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From: Chalkhills <>
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #12-51

         Chalkhills Digest, Volume 12, Number 51

                 Sunday, 22 October 2006


                 The Tower has fallen...
                       Brand X(TC)
           Re: FW box & XTC without Colin, etc.
                    One Way Ownership
                    The Poor Richards
               XTC is dead. Long live XTC.
                       BEANZ MEANZ-


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Air leaving slow.


Date: Sun, 15 Oct 2006 12:01:27 -0700
From: "Wayne Klein" <>
Subject: The Tower has fallen...
Message-ID: <BAY108-F16DFF4272C2F84B044B4B3F9080@phx.gbl>

As with all retail giants specializing in music, movies, etc. Tower finally
fell to the ground with a thud. Very sad indeed. While their pricing could
have been better it was one of the few places where you could find catalog

RIP's a pity the company wasn't managed better.


Date: Mon, 16 Oct 2006 13:12:26 -0700 (PDT)
From: Todd Bernhardt <>
Subject: Brand X(TC)
Message-ID: <>


Dave in Det-riot asked:
> Was there some notice, discussion, conversation or
> other confirmation that XTC is now just Andy, and he
> might just do solo work?

Nope ... XTC isn't just Andy. The point I was trying to make (poorly)
is that this is because the band simply doesn't exist as a legal
entity without *both* Andy and Colin. So, you won't see any albums
under that name without the involvement of both of them. When and if
that happens is anyone's guess! XTC is the anti-band, remember? They
zag when you want them to zig ... 'twas ever thus.


When you think of the long and gloomy history of man, you will find
more hideous crimes have been committed in the name of obedience than
have ever been committed in the name of rebellion.
  C.P. Snow, scientist and writer (1905-1980)


Date: Tue, 17 Oct 2006 13:35:28 -0700 (PDT)
From: The Colonel <>
Subject: Re: FW box & XTC without Colin, etc.
Message-ID: <>

> What are the chances there will be, on *Fuzzy
> Warbles Volume 9*, songs titled "... All I Want" and
> "Zymurgist's Blues"?

Longtime lurker, very rare poster.

There IS a volume 9... It's called "Hinges." ;)

Just got my box, btw, and I'm very happy with it. In
fact, I've already condensed the best of the
previously unreleased contributions onto a 2-disc best
of (minus the experimental instros, which will be
compiled on a single disc later). Maybe do the same
thing with the better XTC demos at some point, but
really many of them aren't that different.

With regard to a non-Colin XTC, I could never see Andy
doing XTC without Colin. Not that he has contributed
that much recently, but c'mon if Colin's involvement
wasn't an issue, the Fuzzy Warbles collections
would've been released as XTC demo collections as
originally planned. The fact that they were released
as Andy Partridge collections alone confirms that
there would be no XTC "brand" without Colin's
involvement. They are the two original members of the
band from the 70's. A non-Colin XTC just ain't gonna
happen. It'll sooner by an Andy solo record.

-The Colonel


Date: Thu, 19 Oct 2006 11:35:56 +1000
From: "Simon Knight" <>
Subject: One Way Ownership
Message-ID: <BAY109-F268A0E75CBD02E1B210E59D00C0@phx.gbl>

>If you "sample" an actual Beatles recording, that is a different
>thing from re-recording something yourself.  It requires permission
>and payment.  It doesn't matter if you sell your work or not.  You
>can't give away what doesn't belong to you.

But you can obviously sell, err, `lease' it to a consumer.

We're heading into the murky waters of intellectual theory, where sound
supposedly falls into the realm of things that no-one can truly own, but
still claims ownership for, like Water or Oil.

How about a record company claiming to own a sound recording that is
eventually paid for by the original artist anyway?  If the Beatles paid for
the recordings of their albums via their royalties, then why don't they own
them once the debts are paid, instead of having to currently fight to get
them back?  It's obviously a false loan.  EMI is claiming ownership of
something it has no right to, otherwise if they wanted ownership of the
recordings, they should have paid for it out of their own pocket and not
expect the artist to do so.

If record stores are only an intermediary in the `leasing' process, and
don't really `own' their stock, then why can't they return those mountainous
piles of unsold sophomore slump albums, (like Arrested Development's
`Zingalamaduni'), to the record company for full refunds?

Funnily enough, the record companies still expect you to make this purchase
based on the illusion that paying money for an item constituting ownership,
as in most other transactions.  If I am only `leasing' the `sound' on the
cds I buy, then why can't I request my money back when the music no longer
suits my needs if they technically still own it?  I have a pile of
ill-advised teenage purchases I'd part with - goodbye New Order, farewell
Stacey Q.

