Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #386

              Chalkhills Digest, Number 386

                Wednesday, 19 October 1994

Today's Topics:
             Re: Ultradisc of ES, not Skylrk
                   Bungled Oh - pening
                     Hello to you all
          Isn't the new (old) stuff almost out?
                        Newbie fan
                  RE: What is a "hook?"
                Re: Chalkhills Digest #385
                     the covers game
               introductions & salutations
         XTC - Drums & Wireless (new XTC release)
                    black sea cd quirk
                      playing hooky
                       cds for sale
                    Re:What is a hook?


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Date: Mon, 17 Oct 94 10:08:20 PDT
From: John Relph <>
Subject: Re: Ultradisc of ES, not Skylrk

Brandon K Snavely <> writes:
>  ES is in GREAT need of remastering; the Geffen USA release
>is full of hiss and the recording level is low.  You can especially hear
>this on Waxworks, as the recording quality decreases and the hiss
>increases from "Sgt. Rock" to "Senses WO".

Let's get something straight between us: the versions of "Sgt. Rock"
and "Senses" used on the _Waxworks_ collection are the SINGLE
versions.  They have been edited (missing two of my favourite lines in
"Senses") and thus are at least one more tape generation removed from
the original album masters.  I would be willing to bet that THAT is
the source of the additional noise.

        -- John


From: Tim Szeliga <>
Subject: Bungled Oh - pening
Date: Mon, 17 Oct 94 12:33:48 CDT

Other than that really horrid opening  "Bungggggg gallow", repeated
toward the end, its not a bad song, merely horribly arranged.  Don't know
whether the blame goes to Moulding, Partridge or Dudgeon.

The chord progression is quite nice, leading to "saving it it all up for you".
Maybe an Unplugged version would be better.

Tim Szeliga


Date: Mon, 17 Oct 1994 13:12:55 -0600
From: (Patrick Hawley)
Subject: Hello to you all

I'm very happy to be a part of the XTC group.  Any carrying on about them
 from me would be quite redundant, I'm sure, so just let me say that I look
forward to every "Issue" of Chalkhills and to your stunning insight and
attention to detail- as well as very objective discussions.



Date:         Mon, 17 Oct 94 14:06:15 EDT
Subject:      Isn't the new (old) stuff almost out?

Didn't someone say the new CD would be out in October?  Or was it November?
Forgive me, I forget, and I would rather not miss it... even tho' it's
just gonna be old stuff.

On an unrelated note, the one non-standard non-album XTC item I have
ever purchased (I being rather miserly in character, I suppose) is the
CD single of Peter Pumpkinhead.  To be honest, I was dissapointed,
as the CD had only one track I hadn't heard - Always Winter Never Xmas
(demo), which was ok but hardly enough to justify 7 bucks.  There
was also the demo of My Bird, and the album version of Smartest Monkeys
(I was hoping for the Jam & Lewis remix ;) , but again, I wasn't
quite thrilled.  I am assuming that it is about the least rare piece
of material by XTC (and thus the least valuable trade bait).

As such, I have not bought other singles.  Still I feel unfulfilled.
What else is out there that I _must_ acquire?  What songs am I missing
big by owning only the albums?  And how do I get 'em?  Boy, let's face
it, I'm dying for some new material by Our Heroes... I'd probably pay
25 bucks for the next new album.  Oops, I hope they aren't reading this...

-pete dresslar
wayne state university
in the heart of detroit, michigan *zing* whew, that bullet was close...


Date: Mon, 17 Oct 1994 14:39:26 -0400
Subject: Greetings!

Greetings from Oakland, Cantaffordyuh!

