Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #3-154

         Chalkhills Digest, Volume 3, Number 154

                 Thursday, 14 August 1997

Today's Topics:

                    Thoughts on #3-152
        It's in the order of the hedge rows.......
                Can, digital vs. analogue.
                     Re: Rockpallast
                 It's all too much......
                  my Partridge performs
                  The Delights Of Filing
               Re: letter to the anti-self
                Can't stop the Todd thread
                     Under the Covers
  In Loving Memory... of a Kinks Koncept Album (+Todd R)
      John, Paul, Graham, and Nick (oddly, no Andy)
               Upsy Daisy, X-fading and BAM
                  Are You Receiving Me?
                Music to Chalk by - or not
                      Black Sea Food
              Non-XtC Content (for a change)
                      Re: MOMMYHEADS


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The views expressed herein are those of the individual authors.

Chalkhills is digested with Digest 3.4 (John Relph <>).

Decorate the inside of your heads.


Message-Id: <>
Date: Wed, 13 Aug 1997 21:34:23 -0700
From: Jason Kirkman__Carol Kawase <>
Subject: Thoughts on #3-152

Hello, everyone,

I hardly ever post, but a few items in the last digest got a rise out of me.

Matt N. wonders about an Atlantic Records connection for the American Black
Sea LP.  My introduction to XTC was Drums and Wires (which I bought when it
first came out on the strength of a favorable review in Rolling Stone
magazine).  I was so knocked out by it I bought Black Sea the moment I knew
it was out, so I imagine my copy is an early issue.  Just as Matt
describes, there is a green sticker on the back of the green paper bag
which has the Virgin and RSO "barnyard animal" (pig? cow?) logos on it.
When you hold the bag up to a bright light source, it's obvious the sticker
is meant to cover up the original printing on the bag, which says the same
thing that's printed on the bottom left corner of the back cover of the
original US Drums and Wires LP, i.e. "Virgin Records, Inc.  Distributed by
Atlantic Recording Corporation  A Warner Communications Company".

Certainly sounds like Atlantic was originally supposed to distribute the
record.  Chris Twomey's book says they were signed to RSO at the time of
the Ameican Black Sea tour, which began in October 1980.  The US LP came
out in November.  I'm betting there aren't any copies of the US Black Sea
LP with Atlantic labels and no green sticker on the bag.  Any collectors
out there who know better?

I don't know anything about Atlantic catalog or matrix numbers, but my copy
of Black Sea has VR-1-1000-REI etched into the trail-out wax.  The labels
are silver with a red RSO animal.

On other topics...

Jim S.--I actually like the song "Mother", and know at least one other
person who does.  7/4 time, hip guitar solo, and I really think the vocal
delivery is hilarious.  I guess the relationship you have with your own
mother might affect your response to the song.

John Relph--Canned Heat?  If so, what are my five bonus points good for?

The latest Little Express--the anonymous reviewer of BBC Radio One Live
asserts that Americans "will give British bands a great deal of attention
only if the band is recycling something American... ."  I don't agree with
this, and wonder what others think about it.  I was around when the Beatles
first came to America.  I loved 'em right off the bat, and it was a few
years before I bought any albums and heard them do any Little Richard or
Chuck Berry.

Sorry to prattle on so.  Can't wait for that new album.

Jason K.


Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 14 Aug 1997 00:56:32 -0600
From: "Jeffrey Langr" <Jeffrey.Langr@MCI.Com>
Subject: offtopic

>Sgt. Pepper remains one of the most important, influential and

Well I knew that my crack would get a rise out of Mr. Monday, just
checking to see if he was awake.

Sgt Pepper: Important yes ... dated yes ... timeless, some but not all
of it... a bit pretentious, even, some of it... Revolver and Rubber Soul
beat Sgt Pepper hands down.

>Listen, we all like to sing the praises of unsung heroes.  It is great
>fun to look down upon very popular acts and say, "You think they're
>good?  You should hear XTC and The Kinks!".

Part of it, perhaps, is not having to have every single Beatles track
shoved down your throat while growing up, incessant, endless repetition
of just about everything they did.  I still have most of the Beatles CDs
but it's a much rarer occasion to pull them out, there's just not much
point.  It's not "great fun to look down upon very popular acts" (what a
snide remark, anyway), it's just my opinion, and you are wrong to
suggest it's because I dislike the Beatles.

