Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #2-142

         Chalkhills Digest, Volume 2, Number 142

                  Tuesday, 30 July 1996

Today's Topics:

                  English Settlement LP
                 Sleeve art - what next?
         Threading Askew with the Bludgeoning Ubu
                    Some punny stuff!
            Re: Cast (was re: producer babble)
               Ha ha for head-hocking rorse
                 I'm not the sole fool...
                        XTC Video
              Against my better judgement...
                      Translator CD
                 Jellyfilled Swindonians
               Settlement once and for all
                     NO RECORD DEAL?


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Everybody walkie talkie.


Message-ID: <>
Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 01:37:20 -0700
From: T Lewis <>
Subject: English Settlement LP


Of possible interest to those who've been rhapsodizing about the vinyl
English Settlement...I stumbled over this on-line alternative record
store today called Vinyl Ink Records at:

And for what it's worth (I haven't done any business with them yet),
here's one of several entries under XTC:

TITLE:  English Settlement
DESCRIPTION:  Double lp in a textured sleeve
UK   LP   $20.00

They list tons of other groovy bands, as well.
T Lewis
PS: thanks to whomever first recommended the Sugarplastic, Self and
Yazbek. They've perked me up.
PPS [dead thread department]: How could we have forgotten "Monkey for
Nothing and the Chimps for Free"?


Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 12:44:20 +0100
Message-Id: <>
From: (Simon Sleightholm)
Subject: Sleeve art - what next?

First off, apologies for the length of this post.

It has often been said that XTC are an "imageless" band, but a study of
their sleeve artwork reveals that - rather like the bowler-hatted men in the
works of Magritte - XTC, under the guise of everyday normality, actually
reach into the realm of the surreal with a pleasing regularity. Consider the
alarm-clock headed man on the "Wake Up" sleeve against the "clock"-work of
Dali; or the blasted landscapes of "This World Over" against Munch's
"Scream". Like Gregg Toland's camerawork in Welles' "Citizen Kane", XTC
provide a world where everything is in focus, the depth follows through,
>from the sleeve to the disc, from the disc to the music and lyrics thereon.
We are drawn in, and held in place by the gravity of what we hear. Each of
us becomes another satellite.

Often accused of being too heavily drawn into pastiche, the artistry with
which XTC pull off their imitations supports the worthiness of the work.
Those who own the Dukes albums on vinyl will probaly agree that "25 O'Clock"
is a greater work, not only because of the music, but beacuse of the period
accuracy of the sleeve art. "Psonic Psunspot", although obviously suffering
since the "true" identity of the band was known, is all wrong. The music is
still valid, but the sleeve is incorrect, it is shiny where it should be
dull, it looks "cheap" in the wrong way, it undermines the brittle structure
of the pantomime and brings the scenery down with a crash, ripping off the
mummers' masks and denying the magic.

It must be said that the "art" of XTC comes from Andy alone - is P-ART-ridge
really his name?. Colin has admitted that "Fine art never moved my soul",
while Andy has embraced the art world and decked it with lyrical garlands -
"I push my paintbrush... it rains all the colours in my paintbox... your
heart is the big box of paints... a thousand melting Dali guitars... my
paint heroes... finger paint the sun on you... childrens chalk-lines on the
pavement" etc.

The best sleeve art of XTC has always complimented the music. "This World
Over" brings in a wryly amusing piece of juxtaposition with the inclusion of
a sharp, crisp image of Earth as seen from space on the flip; the sheer
simple beauty of it, so big and yet so vulnerable. We immediately feel small.