I just joined Chalkhills  so here's my intro letter.   I first heard  of XTC
in 1982 when from some friends of mine in  Montana  (where I grew up) had a
band that  played Respectable Street.  I was intrigued by Black Sea's and Go
2's album covers.  I took a while, but I fell in love with GO2, then the
rest.  They've been my favorite band  ever since (and  I'm certain always
will be)

Perhaps this is a controversial suggestion, but in a way I have some hopes
that XTC would call it quits.  You know, quit while they're ahead.   Don't
get me wrong, I like  O & L and Nonsuch,  and  I like how they've "grown"
over the years, but they have  put out a few less than brilliant songs
(Bungalow, Rook) and tend to be  too  "clean & perfect" as  to lose some of
their soul .  I'm sure I'll  love them forever and continue to buy everything
they put out but I like the fact that they are exploring side projects more
than ever.  I really like the Martin Newell thing.  I just don't want  them
to become tainted like  Gang of Four or The Clash have been for me.


From: ST67S@Jetson.UH.EDU
Date: Mon, 17 Oct 1994 13:59:25 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: Newbie fan

Hello from a citizen of Simpleton:

        I hope this little message comes as no intrusion, but in
case it does, I will try to keep it short.  I read about Chalkhills
in a book called the NetGuide, which hypes itself as a TV guide to
"what's on in the net!".  So far, few of the addresses I've tried
are still in service I haven't tried that many yet).
(I haven't tried that many yet).
        I am very happy that this one is, since I have little or
no access to info on the group and can't seem to find any bootlegs
out where I live (not surprising, I guess, considering AP's refusal
to play live, but nevertheless, I can't find any old stuff either).
        I became fascinated by XTC after hearing (Horrors!) Dear God.
I realize that to many casual listeners, this is the only bloody
song likely to be associated instantly with the band.  But hey,
It doesn't matter whether you get to heaven on a crowded bus or
by taxi, the point is, you still get there.
        Thanks for reading my windy intro.  I look forward
to sifting thru the digest and getting to know my new comrades.



Date: Mon, 17 Oct 1994 13:21:49 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: RE: What is a "hook?"

Sir Greg:
A "hook" is a repeated series of a couple notes, over similar,
identical, or completely different harmonies. (Who's the music major
;) )  In XTC-esque terms, listen to "Life Begins at the Hop," and
early (and fairly rudimentary) example of a "hook" or "riff."  The
beginning lead guitar is only three notes, but it's genius.  "No Thugs
in Our House," "My Bird Performs," and frankly, most of Andy's songs,
use hooks.  Hope I could be of help.

-Brian Shipkin

"And how they'll be jealous of both of us..."


Date: Mon, 17 Oct 94 14:29 EST
From: Jeffrey Langr <>
Subject: Re: Chalkhills Digest #385

From: Steve Levenstein <>:
SL>    It's an elaborate production for a 7-inch single (VS 490),
SL> and on the Bee side you get "Chain of Command", "Limelight", and
SL> "Over Rusty Water". Ahhh, those were the days... XTC has put out
SL> more neat singles then any other band, am I wrong?

That's one of my favorite 7" packagings.  I wish they'd release all these 7"
singles as CD-3's (or even CD-5 singles), though, with as close to the
original packaging as possible.  Maybe a great idea for a "boxed set"; I'd
certainly pay top dollar.  The Senses Working Overtime CD-3 was a nice start
but looks to be one of only a few of its kind (along with The Loving, Mayor
of Simpleton, and the O&L cigarette pack).  Another favorite is the Sgt.
Rock foldout sleeve with poster of XTC on one side and Sgt. Rock cartoon
with lyrics on the other.

The Stranglers are another group who spent a lot of time on their 7"
packagings.  I had to give up when they started issuing the picture discs in
the shapes of things; it got way too expensive ($10 and up per disc).  But,
some of the best Stranglers stuff came on the B-Sides of these 7", just like
XTC.  "Strange Little Girl" is perhaps the best example of such.  Anyone
belong to the SIS?

P.S. -- I stopped listening to the Stranglers a while ago after "10" came
out.  I know they came out with an album after that, but was it any good?


Date: Mon, 17 Oct 1994 17:38:47 -0700 (PDT)
From: Paul Pearson <>
Subject: Hooks

A hook is just a recurring musical passage that reappears throughout a
popular song.  It's not an "official" musical term.  It's called a "hook"
because it's supposed to be the part that listeners remember the most.
Usually it refers to the chorus or refrain of the song, if it's catchy
enough.  The term "hook" was basically an invention of Tin Pan Alley or
Brill Building songwriters, who wrote hooks for money.  The term isn't
used as cynically as it used to be.