XTC, here's a question, what album of theirs will be considered "best"
or "most important" long after they're gone?  A chance for an on-topic
discussion for a change.  Maybe it's a yet-to-be-released album...



Message-Id: <>
Date: Thu, 14 Aug 1997 01:25:34 -0700
Subject: It's in the order of the hedge rows.......

Hey Chalkheads!
Thought I would follow up on my recent entry
to this ongoing conversation....between new XTC releases!
A couple of folks grabbed the wrong end of the Beatles stick and
beat around my bushes with it! Ah well,life on the net.
I DID know that there were two mixes of Sgt. Pepper.
Stereo and Mono.
I received the mono version for christmas 1967.
I was seven.I listened to that record(vinyl for all you kids)
until I wore it out.
I bought the cd stereo version Mr. Monday,the day it came out.
I listened with headphones,many times.
I would enjoy this music on an Edison phonograph.
Stereo doesn't suck.It's really apples,oranges and lemons.
There are a few things missing in the stereo version,for instance Paul's
screaming at the end of Sgt. Pepper (Reprise) seems to buried or gone.
Little things mean alot.I agree with John Lennon in this instance.
I like mono.
You say tomato and Dan Quayle says tomatoe.Pass the Pepper.
Johan Ekdahl wanted to know about mono Beatles records.
Stereo was still new in the sixties Mr. Ekdahl.
I believe all Beatles records with the exception of Abbey Road have mono
Beatles records in "mono" are coveted artifacts now.
Here is an interesting IDEA from the mind of Tony Curtis in a recent
Showtime movie, Nixon meets Elvis.A highly amusing and for what it's
worth,true story.
Tony Curtis says Elvis was a big fan of his.
Elvis once said (apparently) that Tony was his major influence.
The Beatles had said Elvis was their major motivation.
So Tony Curtis deduces if it weren't for Tony Curtis there would be no
Elvis, no XTC?(I added the XTC bit....)
We have no XTC now.
Maybe Tony needs to be more visible these days.
..all part of decencies jigsaw I suppose.
John Murphy


Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 14 Aug 1997 09:18:43 +0100
From: Graham Shore <>
Organization: GMAP Ltd.
Subject: Can, digital vs. analogue.

Dear Chalkers,
Does anyone else out there like Can - I know AndyP does, and he says
Malcolm Mooney is his favourate singer (Black Sea tour programme I
Regarding LP vs. CD, I could not agree more with the recent views
expressed that 'something is lost' in the transfer to digital. Holger
Czukay (bass player with Can) once commented that quantisation takes the
soul out of music; another view I read recently was that the faults with
CD are 'black' - i.e. its what you don't hear that is the problem,
rather than the odd bit of surface noise from LP's. Anyone noticed that
even digitally remastered LP's can sound cold and sterile compared to
their analogue originals?
Best Regards,
Graham S.
I would have liked to have made this instrumental but the words got in
the way...


Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 14 Aug 1997 11:30:58 +0200
Subject: Re: Rockpallast


In my announcement last Chalkhills (#3-153) I forgot to mention that the
Rockpallast show on Septemer 28 (that's in the night from saterday to
sunday) will be on the WDR.
The WDR is available on Astra 1C 11,053 GHz, Transponder 39 (so they say on
their homepage:), so that covers most of europe.



Message-Id: <l03020900b015c954835d@[]>
Date: Thu, 14 Aug 1997 05:49:14 -0400
From: that milkmaid <>
Subject: anklung/honking/mommyheads


RE: the anklung (which, no one has pointed out, has a beautifully
onomatopeic name) - is it just used on "yacht dance" or did they also use
it on "it's nearly africa"? i'm asking because my [insert profanity of
choice] CD of _english settlement_ is the cheap Geffen one without any
liner notes at all and my cassette is somewhere on the trunk of my car.
also stuffed in some pouch of my car is a tape i dubbed off my mother of
some really cool Balinese drumming, most of which also features the
anklung. it doesn't sound anything like the way it sounds on "yacht dance",
though, because in Bali they play it like a giant wooden xylophone, i.e.
melodically, whereas XTC use it like a tambourine or cymbal or something,
i.e. rhythmically. (although of course it sounds a hundred times better
than something as cheesy as a tambourine or a cymbal.)