"Nonsuch" was a landmark in the evolution of XTC sleeve art. Up until then
the singles each had their own motif, and very rarely carried any of the
design theory from companion album - "Are you receiving me?" is a singular
exception. With "Nonsuch", the "house" style infused everything, from the
sleeves to the ad campaign. Andy even bought into it himself, never being
seen in the contemporary interviews without that great big floppy cap. The
individual track icons of course made this approach so simple - although the
whole feel seemed to have come from the "Mayor Of Simpleton" sleeve, and
lurched onwards to "A Testimonial Dinner" - but whether it was a good idea
or not is debatable. I cannot look at "The Disappointed"'s sleeve without
thinking of Bob Dylan discarding lyrics in that alleyway. Also I don't think
I needed pictures to help me get the songs - I abandoned "picture books"
years ago. Perhaps "Nonsuch" was too literal a design. The sleeve picture
was of a Tudor palace called, I believe, Nonsuch, so why underline it? "The
Big Express" didn't have a picture of a big train on it (the single steel
wheel is wonderfully emblematic), Drums and Wires wasn't covered in pictures
of Drums (or, indeed, wires), "Oranges and Lemons" did have the fruit on the
sleeve, but it was jazzy stylised fruit - the sort Tom might have thrown at
Jerry in the '50s. Until "Nonsuch" the sleeves and songs were recognisably
linked by lightly-stated thematic undertones. It seems that with "Nonsuch"
the band were so aware that that the songs were so disparate and
uncomfortable that they had to contrive a "theme", and that theme begat the
framing of each song within a pretty little icon, forcing us to accept as a
whole something that was so obviously a collection of parts.

Just as pungent smells (leather, sweat, baby oil) can bring back vivid
memories of certain people, sleeve art is inextricably linked to the swirl
of sound it conceals. Look at the aged wheel of "The Big Express" and you
immediately hear the engine sounds of "Train Running Slow..", study the
White Horse on "English Settlement" and you immediately hear the blackbirds
on "Senses..", caress the "Nonsuch" sleeve and you immediately try to forget
all of "The Smartest Monkeys".

Having abandoned the post-modern stare-outs of "White Music", "Go 2" and
"Drums And Wires", the sleeves of XTC albums have become more focused and
more indicative of the work they cradle. The band have already plundered the
sixties (O&L), the Tudor period (Nonsuch), Victorian times (Black Sea/Big
Express), mythology (Skylarking), the Middle Ages (Mummer) and ancient times
(English Settlement). I wonder, anually, when the rumours of new XTC work
surfaces, what the album will *feel* like, and I now throw it open - where
next for the band?


*This was a Mercury Theatre Production*

* ---------------------------------------------------
* ---------------------------------------------------
No Thugs In Our House, only XTC.


From: myke <>
Message-Id: <>
Subject: Threading Askew with the Bludgeoning Ubu
Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 06:49:23 -0500 (CDT)

From: "Christopher R. Coolidge" <>
Subject: female producers

: early material.(Big Science, United States I-IV, etc.)This male-dominated
: industry being what it is, I don't think she's done much lately

	She has co-produced all of David Van Tieghem's solo
	albums, if I'm not mistaken.  Incidentally, Laurie's
	keyboardist for the MISTER HEARTBREAK tour, Joy Askew,
	finally issued another solo album.

From: Joshua Hall-Bachner <>
Subject: Re: bludgeon...not!

: You mean the R-to-L thing? I like that! And I don't hear a cowbell. (I do
: hear one of those Mexican "fish" that you scrape, but I don't see the
: problem there either.)

	I'm not talking about the panning gated guitar, I'm talking
	about Andy's guitar that goes "boing, boing, boing" behind
	the choruses. I love the gate, personally. It just reminds
	me of "U Mass" by the Pixies (cowbell cowbell cowbell), one
	of the most dreadfully misguided songs of that band's career.
	Not to mention the fact that I'm from Illinois and I want
	to beat up a whole trailer park when I hear it.

From: "Daniel Prendiville" <>
Subject: Hey, man, watch the threads...

:  The production on that track is a paragon of subtlety when compared
:  to the production/arrangement/performance of TRAIN RUNNING LOW, a
:  track which everybody seems to love, for some reason.

	I actually like SOUL COAL, but not because of the production.
	I do like the guitar work, reminds me of my favorite Reich
	and Glass albums. :)

>       Some of the song segues don't work. (Why are people always
>       compelled to make songs fade into each other on XTC albums?
>       It isn't necessary, folks!!)

:  Like, f'r instance?

	I don't like any of them, personally. I'd just like to hear
	a record with distinct songs for once.

: And as for "listening to production", you should try listening to
: SKYLARKING *without* the production. It's all over the album like a dog in
: heat...

	True. But I agree wholeheartedly with all production choices
	on SKYLARKING except those stupid coffeehouse bongos on "The Man
	Who Sailed Around Todd's Ego".

From: (Mike Martis)
Subject: The Unthinkable

: Now, I KNOW that most of us on this list consider our lads to be
: popular music's most important trio since Frank, Dean and Sammy. But
: let's play Mr. Record Company Executive for a moment.

