Express_.
   For the sake of chronological perspective, it appears there was
something of a lag between the interview itself, and its eventual
publication; though printed around the time of _The Big Express_'s
release, according to the article's author, "It was XTC's first
American interview after the release of _Mummer_."
   And, for further historical context, on "The Advocate's Connecticut
Hit List" that week, appearing on the opposite page, _Purple Rain_ was
Number One on the list of Connecticut's Best Selling Albums . . . and a
little tune by the name of "This World Over" was the current Best
Selling Import.



                            *   *   *

XTC: Rockers in a Dangerous Time
An exclusive and revealing discussion with the band's eloquent frontman

By Brett Milano

   Every era of rock and roll has its unsung heroes, the bands that
make superb music without gaining widespread recognition.  And of all
this era's unsung bands, XTC may be the most heroic.  Over a string of
seven albums, Andy Partridge and company have brought modern rock to
rare peaks of creativity and intelligence.  From the giddy experiments
of 1978's _Go 2_ to the pastoral beauty of last year's _Mummer_, XTC
have seldom sounded like anyone but themselves.  And their singles--to
name three, "Senses Working Overtime," "Life Begins at the Hop," and
"Great Fire"--rank with the past decade's most individual pop (for the
uninitiated, seek out _Waxworks_, an essential English compilation of
their A-sides).
   But it hasn't been an easy road for the band.  Two years ago, a
commercial breakthrough seemed possible on the heels of their _English
Settlement_ album.  But Partridge suffered a nervous breakdown early in
the tour, causing his decision to retire the band from live
performance.  The _Mummer_ album had a troubled history, nearly staying
unreleased due to its more experimental sound.
   Still, the band remains active and optimistic, XTC--now a trio of
Partridge, bassist Colin Moulding, and guitarist Dave Gregory--
have just released _The Big Express_ (Geffen), their seventh album
(original working titles were _Coalface_, _Shaking Skinheads_, and
_Bastard Son of Hard Blue Rayhead_).  After years of struggling,
they've seemingly decided that commercial success doesn't matter, that
it's enough to make music with your heart and soul behind it.  This new
resolve speaks well for XTC's future; perhaps it will even backfire and
produce the long-deserved hit.
   This interview with Andy Partridge was done by phone from the band's
rural English hometown of Swindon, Wiltshire.  It was XTC's first
American interview after the release of _Mummer_.

   Advocate: I believe you're in the studio right now?

   Partridge: That's right, we're working at Crescent in Bath, a little
cottage industry of a studio.  We commute from Swindon every morning
jump in a car and head out.  We've been working on the album for three
weeks, so it's really just the tip of the iceberg--or else we're
brushing all the sand away from this little pointed thing, and
hopefully there's a pyramid at the bottom.

   A: Is there a theme to the songs you're writing now?

   P: Right now it's difficult to say.  I can only think about the
songs after the album's been out for some time.  Then it's cleared from
your system, you've flushed it away, and you can say "well, it's that
shape, but I couldn't see it while I was inside it."  We've started
work on about 16 tracks.  Let's see, there's "Reign of Blows," about
totalitarianism, trying to explain that there's not much difference
between Britain's empire, America's empire, the Nazi empire.  There's
"I Bought Myself a Liarbird," a little song about our manager.

   A: You said recently that the next album would be a more r&b record
after _Mummer_.  Did it turn out that way?

   P: I think so.  We're conscious of wanting to get away from the
_English Settlement_/_Mummer_ sound.  I think we get bored over a
period of two albums, and want to move away.  I don't think you'll hear
any acoustic guitars this time, or any particularly multilayered
things.  I think it'll be quite a tough record.

   A: How do you spend your time, now that the band doesn't tour?  Do
you stay on your own and write songs?

   P: Mostly, yeah.  I'm a hermit, really.  I don't like the glare of
publicity--it's a horribly corny phrase, but it's true.  I get
embarrassed if I get recognized in the street.  Teenage girls will rush
up and it's me blushing, not them!  Unless I keep away from that music-
biz stuff, I don't think I could write any songs.  I tread a fine
balance between just about liking music, and having 99 percent distaste
for it.  I think that if I spent any more time in the music business,
I'd lose that little one percent.

   A: Does that make it harder for XTC to stay intact as a band?