am i completely crazy, or does anyone else think that the horns in "it's
nearly africa" sound like Canada geese?! i do and for some reason [see
aforementioned possible insanity] i love it.

to whoever hated the Mommyheads but loved the Posies, BFF, Newell etc.:

first of all, which album did you get? secondly, how many times did you
listen to it? the Mommyheads just might end up in Chalkhills as a band you
either love or hate, the way that plenty of people think that Jellyfish
suck, BFF is puerile and geeky, or Matthew Sweet's a poser - not to mention
a small but discriminating minority that aren't all that fond of Yazbek or
the solo Newell. i happen to violently disagree with the first three
opinions and count myself among the latter. (i have no real opinion on Todd
Runtgrunt [aside from liking what he did for Skylarking as a producer but
NOT as engineer] because i have yet to purchase any of his albums.) anyway,
the point i'm trying to make here is that there are a couple of things to
know about the Mommyheads (anti-Mom faction please page down here):

	1) a lot of their best stuff isn't on the records - they remind me
a little of what XTC would have been like if they had been on an indie
label and so basically produced themselves, just in that they're not very
good editors of their own material. the live tapes i've heard have mostly
been amazing - hysterical and musically brilliant by turns - they do a
space-rock almost Grateful Dead-like version of "I Can't Go For That" that
is so insane it's great. i have yet to see them live but if this is
anything to go by i'd say they're a damn sight better than XTC in concert
because they're not afraid to play with the songs and improvise.

	2) they have also gone through really enormously different phases -
their first album _Acorn_, which is probably nearly impossible to find
(released 1989 on Fang Records in NY) and which i think only exists on
vinyl [right Mitch? feel free to leap in at any point :)], is extremely
cute, eccentric, lo-fi (but in more of a crunchy way than the likes of
Sebadoh or Beck), and jazzy in a pop kind of way. their second album
_Coming into Beauty_ (1992, newly reprinted by Simple Machines Records, who
are on the web at has about
half an album's worth of genius (all the songs by Adam Cohen, mostly)
interspersed with a third of an album's worth of dreck. but the good songs
are at least 800 times better than anything Martin Newell ever wrote -
"Like a Brick" is possibly the best song that...
next up, _Flying Suit_ (on Dromedary Records, 1994, c.f. is short and sweet - twisted
pop songs, a lot more electric than their previous record, the production
quality is a lot better, and they got a totally different bass player -
more funky and rock rather than jazz/folk fusion. one friend of mine said
that "Henry Miller is Dead" sounded like Jane's Addiction, which i never
really saw, but FYI. there're also some great countryish slow songs
("Bottom Out", "Annabelle Ann") and my absolute favorite of the on-album
Mommyheads tracks, "Worm", which is pure pop sugar cut with a little XTC.
(yes, all drug references made here are intentional.) not a bad song on
this one - for that reason i'd suggest it as a first Mommyheads purchase.
fourthly, their 1995? album _Bingham's Hole_ (Dot Dot Dash Records, not
available anywhere on the net as far as i know [if anyone comes across it
at cdnow or someplace i'd be interested to hear about it], but that snob
boutique Other Music has been known to carry it on occasion) is a complete
left turn into driving and jamming rather crunchy rock a la (although a
hundred times better than) Blues Traveler or even (gasp) Phish. this is the
album that took me a long time to get used to because i was so appalled by
the mere idea of the Mommyheads going Grateful Dead on me that i could
barely listen to it, but once i got over that i realized that the songs are
still great - "Only Star" has a swelling Matthew Sweet-like chorus, and if
"Needmore, Pennsylvania" doesn't reduce people to tears if one is feeling a
little bit maudlin (note that i am not saying drunk or temporarily
hormonally impaired - i'll leave that to your discretion), i'll eat
something unpleasant. also featuring "Queen of the Ant Race", which is
another classic. anyway, this all brings us to the most recent (and first
big-label) cd, which is eponymous (i.e. self-titled, c.f. R.E.M.'s
hits/b-sides album) and released just last month on our second favorite
label, Geffen (http:/, is unfortunately produced
by Don Was. now as someone who thinks that _Oranges & Lemons_ (and _John
Henry_, for what it's worth) is two albums worth of brilliant songwriting
very nearly ruined by the horrifyingly slick and L.A.-influenced,
soul-killing production of Paul Fox, and who isn't that fond of Gus Dudgeon
either, i think that Don Was is about as bad as they get - the only worse
person the Mommyheads could have been stuck with as producer would have to
be Jeff Lynne. but Was still manages to make them sound like the Traveling
Wilburys when they were so obviously going for the Beatles, which is a
shame. that said, the songs are not bad - "Screwed" is a fabulously bitter
album-closer in the vein of Steely Dan, and "You Keep on Looking Back" is
the Posies done one better - but it has definitely grown on me, as the
first time i heard it i confess to being slightly disappointed. it actually
does remind me a little bit of _Nonsuch_ in a way - again in the production
values it has some of the same classic-rock styling, like in "Books Are