	Okay, let's apply this to another favorite band of mine,
	and one more defiantly bizarre and hard to deal with
	than XTC by miles off.

	Pere Ubu.

	They don't have a signature tune that anyone's heard of,
	except for maybe "Waiting for Mary";

	They've sold a ton fewer records than XTC;

	Their sound is like a radio being hit with a hammer;

	They're giving up touring;

	They threaten to break up every five years;

	Their lead singer sounds like a seal being drowned in a
	bucket of caramel;

	They've come out of more ugly relationships than Elizabeth

	and, umm, well... they're getting on in years a bit.
	More so than XTC.

	And Pere Ubu don't have much problem finding a label.
	Keeping it, yes, but the options are there. Then again,
	Ubu aren't the band to go sniffing around major-label


Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 07:21 -0600 (MDT)
From: Miles or Gigi Coleman <>
Subject: Some punny stuff!
Message-id: <0DVCYGB0F0007G@ACS2.BYU.EDU>

>Who wrote the music, Andy Partridge or Gus Dudgeon? And if it does
>	sound like TFF, isn't it time someone gave Andy a curt reproach?

"Curt" reproach.  That's good!  It's got me "roland" around laughing! ;)


Miles and Gigi Coleman		Provo, Utah	Family Home Page		Index for Alumni of LDS Missions


Message-Id: <>
From: "Peter Fitzpatrick" <>
Subject: Re: Cast (was re: producer babble)
Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 14:01:55 +0100

> From: (Andrew Bissaro)
> Now a question: what do y'all think of Cast?  I haven't heard anything but
> the single, but any band with former La's in it has to be interesting...

yeah, just got the album.....soon as you mentioned "Cast" I couldn't get
the tune "Walk Away" out of my head.
In fact.......soon as I get home I'm gonna listen to it again........the
description that springs to mind is "mellowmerseyhardedgecleverrock"



Message-ID: <>
Date: Tue, 30 Jul 96 09:55:00 -0500
From: dgershmn <>
Organization: AMS
Subject: Ha ha for head-hocking rorse

In Chalkhills #141, arrived on the scene:

>Howdy, folks!  First time contributor, here...
>...I would suggest Ted Templeman as producer and Alex Van Halen as drummer., I wish you had started contributing're a VERY
funny individual. :)

And Mike Martis worried:

>I don't mean to be the guy throwing a wet towel on all the speculation
>regarding the new album (especially so soon after breaking free from
>Virgin's death grip), but I've got to bring it up: What if Mssrs.
>Partridge, Moulding and Gregory can't get a record deal?

> a business prospect, what record company is going to invest in an
entity with >that type of portfolio? In these bottom-line times, is there
anybody out there
>willing to take on a truly great artist despite the fact that it's got
>a decent chance of being a commercial bust?

Well, I share your concerns to a degree, but I feel pretty confident that
there are at least a handful of record companies out there interested in
quality music and not AS concerned about the commercial viability of the
music. Rykodisc, for one, who I read at one point was interested in taking
on XTC's catalog much the way they had with Frank Zappa (talk about
uncommercial!) and David Bowie. If handled and marketed properly, a CD
doesn't necessarily have to sell huge numbers to be successful for a record
company. I would try not to lose too much sleep about it yet, anyway.

Sweet dreams,

Dave Gershman


Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 15:55:31 +0100
Message-Id: <>
From: (Simon Sleightholm)
Subject: I'm not the sole fool...

From: "Daniel Prendiville" <>

>I know we've discussed this problem frequently over a late night cocoa and
>a digestive biccie, and while I'm in agreement with you generally, the
>thought has struck me that if it weren't for idle (some of it very idle)
>musings about producers, album titles, the *proper* running order of
>albums, songs referring to monkeys (nobody copped MONKEY CHOP by DAN I,
>circa 1979) etc. etc., we'd have bugger all to talk about really.