   P: In a sense, we're not like three or four fellows plugging into a
wall and saying "yeah!  Here we go!"--the _Hard Day's Night_-ness of
it, you know what I mean?  It's impossible to be that anymore, because
now we're just three friends and a mercenary on drums.  The visual
group identity has ceased to be.  We're all pretty mundane-looking
anyway, we don't wear makeup . . .

   A: No hair down to your nose . . .

   P: Well, maybe I'll grow the hair from inside my nose, and tape it
to my chest!  But really, we've got no high-level visual thing to keep
up.  For me, music is all--I'm not that crazy on video presentation of
music, and locking it too much with visuals.  I'm not happy with the
videos we've done--we were just the butt of filmmakers' concepts.  When
you've got three minutes to make an impact, all you can do is be kooky
--you start jumping around saying "love me, love me."  It looks pretty
crass, I must admit.  I suppose we'll have to start making videos
again, just to keep in touch with the public, but I'd like to redress
the balance and do some good ones.

   A: What kept _Mummer_ from being released here for so long?

   P: Oh, loads of things.  When we first finished it, we took it to
Virgin and they said "oh dear, this is not commercial at all.  There's
no singles on it."  We said "well, er, we did our best!"  and they told
us to go away and write some more tracks.  So I, very despondently,
came up with "Great Fire."  Which they loved, they said it would be a
big-selling single.  So they put it out, and it flopped.
   After that, we remixed four songs, because we hadn't gotten along
with (producer) Steve Nye.  He kept trying to "produce" us, and we
don't need "producing"--all we need is someone to capture it.  He kept
telling us "that's a lousy line, go play something else"-- and we were
getting depressed about it, someone was breaking our music up right
before our eyes.  So we put the album back together, took it back to
Virgin, and said "look, we're very happy with this--_please_ put it
out."  So they sat on it for another six months, and reluctantly agreed
to let it escape.  It came out to a flurry of non-promotion.

   A: Even though the first reviews were very positive . . .

   P: Oh yes, the critics tend to love the shit out of us.  And we were
so despondent, because Virgin didn't promote it at all.  Meanwhile Epic
in the States said, 'well, you're right Virgin, this certainly isn't an
album to release in America'--and they promptly dropped the band.  It
took us this long to find somebody who'd release it.  A tough old road!

   A: Does it get frustrating, to get so acclaimed and not do well on
the charts?

   P: Incredibly frustrating.  I keep thinking 'hell, what's wrong with
us?  They're playing the most banal stuff in the world, and yet they
won't play us.'  I have this suspicion that's been increasing over the
years--you know, that maybe someone's got it in for us.

                           *   *   *

                     == End Part 1 of 3 ==


Date: Thu, 14 Jul 94 09:14:33 EDT
Subject: Re: Chalkhills #361

> It's interesting to ponder that XTC pre-empted the current acoustic guitar
> fad by several years (love on a farm boys wages, us radio tour).

Nah, the Grateful Dead prempted XTC by several years (American Beauty, etc).


Date: Thu, 14 Jul 1994 13:11:17 -0700 (PDT)
From: Wendi Dunlap <>
Subject: KABL?

Mike McCormick said:

> P.P.S. The XTC appearance here in Mpls was indeed on KTCZ, The Cities 97
> FM, and not on KABL as someone else suggested.  I have a
> direct-from-radio tape of the boys singing "Mayor of Simpleton".  And
> from what I've heard on the O&L radio tour bootlegs (oops, I said that
> "B" word!) it was among their prettiest renditions of the whole tour.  I
> sure didn't know they stopped for dinner at Sri Lanka Curry House though!
> Did someone say he dined with them there??

I believe they appeared at both stations, as someone else stated in here.
Cities 97 would seem to be appropriate, as well as KABL (which was the
only alternative station in Mpls at the time, though it was cable-only).
I still have a bunch of tapes of my radio shows at KABL; I miss working
there. <sigh>

Wendi A. Dunlap * * Seattle, Washington
Sysop, Slumberland BBS * (206)547-2629 * 24 hours a day * 3/12/24/96
Currently listening to: "This Is The Modern World" -- The Jam
*^*^ Finger for my current resume *^*^


Date: 14 Jul 1994 17:32:16 -0800
From: "Steve Krause" <>
Subject: Re: Chalkhills #361

Andy is quoted in Chalkhills #361 as saying:

> I'm working on material for our next album.  It comes off the branch
> line of "Rook," "Wrapped in Grey," and "Bungalow" [from Nonesuch].
> We're moving away from standard rock 'n' roll -- it's nowhere
> near the "Peter Pumpkinhead"-"Crocodile" line.  Colin is writing and
> I have six demos and three or four in the head....I don't plan to have
> drums on the new album.  The propulsion would come from the feel of
> the instruments.  At the moment -- I hate to say it -- it's mostly
> orchestral.