	3) Adam Cohen, the leader and main songwriter of the Mommyheads, is
a professed XTC fan, and unlike several groups whose main accomplishment is
to sound something like XTC (Jellyfish, Martin Newell, Yazbek, the
Sugarplastic, etc), they actually sound almost nothing like them, but have
a distinctly original appeal that is like XTC in depth of songwriting and
unusual time signatures only. so if you're looking for more of the same,
you might not like them, but if your interest in XTC is in the quirkiness
(not to use any rock-critic *cliches* or anything :)) as well as the craft,
then the Mommyheads are right up your alley. (there's also a really good
web page devoted just to them at,
although i'm not going to comment on the "better than Traffic" quote!)

	<lecture mode off>

	yrs truly, i remain,

	the third biggest mommyhead on Chalkhills,

		- brookes
R. Brookes McKenzie                             aka Louise B. Minetti
"When one practices witchcraft, one does so alone. One interviews the devil
alone... Creation issues in separateness." - Anais Nin, _Fire_
(as in 'what's that milkmaid/ doing there?' - i.e., don't ask.)


Message-Id: <>
From: "Chris Ellerd" <>
Subject: It's all too much......
Date: Thu, 14 Aug 1997 06:16:09 -0400

Dear Chalkhills
No, I'm not going to take the bridge or anything. But Todd Rundgren, Ozark
Mountain Daredevils,Danny elfman? It's all too much.....
Anyways, I always wanted to know the scuttlebut behind the "Skylarking"
sessions (between XTC and Todd, who did what musically). I don't know, but
the string arrangement in "Dear God" reeks of Todd. God. Todd. Scary. Could
one of you columnites give me some insight? Columnite. Insight. Scary.
Thanks and I'm enjoying.


Message-Id: <l03020901b018852d6f68@[]>
Date: Thu, 14 Aug 1997 06:24:28 -0400
From: that milkmaid <>
Subject: my Partridge performs

	briefly (ha!) - does anyone else think that "My Bird Performs" is a
(possibly unintentional) dig at AP on Colin's part?  as if to say, "you
might think you're all that, but i'm just as good as you are in a different
way" - Andy's all about fine art in songwriting, it seems to me, and
"highbrow prose" (the whole rest of _Nonsuch_ to me is a perfect example of
AP writing at his highbrow best, with the possible exception of "Books are
Burning"), while Colin has never risen to that level of intricate wordplay.
but he seems to be saying that he doesn't care, he's happy with the way his
songs are - "my world shakes for me", etc. the part that really clinches it
for me is "you keep saying what you got" - it just seems more pointed than
if the usual interpretation of the track, i.e. without a   secret hidden
message, as it were. and of course, this being XTC and not the Beatles,
this is Colin's _far_ milder version of "How Do You Sleep?", and it also
explains, to my mind, why XTC is still together, as many songwriters would
have quit out of injured pride alone. for further fuel for my theory, see
"Down a Peg" (available on the Japanese release _Demo Tracks_, as well as
on one of the singles from _Nonsuch_) - i have less to go on but it still
makes sense of an otherwise kind of bizarre song, as well as the brightly
sarcastic way it's sung.

	not that i'm saying that CM is definitely setting out to say these
things to Andy's face, but that perhaps he's doing a little bit of what
Andy said (in the Rifff interview - thank you Simon, you little-known and
underworshipped god!) he did about his wife's years-long deception of him -
he didn't know it consciously, but his subconscious was well aware of it
and he wrote many songs about the way she was treating him (he's cited
"Always Winter Never Christmas" and "The Ugly Underneath" in a couple of
different recent interviews, but i would add "Dear Madam Barnum",
"Snowman", "Crocodile", "Super, Supergirl", "Rip van Reuben", even as early
as "Are You Recieving Me?", and countless others that i can't even remember
off the top of my head, as being prime and perfect examples of this, to the
point where i couldn't believe that he hadn't known all along that she was
cheating on him).

	discuss amongst yourselves,

		- brookes
R. Brookes McKenzie                             aka Louise B. Minetti
"When one practices witchcraft, one does so alone. One interviews the devil
alone... Creation issues in separateness." - Anais Nin, _Fire_
(as in 'what's that milkmaid/ doing there?' - i.e., don't ask.)