Well there's a thing. First you send me private e-mail decrying the whole
producer / drummer / next album title thing with spite, venom and invective,
and then you distance yourself from it and put me on the spot. Cheers.
Perhaps I should paste a few quotes from that mail in here, what do you
think? :-)

I quite enjoyed the initial conjecture about producers and drummers, etc.
But when people seemed to be getting so darned creepily *serious* about it,
it started to get very dull. So I ignored it. I didn't get angry about it
(not like some, eh, Dan?) I just didn't read it, and then, just to see if
anyone else was reading it I put one line in a post suggesting the man
Albini - a pretty obvious non-starter I would have thought. In reply I got a
serious, furrowed-brow response that I couldn't believe. Steve Albini is as
valid a suggestion as Mitchell Froom (although I recoil instinctively from
anyone connected in any way with Crowded House) because - get this - it
doesn't matter. It's not real, you see. It's all pretend. Our keyboards
aren't plugged into the heads of XTC. Talk about it by all means, I don't
care - I skip those bits, just as I skip anything that tries to interest me
in a band who sound "just like XTC" - just remember that it's not real. To
anyone who is still having nightmares that Albini is going to hi-jack the
next CD, I apologise. There, there. Simon's sorry, it was all a game.

I wasn't taking really any swings at anyone, I was just stunned that someone
actually thought I suggested Albini seriously and took the time present an
argument. It is, though, often the outsiders that make the most impact. Who
- looking back - would have countenanced an ex-Glitter Band drummer, a
producer whose credential was a Boy George single, and a guitar player as a
replacment for Barry Andrews?

BTW, I agree with you about the production on "Nonsuch" I think Dudgeon did
a fine job - and I love the *swampy* feel of "Crocodile", "Scarecrow People"
and "Shake You Donkey Up". If any producer deserves a month on Craggy Island
it's Rundgren for the entirely predictable run of four bells after "Are you
deafened by the bells?" on the decidely average "Big Day". A serious
slapping offence, that one.

Daniel, I'd like you to meet my *NEW* friend, Roger... :-)

>Simon Sleightholm sez:
>"... There may be a few deluded souls who've made
>"suggestions" with the hope that - in true B-movie style - Andy will be
>browsing Chalkhills, see a name and snap his fingers - "That's it!"...
>Amen, my brother, amen.  There has to be more
>information/news/gossip/tales regarding the band out there somewhere,
>instead of resorting to "what ifs" and the like.  Next, we'll all be reading
>threads regarding the possibilities of sounds if George Martin had produced
>Go2 and if Andy had been replaced by Tiny Tim.  Let's move on.  Thanks,

What a *nice* man. Have a biscuit, Roger.

* ---------------------------------------------------
* ---------------------------------------------------
No Thugs In Our House, only XTC.


Message-Id: <v02110104ae23d29e6efb@[]>
Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 16:14:33 +0100
From: (Stephen Varga)
Subject: XTC Video

There now follows a list of all the XTC videos I am aware of in near
chronological order. If I've missed any out, then please add to the list
(XTC live performances do not count)

The reason being that should a video see the light of day, we need to make
sure that every XTC vid is included.


I'm hoping there are one or two more to add to this particularly from the
Big Express and Oranges and Lemons albums, but I have never seen any other
videos apart from those I have already listed. (I'm not sure whether the
band has to reach a certain chart position before it can make a video!)

If you decide to make additions by editing my posting, then perhaps you
could make the insertion in the correct chronological spot. Thank you.


Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 08:42:41 -0700
Message-Id: <>
Subject: Against my better judgement...

  I am extending the submission deadline for Chalkhills' Children by two weeks
  to August 16.


  This will throw the shipping date out considerably as I will be doing some
  travelling and had hoped to get it duplicated and distributed before I left.
  This will not happen now.

  I expect to start taking orders for the tape in early September.  I will
  post the info to Chalkhills.  Hopefully the requestors will be more
  faithful in there purchase commitment than the contributors who baled out
  without a word.  If I find you booking but not buying, I'll slaughter
  your cattle and burn your crops.

  Additionally, I have not heard from the recording studio owner that
  offered to do all the dubbing at cost.  This will increase the cost as
  I'll have to go with a commercial service.

  If you are hesitating to send your tape because you feel it is inferior,
  send it.  None of us are professionals and you are amongst friends.

  I have now received 9 tapes and two more are due this week.

  Do it.