Easily graspable ideas of hooks in XTC's music (well, I remember them
anyway) would include the chorus of "You're the Wish You Are I Had,"
where Andy sings the song title.  "Making Plans for Nigel" as well--
except in that case, the hook actually exists in the "verse" right off
the bat ("We're only making plans...for Nigel.").  It isn't actually in
the chorus of the song ("Nigel," in fact, doesn't really have a chorus).

Since it's a subjective term there's no set definition for a
"hook": it can be a restatement of the title in a chorus or just an
attractive melody designed to be remembered and to bring it all together,
like the phrase in "Pumpkinhead" that begins, "But he made too many
enemies...".  Generally, it should suffice to say that a hook is just the
most memorable refrain or melody in a song.

Hope this helps.  God but I feel so much clearer myself...bye.

Paul KAOS FM Olympia washington


Date: Mon, 17 Oct 94 18:19:01 CST
Subject: Bungalow

Pardon me if this was already sent...

John Pidgeon asks:

>Does anyone else like "Bungalow"?

And Bil White said:
>Bungalow always brings back happy memories of going to the beach in
>the springtime when it's chilly and a bit damp. Plus it's got a lovely
>melody, and groovy sound effects. And it's short. Y'all need to go to
>Delaware in March sometime--then you'll love Bungalow. I know I do.

Well, let me add my name to the list of sentimental fools rising in defense
of "Bungalow."  Frankly, I think it's about the only listenable thing Colin
Moulding wrote for "Nonsuch."  But beyond that, it reminds me of a time that
has come and gone, and of regret.

A few years ago, I had a girlfriend whose family had a wonderful log cottage
on a lake in northern Wisconsin.  Her father had built it himself, and it
was packed full of their very precious memories.  The place had electricity
and a party-line rotary dial telephone, but running water only in the
summer. It was heated by an old fuel oil stove and a wood-burning stove.
The fact that her father died of cancer not long after I started seeing her
made it all the more plaintive.  It was a wonderful place to spend a
weekend -- rustic and quiet.

She's gone now, but I still miss that bungalow.

Ed Treleven


Date: Mon, 17 Oct 1994 19:40:56 -0700 (PDT)
From: Paul Pearson <>
Subject: Bungalow

When I first heard it I thought it was E.L.O. all grown up.  But if you
listen closely to it (subscribers from U.K. back me up on this), it
definitely sounds like a recording you'd hear on a soundtrack album for a
tacky, melodramatic British soap opera miniseries, like the original
"She-Devil."  Colin's singing is way too over-the-top, especially on the
bridge, for it to be serious.  I always thought it was a semi-parody;
not complete buffoonery but satire I guess.  It also reminds me a little
bit of Burt Bacharach so that might tell you something about the social
context (bored suburbanite husbands and housewives).  It's slight but
it's not as empty-headed as it might seem upon first hearing.

Beats the living hell out of CSN's "Our House."  But then most everything

Paul pearson
kaos olympia


Date: Tue, 18 Oct 1994 01:02:51 -0700
From: Kevin Carhart <>
Subject: the covers game

Who should cover XTC?  I will put into this game... lets see..

The Cocteau Twins should cover When We Get to England
Elvis Costello should cover Another Satellite
the Moody Blues should cover The Good Things (Justin should sing)
The entire White Music CD should be covered by the Toy Dolls
Swoon-era Prefab Sprout should cover that Playground Empire song
(you'll never da da da unless you do as you're told , you wouldn't understand
it being 14 years old....)
The Golden Dawn, or the Field Mice, or just about anyone from Sarah
Records should cover Wonderland
Lois should cover Let's Make a Den
What if Duran Duran recorded Mayor of Simpleton?
there are more but I can't think of them


Date: Tue, 18 Oct 1994 04:28:34 -0500 (CDT)
From: Dusti Renee Worley <>
Subject: subscriber

My name is Dusti Renee Worley, writer and college student in Montgomery,
AL. I'm 18 and discovered XTC when I was about 13, but I have to be
honest and say I don't know THAT much about them.  Others I'm into are
Tori Amos, Pop Will Eat Itself, This Mortal Coil, good techno, ambient
music, and Erasure.  Hope to learn about XTC beyond "Oranges and Lemons"


Date: 18 Oct 1994 08:27:30 U
From: "Wesley Wilson" <>
Subject: Bungalow

In the last thrilling installment of Chalkhills, John Pidgeon asked if maybe
anyone else likes "Bungalow."