Message-ID: <>
From: Gary Minns <>
Subject: The Delights Of Filing
Date: Thu, 14 Aug 1997 11:55:16 +0100

>>Those of us who file our CD collections alphabetically...
>But how does one file them if they are _all_ by XTC ? ;)

Well, personally Mark, I go for chronological order!  Sometimes, on a
boring wet Sunday afternoon, I might rearrange them into catalogue
number order, just for a change of pace!  The Arabic releases can cause
problems when doing this!

>Why would you WANT to remove the backmasking

Seeing as I started this thread I better clarify my point.  If the
back-masking is within the song then, obviously, it forms an integral
part of the music and must be left.

It was the little squiggle of blurb that came after Mole and before
Vanishing Girl on the Chips CD that confused me.  Why bother to leave in
a 2 second line of nonsuch that was not part of a song?  I suppose the
answer is: why bother to take it out?

Yours Knight Errantly
Don Garino de Londres


Message-Id: <>
Date: Thu, 14 Aug 1997 08:22:18
From: Keith Hanlon <>
Subject: Re: letter to the anti-self

>Musical preferences are subjective, of course, so your mileage may
>vary, but just know that there is a flipside to all the
>Mommyheads-praising that you've read here...

The backlash begins... did I call this, or what?

Off to listen to the Mommyheads for the billionth time,

	  Norton's Orchestraville Homepage


Date: Thu, 14 Aug 97 08:56:16 CST
Message-Id: <>

     MARK A. GOTTSCHALK wrote,

     "That's all. I don't have too much to say. Adios, and remember,
     write things that will interest me. Thank you."

     That is the request of the century.

     Who else but some 17 yr old kid would come on a mailing list with
     thousands of people and ideas and make that request. I Me Mine.

     What a cute kid. I could just ruffle his hair.


     On Cheryl's question about Colin and Mr. P ( That's Andy, there
     Markie) switching songs, that is quite an interesting question that
     might get us off the tired subject of Todd Rundlesnot and whether the
     Kinks had smoother trousers than the Beatles and the MC5.

     I can hear most of the songs on ES being switched and not suffering in
     the slightest except maybe "All of a Sudden". It's got Andy's sad
     emotional singing that just sends tears down my spine and chills in my
     eyes. I don't think (and I know you lot will correct me if I am wrong)
     I have ever heard Colin sing a song with that kind of raw emotion
     coming through. Ponder that for a few.

     Keep keepin' on ,


     P.S. Does anyone in Europe watch Sifl n Olly on MTV Europe?


Date: Thu, 14 Aug 1997 10:08:08 -0400
Message-Id: <>
From: "Michael D. Myers" <>
Subject: Can't stop the Todd thread

Hey there Chalkies;

I think it's a fine idea to fade out on the Todd R. thread, but it does
appear to have a scary life of its own.  Just yesterday, the esteemed Stormy
Monday wrote:

>He did a great job on Skylarking, but I really like "Another
>Satellite".  Andy has a lot of fun with puns, metaphors and double
>meanings in that one.

>Stormy Monday

>PS.  Someone asked about "You'll take an inch but you'd love a mile"?
>That was from The Ozark Mountain Daredevils song, "Jackie Blue".

I hate to bring this up, but my memory informs me that Todd was the producer
of THAT ALBUM TOO!!  Since it appears that he has produced approximately 75%
of the albums we all talk about when we go off-topic, this thread will never

Oh well.

And to answer Cheryl's thought about which of Andy's songs could I see Colin
singing, "The Disappointed" comes to mind.  I could just see him getting
into a somewhat somber cabaret kind of thing.  I am really working too hard
and starting to lose it....



Message-ID: <>
From: Catherine Sweeney <>
Subject: Under the Covers
Date: Thu, 14 Aug 1997 15:24:30 +0100


I thought further on this - how about Andy and Colin doing covers.

