Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills #71

                  Chalkhills, Number 71

                 Friday, 8 December 1989
Today's Topics:
        Re: _English Settlement_ = XTC Conspiracy?
        People Don't Really Listen (Was Early XTC)
                     Making Plans...
                       XTC in dub?

Date: Mon, 4 Dec 1989 22:45:08 PST
From: John M. Relph <>
Subject: Re: _English Settlement_ = XTC Conspiracy?

Joe Lynn (oconnor!keaton! writes:
>	BTW, does anyone know who acted as XTC's "Dave Dexter" and
>	whittled _Settlement_ down to one LP?  I know CBS did it
>	to make the LP more 'accessible' to the US market...

Andy had this to say in the same interview that I quoted from
in Chalkhils #70 (_Progressive Media_, April 26, 1982):

      The U.S. pressing of _English Settlement_ is a single
    album as opposed to the two disc English release, a
    difference that has Partridge a bit nettled at their U.S.
    label Epic Records.  "I'm amazed that they trimmed it down
    -- I don't know why they did," he says.  "We asked them to
    sell it for the price of a single album because that's all
    it costs to make.  An actual plastic disc costs a few
    cents to produce, so I can't see what the difficulty was.
    I'd better not dwell on it too much," he sighs, "because
    it's a really touchy subject."

      "The American cover doesn't have the embossing, another
    point I'm really sore about," he adds.  "It looks
    decidedly dull.  I dont want to sound like I'm slagging
    CBS all the time, but I wish they'd just do what they're
    asked, actually.  I know I'm going to be apologizing all
    over America for the apparently substandard cover."


Date: Tue, 5 Dec 89 11:10:21 PST
From: (Why be a Starving Artist, when Computers can make you rich?)
Subject: People Don't Really Listen (Was Early XTC)

	First of all, any implied personal attacks here are all in the
	spirit of cheerful debate and not meant to be taken personally! (Ed Aubry) Sez:
>In Article 33498 (<1353@sas.UUCP>) of, bts@sas.UUCP
>(Brian T. Schellenberger) writes, concerning the album _Go 2_:
>>*ANYWAY*, the question is:  Was this, like, the worst album they ever made, so
>>that my giving up on early XTC was off-base?  Any guidelines from long-time
>>XTC fans appreciated.
>Not by a long shot.  Their worst album by far and away is White Music

	Good Lord, what are you people talking about?

	Those two albums are among the best EVER MADE.

	White music is the definitive punk-pop record of the era;
	a deceptively simple-sounding collections of songs about
	youth, music and angst.

	Go2 is a more pop-flavored version; a clear sequel to the
	first record that set up what was to become an XTC tradition
	of releasing a group of records along a sort of stylistic

	These records are filled with great power-pop; they have a
	feel of raw energy that XTC have not had since, and they
	contain what I still feel are some of Andy'd most
	interesting lyrics (though not his best)... They also are
	blessed by the crazed, frenetic presence of Barry Andrews,
	one of the people who made Shriekback a great band.

>first album, following their debut 3-D EP.  It is a mish-mash of experimental
>art-punk that is more a novelty item for XTC historians than a piece worth
>serious consideration.

	Try giving it a *real* listen. You're obviously dismissing it
	because of the *feel*. Tune in to it; some of those songs are
	as complicated as anything they've ever done, and they're
	played with phenomenal energy; listen to the harmonica in
	'All Along the Watchtower' (The definitive version of that
	song, by the way)...

>Their next album, Mummer, tries with mixed success to incorporate folk
>and jazz elements into their style.  It is with this album that the first
>hint of a strong Beatles influence emerges, as they
>include snippets of psychedelic ideas that are very remeniscent.
>Their next album, The Big Express, is a stronger work, and the Beatles
>influence truly begins to take hold.

	Oh, Come on... English Settlement is the one they first went
folky on... And they were playing 'beatles' games on the first two

>Then, of course, came Oranges and Lemons, probably their most experimental work

	Experimental? Yeah, like Phil Collins is experimental...

>  It is both too far in the weird direction and too near the mainstream.
>It is a good collection of songs, but as an album it lacks cohesiveness.

	No, No, No... The album is a collection of a few good songs
lost in a mess of bad songs and lame over-production. It's 'weird'
only to people who consider Depeche Mode a 'cutting edge' band...

		Ahhh..... I love a good debate about opinions!

	-Karl(Mr Opinion)MacRae

          Karl MacRae      
       Sun Microsystems, Milpitas, Ca. (The armpit of Silicon Valley)
       1550 Buckeye, Milpitas, CA 95035 Mailstop M21-25 (408)922-4996
       All The kids are complainin' 'cause there's nowhere to go-
       An' all the kids are complainin' 'cause the songs are too slow...
					-XTC, 'Radios in Motion'


From: sco!
Subject: Making Plans...
Date: Tue Dec  5 16:29:18 1989

I've been thinking recently that it's suprising that noone covers XTC songs
(except for Dave Stewart & Barbara Gaskin).  However, just last night
I was listening to the radio & heard a strange heavily-accented
female voice singing a song that sounded somehow familiar.  After a while
I noticed something about "Making Plans for..." something.  Finally, I
realized that the chord progression was the same as "Making Plans for
Nigel", but it definitely wasn't a straight cover; the melody only
occasionally matched up, and the lyrics had been changed quite a bit,
perhaps a semi-phonetic translation.

It turns out it was called "Making Plans for Bison", by the Japanese
group Shonen Knife.  It's from their album "Pretty Little Baka Guy",
which came out a few years ago.

-- Stewart


From: sco!
Subject: XTC in dub?
Date: Tue Dec  5 16:42:30 1989

Some people have questioned the description of "Go+" and "Take Away" as
dub.  Although they may not sound much like dub reggae, they are certainly
influenced by the techniques of dub as practiced by folks like Lee Perry
and Mad Professor -- that of treating the master tapes themselves like
instruments to be played, and of completely rearranging and remixing
tracks in a much more radical way than contemporary "dance remixes".

However, in the interview that John Relph just posted, the interviewer
refers to "Snowman" as "dub-inflected" or some such.  I have no idea
what they're on about.  Does anyone hear any dub influence in "Snowman"?

-- Stewart


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