Do we need Tenant's rights?  What if the music simply isn't satisfying
enough, or if there's a stinker of a track on the CD?  Can I request a copy
of `The White Album' minus `Revolution 9'?  Can I return my Beatles CD's to
EMI and say they're liable to repair the sound quality because they're not
up to the standard I'd expect in this day and age?

Let's say I want the Paris Hilton album.  I know it's going to in no way be
of the same quality as the Beatles, yet they'll cost the same price.  Why
can't I barter what I think certain albums are worth?

I once bought a 7" vinyl copy of Whitney Houston's godawful `I Want To Dance
With Somebody' single, purely to melt it down into an ashtray for a mate.
So did I destroy the `delivery system for the sound recording', or if I'm
truly only leasing it, should I held accountable for arson?

Imagine buying an apple, but the being told that you are only leasing the
apple.  You can't slice it, cut it, or mix it with other ingredients.
Therefore, can you truly eat the apple, or will you live in fear that
they're going to send a nurse around with rubber gloves to demand it back,
saying you're abusing your rights?

If a sample a song and process it enough to make the sound sample into
something entirely different from the original sound recording, isn't it no
longer the same sound.  If no-one would recognize it, even the original
musicians, is it really theft?  Or does it only become theft once someone
notices and recognizes the sample?

Must go.  My cat, Schrodinger, wants some milk.


Date: Wed, 18 Oct 2006 22:55:42 -0700
From: "Pastula Aaron" <>
Subject: The Poor Richards
Message-ID: <BAY109-F4E7721526BF5F8A04C335A20C0@phx.gbl>

Not sure if this has been mentioned before, but I stumbled across a song
called "When Andy Partridge Called" on iTunes and it lead me here:

Apparently, Andy himself is a fan.  And apparently, according to the lyrics
of the song, which can be heard via a link from the above site, a call from
Andy Partridge is more exciting than a call from Paul McCartney.

Even though I've never had a call from either, I would agree.



Date: Fri, 20 Oct 2006 19:06:29 +0200
Subject: XTC is dead. Long live XTC.
Message-ID: <>

Hi, people of the 'Hills,

A lot of talk in the last few digests about XTC continuing or not, or
kicking Andy in the butt to get him going, or asking what Colin is
doing, or whether they're going to work with Dave again or not, or
whether Andy could record as XTC with Dave instead of Colin...

Todd B. cleared up the final questions with his comment that both
Colin and Andy own the name "XTC", while throwing in a teaser re. Andy
and Dave.  Leaves a lot of space for interpretation on the other

My take?  Look at what we've been seeing for years.  Andy is prolific,
seeming to write all sorts of stuff whenever he wants, or
collaborating, or writing with specific objectives in mind, etc.
Colin?  Yeah, 3 new songs of his appear in a relatively short time,
*but* at least 2 of them aren't really new, are they?  They're mostly
Nonsuch songs...  So what are the probable causes of our problems

1 [and the major reason]) Colin.  He has stopped working.  Perhaps he
believes he will continue one day, and is holding out because he has
the studio and he wants to wait until he is good and ready.  But
apparently, "Making Plans for Nigel" is a gold mine and he doesn't
need to.  Thus he *can* hold out.  See Todd's comments: XTC is

2) Andy.  This doesn't technically influence the release of a new
*XTC* record, but: He is afraid to go out there on his own.  Read his
comments over the years, look how he works.  He never walks alone.  He
has all the qualities of a person who has a lot of talent and wishes
everyone would see it and love him, but "needs protection", to quote
Andy's protector #1, to get himself out there.  Teams up with Colin,
Robyn, or half of the world rather than doing it on his own.  Like his
stage fright, this is a "good" thing for XTC purists, because he can't
do much XTCing per say without Colin (see "1" above).  But for people
who just want to see something coming from Swindon, it also means he
won't do much Partridging in his own pear tree if he has a choice.

What does this all mean?

I believe XTC as a new-music-producing entity is effectively over.

What could change this?

Either Colin could wake out of his sleep (chances extremely low) or he
could be awakened (chances higher).  But to have this happen, we might
have to see an empowered Andy to go out there on his own -- i.e. he
*does* have a choice -- which then again might kill XTC.