I think Andy would do marvels with Wolfgang Press - I can hear him
singing "Bottom Drawer" pretty menacingly, or "Kansas", even.

Colin would probably work wonders with the Lightning Seeds.  He could do
"Real, Real, Real" by Jesus Jones a treat.  Or something in Stone Roses
stylee - I certainly think his voice would really suit "Fool's Gold".

Or Andy singing Velvet Underground's "Perfect Day", or "I know what I
like in your Wardrobe" by Genesis (or is Peter Gabriel just too
'definitive'...).   Anything off "Selling England by the pound" is
probably worthy of Andy's attentions, although I'd give Colin "More fool

They should do their own tribute album just for laughs and record
anything they liked in homage to their favourite grooves.

I'd like Julian Cope to cover "All of a Sudden" in a similar style to
his own song "Me Singing".  In return, Andy could cover "Soldier  Blue",
which I think would be magnificent to behold.  All that righteous anger
in  his voice ... lovely!

I think you're right about "Melt the Guns", though.  I think "Living
through another Cuba" is also solely Andy's.  I think Colin would make a
pretty good job of "Mayor of Simpleton".

I think I've lost it....must be the heat...


Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 14 Aug 1997 10:34:25 +0100
From: Tim Harris <>
Subject: In Loving Memory... of a Kinks Koncept Album (+Todd R)

There is definitely an area of overlap in the sensibilities of AP and
Ray Davies as well as in the (mis)fortunes of both their recording
careers. Not sure about RDD as an XTC producer - but a collaboration
between the two is much more interesting to contemplate.

For those who know the work IMO 'In Loving Memory of A Name' would fit
seamlessly within The Kinks' (1968/69) 'Arthur - or The Decline & Fall
of the British Empire'.

And new albums from both parties are long overdue.

On the separate matter of Todd R:
Lots of recent refs to his high profile works like Something/Anything.
and A Wizard...... , but the one I listen to most is Deface The Music -
his own little Dukes of Strat-type foray, though obviously not up to the
beatlings about of the Rutles!
Tim Harris


Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 14 Aug 97 11:16:00 -0500
From: dgershmn <>
Organization: AMS
Subject: John, Paul, Graham, and Nick (oddly, no Andy)

Stormy asked:
>Anybody remember Graham Parker and The Rumour?  He always claimed
>that Joe and Elvis ripped him off.  Maybe they did, but I like EC
>and JJ much better.  The Rumour was a hot band!

You bet! "Squeezing Out Sparks" is one of the great albums of the late '70s,
up there with the work of JJ and EC from that period. Sadly, he's never
achieved the kind of recognition that the others have...partly explainable
by his inconsistency over the years.

What about Nick Lowe? I NEVER hear him mentioned here, but I'd put "Pure Pop
for Now People" and "Labour of Lust" alongside any of Elvis' albums (which I
love as well, don't get me wrong) anyday. I enjoy a lot of his other stuff
as well (Rockpile's "Seconds of Pleasure" high among them), but those two
are what I would consider his highwater marks. Heck, I might even choose to
listen to one of those two over an XTC album from time to time, depending on
my mood...maybe in the mid-late-early morning. But never at dusk...never at
dusk! (Those of you who don't get that last part will think I'm nuts...)

Ralph, opining on the Beatles/Kinks "working class" thing, said:
>The Beatles, on the other hand, were never comfortable confining themselves
>to small-town sensiblities and anxieties.

I see your basic point regarding Ray Davies, but the above statement is not
quite true. John may have set his sights on a wider horizon more frequently,
but there are songs like "Good Morning, Good Morning"...definitely
small-town stuff. And Paul wrote many "common man" songs (e.g., "Eleanor
Rigby," "She's Leaving Home," "Mother Nature's Son"). And one shouldn't
mistake the Beatles' resultant incredible wealth for having come from an
affluent background. They certainly knew what it was like to grow up in the
working class. But enough about that...