Message-Id: <>
Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 10:00:40 -0600
From: DeWitt Henderson <>
Subject: misc

Hello all!  I've been gone for a week and a half (who cares, right?), and
just caught up on 4 issues of Chalkillidom (thanks to whoever created the
exciting list of all of our Chalkhills reader nicknames).
- Ted Templeman & Alex Van Halen???  Nahhhhh, Keltner, or one of the many
  other good suggestions.  Besides, like whoever commented on Andy looking
  at our producer suggestions and saying "that's it!" - I think our drummer
  ideas fall into the same category
- Paul from Australia - YEAH!  That's the kind of stuff we want to read
  about, not the endless threads stuff...
- Monkey joke - I think part of the deal there, and I'm not trying to stir
  up any animosity here, is that our group probably mostly ranges from 15-
  40+, with (my guess) most falling between 18-40.  So what?  Well, with
  those age differences goes some differences in sense of humor, maybe...
  so even though I didn't think the monkey joke was funny, and wasn't an
  appropriate response to the plea for getting along, I blew it off because
  I probably would've thought it was funny a few years back.  Make sense?
- Mike ("concerned"...) - hey, man, I see what you're talking about, but
  let's just assume (hope?) that some record company is willing to take a
  shot.  I mean, even though their sales haven't ever been huge (did anyone
  ever get any statistics on that?), I bet their worldwide sales are a
  little better than we think.
- Sorry, this doesn't have anything to do with XTC, but I have to throw in
  a tiny plug here - THE GUITAR GOD, Eric Johnson, of Austin, TX, has a
  new CD coming out supposedly on 9/3.  For those unfamiliar with him, I'd
  highly suggest checking out "Tones" and "Ah Via Musicom".  Before moving
  to New Mexico, I saw Eric live several times, and the man is right up
  there with Hendrix, Stevie Ray, Clapton, you name 'em!!!  (OK, I'll be
  quiet now).
* ------------------------------
DeWitt Henderson
Los Alamos National Laboratory
MS P223
* ------------------------------


Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 09:03:33 -0700
Message-Id: <>
Subject: Translator CD

  Some time ago there was some talk about the S.F. band "Translator."

  Their material was tough to locate and only available on LP.  There is
  now a compilation of the best of the two LPs available on CD, entitled
  "Everywhere That We Were: The Best of Translator"   has five sound
  bites to play.

       Everywhere That We Were: The Best Of Translator
       CK 64778, on Columbia/Legacy

       Like many bands found in the San Francisco music scene of
       the mid '80s, Translator was a band a decade ahead of its
       time. Their jangly guitar pop and resolutely modernist song
       writing was the  beginning of the trend which would later
       become the alternative music of the '90s. Found here are
       their hits "Everywhere That I'm Not" and "Cry For A Shadow."

  Check it out. Or not.

  Cheers Richard


From: Aaron Pastula <>
Message-Id: <>
Subject: Signing...
Date: Tue, 30 Jul 96 9:37:09 PDT

> I don't mean to be the guy throwing a wet towel on all the speculation
> regarding the new album (especially so soon after breaking free from
> Virgin's death grip), but I've got to bring it up: What if Mssrs.
> Partridge, Moulding and Gregory can't get a record deal?
> Please, somebody tell me I'm hallucinating...

You're hallucinating, Mike!

All your reasons for them not being able to sign to a BIG SCARY
I think there are probably hundreds of not-so-big labels that would love to
give XTC a better deal and a little more support than they're used to.  It
has been mentioned here before, I think, that Rykodisc would be the ideal
choice for them, and with this I agree.  If you look at their catalog, it
contains many many artists that may not have moved a lot of product as well
as some who have such as Frank Zappa, David Bowie, and Elvis Costello.

Ryko acquired Zappa's ENTIRE catalog - almost 70 albums - and remastered
them all and rereleased them.  If memory serves me correctly, the deal went
down for about $40, obviously Ryko has the financial
resources as well as the desire to give worthy - and perhaps somewhat
obscure - artists their place in the sun.  Ryko probably has the ability to
not only to release XTC's next album, but to acquire their entire back
catalog as well (maybe 15 albums, next to Zappa's 70) and insure that they
don't disappear, or, better yet, some of you could get that
newly-remastered ES you've been yearning for.

Basically, a label like Ryko has the financial ability to sign XTC,
renew their career, save their back catalog, and promote them to the
right  Justice.