If the record company doesn't strangle this in the cradle, it could
well be very interesting.


Steve Krause, Media Futures Program            phone: +1 415 859 4746
SRI International, Menlo Park, CA


Date: Thu, 14 Jul 1994 17:30:42 -0700
From: (Brad Waddell)
Subject: New XTC album

Hi XTC fans.

Although this does not match what others have been saying about
the next XTC release, I thought it was interesting anyway:

ZON Fax update (radio station fax news) Phoenix AZ:

"XTC will complete their contract with Virgin with a forthcoming
double singles compilation featuring much previously un-released
material. Leader Andy Partridge says that the album may only
appear in the US on geffen, and that the band are writing for a
new studio set. The release of some XTC radio sessions is also
planned on Strange Fruit"

Any confirmations here?

Brad Waddell - FLEXquarters  | "I used to work in the factory where
Software Developer           | they make hydrants. You couldn't park
Commodity Trader             | anywhere NEAR the place." - Wright


Date: 14 Jul 94 22:31:26 EDT
From: Steve Levenstein <>
Subject: real Dukes influences

   Hi All; now continuing with The Little Express's interview with
XTC about 25 o'Clock...

ANDY: Flipping the disc right over, we have side 2, track 1,
"What In The World", and would you like to tell your captive
audience about this, Colin?

COLIN: What is there to tell, really? I had this track hanging
about, didn't know what to do with it, so we just altered it
slightly and I don't would you describe it?

DAVE: It's a good song, it should have been a single 'cause it's
probably the most instantly hummable of all the tracks.

COLIN: We psychedelicised it.

DAVE: Yes, it's a bit long actually in it's present form, but we
thought we've got to fit up a side somehow!

COLIN: It's really a 2-minute pop song that we enlarged; it got
out of hand and went to about six minutes full of backwards sounds.

ANDY: I did like the tape effects and it's probably got the most
sensible lyric on the whole record as opposed to the others
which were written for a "silly" effect!

COLIN: It was hanging about on tape for a long time.

ANDY: In fact it was sort of an XTC potential, wasn't it? "Cause
you brought up another one called "Big Day" which I thought was
far too good and not "67 period" enough to use on 25 O'Clock, so
I think it's going to be one of the main songs on the next XTC

   ...and so it was!     ---> Steve


Date: Fri, 15 Jul 94 12:00:36 EST
From: (Robert Stacy)
Subject: obscure XTC sightings

   Okay, I'm probably overstating the case a little in the subject line
-- obscure reference would probably be more apropos.
   At any rate, in the current issue of _Asimov's Science Fiction_
magazine (September '94), there's a novelette by R. V. Branham titled
"Apocolypse's Children."  It's set in a near-future LA, and at one
point, on pg. 81, the title protagonists visit a laboratory just off
the Cal Tech campus that's in two sealed-off lower floors of an
underground parking garage.  Branham then offers a list of the
"ancient graffiti on the cinderblock walls," and I'll give you one
guess what band name is at the top of the list.  A nice touch, I



From: Dave Franson <>
Subject: Nihilon, XTC Capital, New Poster, Pre-English Settlement
Date: Sat, 16 Jul 1994 10:38:46 -0400 (EDT)

The Banjo of Doom <> writes re: Travels in Nihilon:

   I finally, after years of stubbornness, bought _Black_Sea_ on
   disc, and I realized that the sound at the end of "Nihilon"
   which I always took to be rain, actually sounds more like a
   faucet, or rather a spigot on concrete or something.

   That sort of changes things, doesn't  it?  I mean, rain is
   traditionally a positive symbol, cleansing and rebirth and all
   that, but a spigot on concrete is a pretty spare and solitary
   image.  I always thought of the rain like gray and cold coming
   out of this bleak song, but with an overtone of hope, which is
   a good note to end an album with, almost like a surprise.