And nothing about anything else,

Dave Gershman


Date: Thu, 14 Aug 1997 08:48:43 -0700 (PDT)
Message-Id: <l03020900b0186ca1671a@[]>
Subject: Upsy Daisy, X-fading and BAM

   Hello All!!;
      I've pretty much been gone the entire summer and I'm admittedly *way*
behind in my Chalkhills reading so please forgive me if someone has already
brought this up (actually I'd be surprised if this hasn't yet been
      While in New York recently I picked up my copy of "Upsy Daisy".
(Before I even listened to it I figured it was worth the $11.99 for the
inside picture alone!). Needless to say, I enjoyed it and it made a very
long road trip quite a bit more pleasant. Even though I've heard these
songs thousands of times it's always kind of cool to hear them in a
different order.
      Anyway, one thing that really caught my ear was hearing some of the
tunes *minus* the cross-fade that accompanies them on their respective
albums. (For those of you who don't know, "cross-fade" refers to a song
beginning while the previous song is still fading out). The most obvious
example from "Upsy" would be "Chalkhills And Children". On the O&L version,
the long droning C synth-note intro is not nearly as noticeable because
"Miniature Sun" is still playing. The first time I listened to "Upsy Daisy"
I had to do a double-take when "Chalkhills" came on! (It was almost like I
was about to hear something *new*!! haha).
      "This World Over" is another "Seagulls" on the vocal
 I have always thought that XTC were masters of the cross-fade. I
particularly like how they will begin a song right on the "1" of the song
that is fading out (ie: "Down In The Cockpit" into "English Roundabout").
Anyone else notice this stuff or am I just *really* jonesing for some new
XTC music?!?! (Thank God I discovered the Kinks in the interim between
albums!! But that's a whole 'nother post...).
       Oh and by the way, there is a very cool little interview with Andy
in the August 8th issue of BAM , a free California music magazine. For
those of you not in California, you might be able to see it on their
Website which is found at, although don't quote me on
that. I haven't checked out the site myself....
       That's all for now!!
                           John Wedemeyer(


Message-Id: <>
Date: Thu, 14 Aug 1997 09:28:30 -0700
From: The Village Green <>
Subject: Are You Receiving Me?

> Hey , it's getting awfully XEROX like lately on the list.
> Everyone is writing the same thing.

Writing about the same thing is ok, just not when it doesn't bear any
fruit (like O&L).

I have a suggestion.  Over at the Kinks Preservation Society (KPS) there
is a song of the week (SOTW) and often a query or question of the week
(QOTW).  The best thing about this set up is that it directs some
interesting debate for at least the next few digests and often provides a
launching point for related topics.  I, for one, look forward to finding
out what everyone thinks about these particular items each week.  "We can
all be as one if for only a very short time."

Even though I've only been on board for a couple of weeks let me be so
bold as to offer my services in this matter.  At the beginning of each
week I will post a SOTW and a QOTW.  I defer to some of my more learned
Chalkhillers and invite (please, please, please) suggestions on either
topic to be mailed to me directly and I will hold on to them for future
use.  Everyone must have a question or two that they would like to bounce
off the others.  The songs can be anything from XTC or side projects,
A-side, B-side, upside, downside.  The questions shouldn't be so obscure
that they are only debate material for one in every million XTC fans.

If anyone is personally offended by my arrogance please drop me a line
and I will cease and desist.  If you like the idea then also drop me a
line so that I will know it's worth the effort.

Let's start a partial week with the following:

SOTW #1 - Making Plans For Nigel

QOTW #1 - Which album contains the best opening track?  Does the song lay
the groundwork for what follows on that album or is it just a killer track
by itself?  (Groundwork being mood, tone, topic, concept, etc.).

(Dig out all them albums)

I picked a universally well known song to kick off the SOTW process. 
It's one most of us would know and a heck of a song to boot.

Now any Chalkhilling KPSers will recognize this QOTW as one from the KPS
a few weeks back.  I don't mind lifting it because I suggested it to

Often songs or questions are debated well into the following week(s) so
there are definitely no time limits here.

A possible response to the SOTW would be:

"Wow, this was the first XTC track I ever heard and it turned me on to
the group.  It's catchy and you can dance to it, I give it a ten."

For the QOTW how about:

"Hey, that Peter Pumpkinhead was sure a lively track.  It was upbeat and
made my legs go this way and that.  While it didn't define how the rest
of the album would follow it stands out as a great track."

Now I'm just rattling on here but I hope you get the idea.  The longer the
answer is quite often the more interesting it is.  My own responses would be
quite different, other than that Nigel was my introduction to XTC.


The Kinks mailing list is available from Neil Ottenstein at

Yes and what *were* you doing in the lubricant aisle?