Message-Id: <>
From: Michael Wilson <>
Subject: Jellyfilled Swindonians
Date: Tue, 30 Jul 96 12:58:32 -0500

You've got my Vote. From Beatnik Beatch to Jellyfish, Andy Sturmer can bang
those skins with the best of them.  His ear for harmony is next to flawless.
Besides he's unemployed and anyone who knows Jellyfish knows that Sturmer is
an avid XTC fan.
*                                                        *
*     " I'm a pilot fish on the shark of life "          *
*                           - Michael Wilson             *
*                             some 20th century guy      *
*                                                        *


Message-Id: <>
Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 14:12 -0400 (EDT)
From: "Sawyer, Keith" <Keith.Sawyer@FMR.Com>
Subject: Sugarplastic

I just recently resubscribed, so I don't know if this has been discussed to
death in here already, but a San Francisco band called Sugarplastic is
putting out some fantastic XTC-inspired pop.  I haven't heard their debut
album yet ('Radio Jejune' on Sugarfix records) but their major label debut
('Bang, the Earth is Round' on DGC) is an absolutely incredible effort.
 They have a crispy-pop feel with some great female backing and a nice
subtext of marriage and children running through the album.  They are much
more concerned about structure than say, Blur - but are less flowery than
Jellyfish.  Just amazing stuff, it hasn't left my CD player since I
purchased it.


Message-Id: <>
Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 12:36:25 -0700
From: Lee Moskow <>
Subject: Lyrics

Can someone please point me in the right direction for finding the lyrics to
Explode Together.  I especially want to know what is being said in
"Commerciality."  The only word I can understand is commerciality.  Either
my hearing is bad, or the words are slurred.  Who knows.



Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 17:44:13 -0400
Message-ID: <>
Subject: Skylacking


Ian just informed me that a few tracks haven't yet been sent
for the Skylacking tribute tape (deja vu, huh Richard? :-)  ).
You guys know who you are... don't wanna mention any names...

Send them!  Or get in contact with Ian (Stewart):
Po Box 15579
Columbus, OH  43215

Or you can fax him at work:  (614) 621-9109.

Your lacking relay man from the sky,


Message-Id: <>
From: "Mark Strijbos" <>
Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 23:30:42 +0000
Subject: Settlement once and for all

Dear Chalksters,

I have to object strongly to this comment from the last Digest
regarding the original Virgin ES CD release:

> and was abridged by a few tracks to meet what was then a lower CD program
> capacity.  No one minded in Europe, since vinyl versions also were
> cropped in various ways to adapt the album into a single disk format.
> "Yacht Dance", "Knuckle Down", & "Fly on the Wall" were common omissions.

1. BS and Mummer were released at the same time and bonus tracks
were added to those.
IMHO the French used the original French single album as their "master"...
More a mistake than a concious decision.

2. What do you mean with "No one minded in Europe"???
I 4 1 did mind terrible but what could I do? I could only fork out
for the expensive imported US Geffen release when it became available.
I bought my first CD player just to be able to play ES from CD...
Boy, did I mind!!!

Re: Hans de Vente:
Someone asked: "Who is/was Hans de Vent" ?
Hans de Vente (that's the correct spelling btw) is/was a Dutch
fan/friend of the band and Andy.
Those of you who have a tape of the (excellent) 1982 Paradiso
Amsterdam can hear Andy introduce him as he joins them on stage for a
rendition of "Life Begins At The Hop".
I think he does the la-la-la-la-la bits :)

I've come across an article recently that says he did the same with
the Talking Heads in Amsterdam and London, so he must have known them
pretty good as well :)

I've actually met this very friendly guy in 1980.
He was working for a record company then - might have been Virgin or Wea
Benelux but I'm not sure - which might explain how he got to to know XTC in
the first place.

BTW: his name "de Vente" would mean something like "(belonging to) the wind"
in French. Now go and check your Mummer LP innersleeve again :)



===> Mark's useless XTC quote for today <==
Break the code of the whispering chimneys and traffic signs


Date: Wed, 31 Jul 1996 08:35:42 +0800 (SST)
Message-Id: <>
From: Kevin M Mathews <>

 Ah, certainly, more of the same from our quirky yet faithful Chalkhillians,
even opinions that need addressing -

Andrew Bissaro sed :