YES! Once again Colin flatly exposes the emptiness of today's work-obsessed
crowd. The arrangement reminds me of something from a radio soap opera from
the 1930's. "Yes, folks, welcome once again to another episode dealing with
our favourite dysfunctional British middle working class family:
Bunnnnnngalllow...(insert cheesy keyboard chord). This week we'll find out if
Charles really meant it when, on last week's episode, he told Diana he never
loved her."

By the way, over the weekend I sent away for the XTC BBC Vol Two,
a mere $22.45.


P.S. Psssst! If any fans of the band, uh..."Rulb" (yeah, that's the ticket!)
want to trade tapes (B-sides, bonus tracks) let me know what you have.

"JUPITER RADIOS EARTH FOR HELP!" - Weekly World News, August 1994


Date: Tue, 18 Oct 94 09:58:22 EST
From: (Alan F. Cunningham)
Organization: Project LearnLink - Emory University
Subject: introductions & salutations


OK here is the humble intro of a bio major trying to get
into graduate school(why do you think I got E-mail).  I'm from the Atlanta
area, my favorite things are my bike, certain local restaurants, landscape
ecology, animaniacs, XTC, Tom Waits, Prince(or 0(->, but I just read
it "prince")and Macs(I'm addicted, by god)

I first was introduced to XTC by a friend of mine
I was in a band with in high school(he played drums &
guitar, I was lead mouth and girly scream).  Our favorite album
of the year came to be Oranges & Lemons, with my absolute favorite
track being poor skeleton steps out.  This was the same guy who
introduced me th Tom Waits, but I digress.

My musical ability has declined through college(a couple of
colds and I couldn't even scream properly anymore), but my
appreciation of XTC has grown, especially from the mid
eighties with Big Express and Skylarking.  The list already has clued
me in on some things I didn't know of, so I thank you.

Alan F. Cunningham


/========/   LearnLink: Expanding Educational Horizons
 !! !! !!    Internet/Telnet:
 !! !! !!    For information, mail
/========/   "Minds are like parachutes, they must be open to function."


Date: Tue, 18 Oct 1994 14:57:59 +0100 (BST)
From: "W.J. Jillians" <>
Subject: Intro

Hello Chalkhillians,
    I just wanted to say hello after having lurked anonymously reading
the newsletter for the past month.  Any prizes for anyone who has been
into XTC the longest?  It won't be me but I did here them in session on
the John Peel show late nights before or about the time that "White
Music" came out so I feel like one of the elder statesmen of the conference.
I've been a fan on and off for a few years since, but seeing this listing
just got me going and wanting to find out what had happened to them in
the years since.  My last contact was buying "Oranges and Lemons" and
I haven't heard about them since.

    Thanks for getting me back up to date.  I'll look out for "Nonesuch"
if people say its a good album.

Bill Jillians                                         Dept. of Marine Tech.                             Univ. of Newcastle, U.K.
    In absence of a tag-line this space is left intentionally blank.


Date: Tue, 18 Oct 94 15:11 BST-1
From: (Psion plc  Joe Odukoya)
Subject: XTC - Drums & Wireless (new XTC release)

Stop press-
I've just bought the XTC radio sessions CD
Here is a complete track listing
1.  Opening Speech
2.  No Thugs...
3.  Runaways
4.  You're the wish...
5.  Poor Skelton...
6.  Crosswires
7.  Seagulls Screaming
8.  Real by Real
9.  Into the Atom Age
10. Meccanik Dancing
11. Ten Feet Tall
12. Scarecrow people
13. I'm Bugged
14. Dance Band
15. Jason and the Argonauts
16. One of the Millions
17. Roads Girdle...