'Don't let the loveless ones sell you a world wrapped in grey'


Message-Id: <>
Date: Thu, 14 Aug 1997 09:48:02 -0700
From: "MARK G. CUEVAS" <>
Subject: Music to Chalk by - or not

>From one of the other Mark's:

>First of all: The Greatest Living Englishman is a great album.
>It's not perfect (after all it's not by XTC, is it?) but it's a fine piece of
>work from a wonderful weird and very English songwriter/performer. I
>find it a bit embarrassing that someone on this list would dismiss it as (i
>quote) "an embarrassment".

I completely agree with your assessment that TGLE is a great
album.  When I first heard TGLE, I took to it right away.  Excellent Pop,
thought I.  Listening to this around Christmas time was particularly
enjoyable.  I really need to get the most recent one.

And from John Christensen:

>Then came The Mommyheads.  Full of confidence--based on glowing
>reviews read here--I searched my used CD haunts until I finally found it.
>Excitement soon turned to revulsion:  It sounded less like XTC and more
>like Weezer Lite.  The singer's voice sent my pets scurrying for cover.
>It was a sad moment:  After two years of wonderful tips--tips devoured
>with utter confidence--I had bought my first piece of crap, IMHO.

I too bought this on the recommendation of Chalkers and was vastly
disappointed.   Moreover, my opinion has not changed for the better after
letting it sit awhile.  The thing that keeps popping in my head as I listen to
The Mommyheads, is "this is not important music."  Most of the songs are
replete with cliches - both lyrical and musical.  Give me more Yazbek, or
Martin Newell or Jason Falkner.  The Mommyheads are not even close.


Message-Id: <>
From: "Mark Strijbos" <>
Organization: The Little Lighthouse
Date: Fri, 15 Aug 1997 00:32:47 +0000
Subject: Black Sea Food

Dear Chalkers,


In my post on the Black Sea title thing I completely forgot
the bit about Andy wanting to call it "Work Under Pressure" -
and that explains the diving gear...
According to the Chalkhills & Children biography Ian Reid, XTC's
manager at the time  and not Virgin rejected this title.
The cover pictures were already taken and had to be used anyway so a
compromise that made nobody happy was reached.

Maybe this will teach me not to trust my memory and to keep my mouth
shut if i see egg on someone else's face ;)
And many thanks to David F. for alerting me  - mea culpa

humble daisiely,
Mark Strijbos
at The Little Lighthouse; the XTC website @
===> The Random XTC Quote <===
We all need a big reduction in the amount of tears


Date: 15 AUG 97 10:51:17 AST
Subject: Non-XtC Content (for a change)
Message-ID: <>

Re: Alphabetically filing CDs: Okay okay, Yankovic, Yardbirds - I new my
theory had holes in it, but I anticipated clever responses and indeed enjoyed
them  ;^)

Mark Strijbos:  yep, that's exactly how my CDs are filed:  XtC, then Teste
Dinner, then Yazbek.

Brad Johnson:  most of us "down under" alphabeticize the same as you folx.
Where we differ is in dates - day first, month second, year last (eg today is
15/8/97).  Also, water goes down the plughole in the opposite direction down
here.  I'm left-handed too, if that's any help   :-)

Re: Beatles mono/stereo mixes: Separate mono and stereo mixes were made for
all Beatles albums up to and including the White Album. The early "stereo"
stuff was actually binaural or two-track mixed from 3- or 4-track masters;
that's why you get instruments mostly in one channel and voices in t'other.
It's also why George Martin chose mono masters for the CD reissues of the
first four albums - that's how he wanted them to sound: much punchier.  There
are significant differences between stereo and mono mixes of some
songs/albums, particularly the White Album.  All albums were issued in both
formats until Abbey Road, then Let It Be which were only ever issued in
stereo.  I consider myself a bit of an "anorak" (trainspotter) on this subject
so for further discussion, please feel free to email me privately at:  Or check out this most excellent Beatles website which
fully explores the mono/stereo issue:

chunder from down under


Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 14 Aug 1997 18:58:00 -0600
From: Jonathan Christensen <>

Interesting that you would rip on The Mommyheads CD with all this Kinks
talk flying about. The first thing that came to my mind was the Kinks
"Sleepwalker". My favorite of the Arista era. Oh well . . .to each his
own I suppose.


End of Chalkhills Digest #3-154

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