Then John Relph responds:

   Yeah, it's actually the sound of water on a shower curtain in a
   bathroom at The Manor.  There's a segment from _XTC At The Manor_
   (I believe) where they talk about that sound.  It was supposed to
   sound like rain, a rain that pours around you, grey, dismal,
   without hope.  But some people thought it sounded like a man using
   a urinal.  Especially since it has that bathroom ambiance.

... and I respond that I'm a little confused as to where Melinda now stands
(I think she has given up on the rain as redemption theory), but what I
really want to say is that this dandy bit of vitriol should be taken for
what it is-- an unambiguous slam against knawing on the bone of pop culture
for sustenance.  I listened to "Nihilon" again tonight on CD, having
subscribed myself to the urinal intrepretation, but I can't say that I can
quite hear that.  A shower springs much more to mind, a perpetual shower
that doesn't cleanse the grime and dirt.

ghanley <> writes:

   But as far as underexposed albums goes...

   What I really wanted to mention was Richard Thompson's _Mirror Blue_.
   This disk is incredible, and I just can't seem to get tired of it. It's
   been on my CD players for almost three months straight, and I'm still loving
   it. Please, if you buy anything this year, do yourself a favor and buy this
   disk. You won't be difappointed! :)

Yes, "Mirror Blue" is a wonderful album.  In particular, the stark "Mingus
Eyes" gets me every time.  Dean Zemel posted a great review of Thompson's
Milwaukee show several months back-- you may want to check out Dean's
comments in the archives in case you missed that particular digest.  Also,
Thompson appeared on Terry Gross' "Fresh Air" NPR talk show to promote the
"Mirror Blue" CD.  He performed several songs from it and "Rumor and Sigh"
live in the studio. writes:

   ... I am starting to wonder if maybe the Twin Cities (and not Madison,
   Wisc) is the true XTC capital of America!  I've lived both here & in
   Madison, so either way I
   can't lose.  Maybe the next XTC Convention should be halfway in between
    -- that would probably be the sleepy little town of Black River Falls,

Hey, wait a minute!  The XTC capital of America is Milwaukee, and it also
lies between Madison and Chicago!  (Come to think of it, Black River Falls
would lend a certain rustic charm!) (Jim) writes:
   Subject: First posting by XTC fan

   Sooooo anyway, ES was the first album I'd bought that was
   actually current with it's release. But, just as I'd come to
   understand XTC's language, they changed their lexicon! It was
   difficult at first( as any adaptation for the better should be) to
   hear this music as part of the same band's collection. It was so
   much more 'mature'( though I hate to use that word, it really
   fits). And not just sonically. Compositionally, too. These songs
   were tremendous departures from form.

Wow, great introductory post, Jim!  Your "how I found XTC" story is very
similar to my own.  I have this tremendous fear that one of these days I'm
going to meet my complete doppelganger on the net!  Anyway, the reason I
quoted the above passage is that it is interesting to remember back to those
days when one wondered "Hey!  I don't know if I really like this stuff as
much as the earlier albums" when listening to what are now regarded as XTC
classics, particularly "English Settlement."  I mean, is it just me, or is
the beloved "Senses Working Overtime" simply a reworking of "Respecable
Street" musically?  The pre-"ES" period was interesting-- you had two albums
of intelligent pop in "White Noise" and "Go2," and two albums of some sort of
strange mutation in "Drums & Wires" and "Black Sea."  Some days the earlier
two were dead on, some days the latter two sounded like the future of rock
'n roll.  (And before I forget, THANK YOU to the chalkhillian who posted that
wonderful defense of "White Music" a couple months ago-- it was heartfelt
and dead on!)  But in the end, XTC's changes in direction have certainly
borne ample fruit.  But the "real" XTC didn't start with "English
Settlement."  Or even "Drums & Wires."  It's all been there from "White
Music" on.

   I must let everyone know that I have been genetically altered
   in such a way that it is impossible for me to be brief when
   writing. I just kind of get lost in my own words. It's not
   pomposity that makes me do this. I have no control.
   Oh well. Gotta go. Time for my meds.

This seems to be a major epidemic on the net.



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The blood is running down the gutter / While you're yawning, nothing's said 

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