(I presume you can all fill in the dotted bits yourselves).
Only cost 10.99 - fairly cheap for the UK. However I can't help wishing
they had gone for a doublr CD and thrown everything on it. Still, I
haven't listened to it yet so I shall have to see what delights await me.
- Joeo -


Date:         Tue, 18 Oct 94 11:49:23 EDT
From: Peter Dresslar <PDRESSL@CMS.CC.WAYNE.EDU>
Subject:      black sea cd quirk

First of all, forgive me for posting again, and second of all, forgive
me if this is a long dead and forgotten issue, but...

Has anyone noticed that the back cover of their _Black Sea_ CD lists
play lengths for all the songs except Travels in Nihilon?  Kinda strange,
as you would think someone would have noticed, since it looks so
unbalanced.  Although it did take me a year to notice myself...

For the sake of clarity: my copy is the 1987 US re-release (I think).
"Uni Distribution Corp. (c) 1987 Virgin Records..."  GEFD-24376

Hardly important, I know, but what the hey...    :-) pete


Date: Tue, 18 Oct 94 12:00:40 EST
From: (Robert Stacy)
Subject: playing hooky

> This is a term I'd like to be able to use.  It seems handy.  Is it a
> technical musical term?

   It's a part of most pop songs, usually in the first few bars,
intended to set itself in your brain and reel you in.  Like those four,
thick chords in Fine Young Cannibals' "She Drives Me Crazy," or (sorry,
what was I thinking?) -- more close to home -- the intro guitar line to
"Generals and Majors," or the opening (dis)chords to "Respectable
Street," or the bendy-line to "Towers of London," or that power guitar
intro to "No Thugs" that plays its anger and frustration out against
the aaaghs.  Andy and Dave are masters at this sort of thing.
   To broaden into analogy, it serves the same purpose as the opening
sentence of a good short story.  Snag the reader's interest and don't
let go.  The songwriter must make the listener implicitly believe there
is nowhere else her attention would rather be than listening to that



Date: Tue, 18 Oct 1994 20:39:06 -0400 (EDT)
From: Anthony Tanael <>
Subject: cds for sale

hi there! ive got a few cds that id like to sell to anyone interested:

1) king for a day cd single (4 tracks: czar mix, versailles mix, toys and
     desert island) (20:44)

2) xtc acoustic tales (16 tracks (some are medleys of 2 or 3 songs) (62:39)

3) xtc this is live (12 tracks at hammersmith odeon, london, feb 1981)

if you have any questions about these or would like a track listing or if
youd like to make me an offer, then just email me. thanks!



Date: Tue, 18 Oct 94 22:29:27 EDT
From: (John Pidgeon)
Subject: introduction

Hello to Everyone at Chalkhills,

I am very excited to be on this digest.
I have been a XTC fan for a long time. In fact, Drums and Wires was the
first album I ever had (and it was a birthday present.)

take care
John Pidgeon
Toronto, Canada


Date: Tue, 18 Oct 94 22:32:41 EDT
From: (John Pidgeon)
Subject: undercover

I can't quite think of anyone doing covers of XTC. But how about this as a
thought...On the next Frank Sintara duets record, good old blue eyes is
accompanied by Andy Partridge. Any suggestions on what might be a fitting

John Pidgeon


Date: Wed, 19 Oct 1994 06:34:43 -0400
Subject: XTC/ecstasy

It should be pointed out that when XTC started in 1978 or so, the drug
Ecstasy  did not exist, so don't go thinking the band is named after the

Curtiss Hammock


Date: Wed, 19 Oct 1994 06:35:06 -0400
Subject: Re:What is a hook?

You'll probably get a couple of replies to this, but just in case:

A hook is the "catchy" part of a song, usually the refrain.  Many XTC songs
are "interesting" (musically speaking, and meaning less accessible) during
the verses, then quite catchy during the refrain.  If a song doesn't do
anything for most people, it is said not to have a hook.

A poor job of explaining, but I hope it helps.

Curtiss Hammock


End of Chalkhills Digest #386

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