The scenarios could be thus:

If Andy wanted to make music but is stifled by Colin's inactivity and
unwillingness to allow Andy to at least hide himself and his solo work
behind the XTC name, then Colin would "win" as long as Andy continues
to have "solo (stage) fright".  That could very well be the end of

If, however, Andy gets over it and gets a solo record out there -- or
a record with Dave, for instance, under either Andy's name or another
one (how about just "Ex"?) -- then Andy will be heaped with praise,
everybody will love him, and -- as I am convinced would also happen
with his stage fright (whether he wants to believe it or not, I am
very certain) if he tried live performance again -- he would suddenly
see all that fear disappear, realizing that it was all based on false
assumptions and other conditions and other times.  And suddenly,
"Partridge is free!" headlines would be there in all major music
magazines over the reviews of his new solo album, "All Things Must

The success of such a venture could make Colin come out of his shell
and start working again.  But, once the dam is broken, can the water
be held in?  Don't know.  If Andy tastes success on his own, you at
least have to wonder why he would go back to the constraints of XTC.

* * * * *

I can still think of at least one more big open question: Why would
Andy, the most diplomatic and wonderful guy in the studio and in XTC
(just ask Colin, Dave, or even Andy), allow Colin to block him like
this?  Why is he not addressing the issue?  Or just flattening it like
a steamroller?  Is he just trying to cover for his old buddy?  Maybe.
Or maybe he's just hoping, waiting for a change there that will
prevent him from having to go out there all alone.  For me, the more
important question is, will his will to work create such a pressure
level on that dam that it breaks -- giving us new Andy material but
not new XTC material?  Or will Andy -- not the youngest guy any more,
much more susceptible now to "Momentum" (Aimee Mann) problems than at
a younger age -- allow the dam to hold him in?

Either way, it's bleak times for XTC, if you ask me.  Of course, I'd
love to be proven wrong.  But given the choice of something or
nothing, I'll take solo Andy.

I, the great Colin fan, defender of "Frivolous Tonight" and "Smartest
Monkeys", really had to strain to say that.  Strange days, indeed.

- Jeff


Date: Sat, 21 Oct 2006 06:58:15 +0100 (BST)
From: Paul Culnane <>
Message-ID: <>

Hey, that version of Human Beans by the Dukes on FW7 (bunga lo-fi),
while seemingly the same take as that on Steve Somerset's MS charity
"A Wish List" CD, is a radically different mix.  I prefer the Fuzzy
Warbles mix because it emphasises all the authentic Dukes' psych
hallmarks, like backwards and sitar-esque guitars, Dave's mellotron
and strange little noises and vocal touches.  They were buried in the
AWL mix, and I thought E.I.'s drums were mixed too loud on the latter

I'm digging "Sonic Boom".  Love it when Andy rocks out.  If, as he
says in the punningly tittersome liner notes, that it was a rejected
contender for both Nonsuch and later, Wasp Star, mainly due to being
"too ploddy and poor lyrically", all I can say is that it would have
made a worthy replacement for at least three other songs that did
actually make the cut for those albums.  And what's so poor about a
couplet like "well they're born old they won't understand / and they
don't seem to have the noise thrill gland"?

There's a wealth of other delights on these discs, but where I think
Mr Partridge really distinguishes himself, is with his stylish and
heartfelt ballads, especially those on FW8 (arthur lo-fi), like
"Through Electric Gardens", "The Bland Leading The Bland", "Was A Yes"
and so on.  He really knows what buttons to press (play?).

"I Don't Want To Be Here" (whichever version of the two that you may
prefer) has to be, along with "Ship Trapped In The Ice" and Colin's
"Where Did The Ordinary People Go?", among the most undervalued XTC
rejects the boys have come up with, I reckon.  Fabulous song!

If pressed to select a handful of standout favourite tracks from the
whole Warbly lot, for me it would be "My Land Is Burning" from FW5
(lo-fi nance).  That guitar solo is a man channeling PAIN.  Closely
followed by "End Of The Pier" - FW6 (lo-fi lo fax), "Everything
- FW1 (lo-fi fo fum), and "When We Get To England" - FW3 (look
out be lo-fi).  What are your faves, Chalkpeople?

Don't seem to be any easter egg hidden tracks on the two final FW
volumes, trainspotters.  And, move over Bob Ludwig, Ian Cooper is a
masterful genius.  Talk about sow's ear and silk purse!

Can anyone in the know (calling Todd B?) tell us whether Andy played
everything on Hinges?  I mean, the drums on "Happy Families" are most
accomplished, don't you think?

Phew, what an experience.  My warbles are all fuzzed out.  If you
consider yourself even half a fan, rob a bank and buy the Collector's
Box.  Get unhinged-


"The test as to whether your mission in life is finished?  If you're
still alive, it isn't" - Richard Bach

Paul Culnane
ICE Productions Australia


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