 " Now, the more I read all this producer babble, the stronger the feeling
>becomes that it has to be Froom.  He's paid his dues, recorded a LOT of
>pop, and matured pretty well.  His wife (S. Vega) is a HUGE XTC fan and
>would undoubtedly have some interesting contributions to taking the
>proceedings on some level...and then they could get Richard Thompson to
>play some guitar, and Jim Keltner to play drums (he would do a NICE job
>with xTc), maybe Elvis would show up for some BVs...I guarantee if this
>happened, the good vibes would spread and produce a real Work of Fine
>Musical Art.   Yes, this is what it must be; I'm glad we're all in

Sounds like a interesting idea ... but I still feel that the best option is
self-production by Partridge and the gang. Maybe get Hugh Padgham on the

" Greetings from Sweden - where an XTC-album sells lousy 2000 copies" was
the message from Per Aronsson. Hey, man, I'm afraid that 2,000 copies would
be a fantastic amount in Singapore where 7,500 copies is a GOLD RECORD.
*ahem* my own first album "Democracy" sold 2,000 copies and that despite
having a hit single on top of the radio charts and on heavy rotation ( 8
times a day). Mention XTC to Singaporeans and they'll think you a drug pedd

: Joshua Hall-Bachner felt that :
> "Okay. Three albums of pretty blatant 60's psychedelia is okay. One song
>that sounds *vaguely* like Tears For Fears is bad. And besides, Gus didn't
>write the songs, did he?"

By the way, the first TFF reference can be found on "King for a Day"(O&L)
which came across like "Everybody wants to rule the world" which basically
utilises the same guitar figure and rhythm. TFF have some sixties references
esp on Seeds of Love and Brian Wilson Said but other than that they're ( or
he's) seriously so-so.

>Mike Martis is having a bad day so :
>"  What if Mssrs.
>Partridge, Moulding and Gregory can't get a record deal?"

Seriously, Mike, I don't really think that XTC would have any real problem
getting a record deal. I remember when I heard in 1995 that Robyn Hitchcock
was without  record deal ( from *ahem* Peter Buck - well, actually from me
mate Ben Harrison who was interviewing REM when they were in town [ and
mentioned RH to Buck at my request] ) and lo & behold the man has a new
album out on Warners of all people ( who also have REM and Elvis on the list
). I'm sure the likes of Geffen would be interested to deal with XTC as
their last few US albums have done relatively well. What do other
Chalkhillians think?

Those of you who loved the Dukes should check out a "serious' version -
English band KULA SHAKER who have a album due at the end of the year
produced by John Leckie ( who else?) - they have a single out ( Tattva )
that is retro-cool-savvy and their leader is Crispin Mills, son of actress
Hayley Mills and grandson of John Mills. Heh!

Nuff Said. "Kingdom Come" is a half-baked attempt buy Mark Waid to do a Alan
Moore -  that whole Cap Marvel sequence is a blatant rip-off of Kid
Marvelman. Huh? Those in the know - you know so let me know.
                Cheers, Kevin.
" And all the world is football shaped ... " all you yanks should know that
Andy ain't talkin' pigskin!!


Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 21:36:50 -0400
Message-ID: <>
Subject: WOW!

I've been an Xstatic fan since 1992 or so, but with a severely limited budget
my CD purchases are sporadic at best.  Thus my XTC collection (a top priority
for me in that consumer realm to be sure) is incomplete.  But it's a blessing
in disguise - whilst many of you anxiously await the next XTC release (as do
I) - I look forward to the day that I see Skylarking in a CD or LP bin AND
have money to buy it!  It's a blessing of course because to me it's NEW
music!!!  Well - last Saturday I bought Big Express and Black Sea for $21.  I
LOVE THIS FUCKING MUSIC!!!  It is so inspiring. Plus I'm two CDs closer to
completing my basic collection.  I think all I need now is Skylarking and
their first two.
Success methinks - I'm in a classic-rock cover band (not the ultimate outlet
for all my expressive needs but a lark nonetheless) and I have lent O&L, D&W,
and Nonsuch to various members thereof for as long as they wanted them.
 Response has been pretty good. I'm working on developing my singing voice
so's I can introduce - oh let's say - Rocket From A Bottle into our
repertoire - they want to start 'going modern' and the best they've come up
with is "... everybody wang chung tonight..." - blecch)  I lost my
transcription of the Rocket guitar solo so I'll have to redo that but I know
it'll be worth it.
Just wanted to share that with you!


End of Chalkhills Digest #2-142

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