Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #3-69

          Chalkhills Digest, Volume 3, Number 69

                 Sunday, 19 January 1997

Today's Topics:

                   Re: Steve Lillywhite
                      Re: A Capella
              XTC (not quite) on "Jeopardy!"
           Itsa complicated game!  so I am told
                   Shake You Donkey Up!
             An ad you might find interesting
           Hello, I'm a new member of the list
                       Re: Thompson
                        Re: 10-12
                     Something Rare?
                 XTC Royalties for demos
                  Canadian source of CDs
                         10 songs
         Must be a Clash, there's no alternative
                     All this and XTC
                Fossil Screwed / 10 songs?
               Re: Chalkhills Digest #3-68
                   Bach / Cooking Vinyl
                 Hares will kick and leap


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The views expressed herein are those of the individual authors.

Their voices sob with grief.


Date: Fri, 17 Jan 1997 07:38:06 -0500 (EST)
From: "Christopher R. Coolidge" <>
Subject: Re: Steve Lillywhite
Message-ID: <>

  J.D., Steve Lillywhite is still very busy; he produced both of the Dave
Matthews Band's albums, and co-produced the most recent Phish album. With
the numbers both bands have been moving I'm sure he's doing very well and
may not have to work again if he doesn't want to. Maybe, in that case,
he'll agree to produce XTC just for the fun of it next time.


Date: Fri, 17 Jan 1997 07:46:59 -0500 (EST)
From: "Christopher R. Coolidge" <>
Subject: Re: A Capella
Message-ID: <>

  Ben, a small correction. Todd Rundgren's 2nd Wind album(which I didn't
bother buying either)was released in the early '90's. His A Capella album
was released in '85, and is for my money the most brilliant piece of work
he's ever put out; every sound on the album except for the rhythm
tracks(some of them) originates from his own voice, direct or sampled.
Even the songs themselves are great on their own. I saw him live
supporting the album backed by tapes, sequences, and a fourteen voice
choir. Definitely different.


Message-ID: <c=US%a=_%p=AETNA%l=AETNA/AETNA/>
From: "Witter, Karl F" <>
Subject: XTC (not quite) on "Jeopardy!"
Date: Fri, 17 Jan 1997 08:34:00 -0500

>>(From me)Like Josh's theory

>(Josh) I must not have been clear enough. I wasn't theorizing [they] only
>have so much talent before they just "run out" [but] many people *assume*
>that as fact and use it to justify their dislike of later albums

Ohhhh. No problem; my inferring was no more accurate.


Tuesday's Jeopardy show, maybe 1/14: Some clue mentioned a well-known
British airline businessman who ballooned. While the actual contestants
were fumbling around with "Who is Freddie Laker?" I shouted "Virgin
Records sucks! Who is Richard Branson?" repeatedly, while bemoaning that
I couldn't be there to unbutton my dress shirt and display an XTC tee or
talisman. This I visualized in the time it took for all three players to
fluff on the clue and Alex Trebek to provide the answer.

Caught in my superficial, nonexistant, fairy-story wuh-hunderlannnnd,

Non-XTC content: Heard Smashing Pumpkins cover The Cars' "You're All I've
Got Tonight" on the radio and found myself longing for the dulcet tones of
the golden-throated Ric Ocasek and Ben Orr. The remake was pretty shallow on
all fronts I can think of, and Corgan's (sp?) singing didn't do a thing for
me, even though a multi-octave range is not my first prerequisite in a rock
singer. Adds nothing to the original and takes away its sense of time.


From: McGREGOC <>
Date: Fri, 17 Jan 1997 14:18:15 +00
Subject: Itsa complicated game!  so I am told
Message-ID: <>

Hello again!

I was looking at the last digest again and read "Simon Knight's"
post.  I'm sorry you are feeling rather negative about the whole

>>Or does he want all the rewards with none of the effort?

I'm not looking to flame, so please do not take what I say as a
torching.  Its just my opinion.

I think that these musicians have put every effort into making these
albums.  Okay so they don't tour.  They have gone about this different
from the usual route.  That shouldn't stop them from being
successful.  Especially in this day and age when bands are made more
from videos than from concerts.  As renouned as they are, it seems
weird that more effort has not been put into promoting them.  They
are well respected in the music community because of their
commitment to quality music.  That takes effort.  It just doesn't
happen.  I remember reading in one of the Little Expresses Andy said
something to the effect that they
were considered a trophy for the company.  No effort was put into
promotion but yet Virgin wanted to keep them like a status symbol.

I think I would be just a offended as Mr. P. is if I put out my
heart and soul  for display and was told its not good enough to give
to the public.  What a confusing place to be.  Status symbol for
company but not marketable.
 Didn't that happen with Mummer and Nonsuch?  They were rejected.
I feel for the man.  He has been through a lot the past few years.
Let him sort it out. I think he just wants to air his greivences and
feel justified for them.  He is a first class artist who wants to
share his vision but keeps coming up against walls.

 He is obviously excited about doing the new
albums and I have no doubt that they will live up to the same quality
as the others.  They deserve to be sucessful.  And thats all they
want I think.  To be sucessful at something that is enjoyed and on
their own terms.  Seems to be a common goal of most people.

If they had sacrificed their vision just to do what Virgin thought
would be commercially profitable to be sucessful,  do you think even
half of us would be here conversing about the brilliance of their
music?  hard to say. I don't think they would have been happy with it
and probably would have drowned with all the other bands that do what
is considered profitable.  They rise for awhile but then are cast out
because the trend is over.  I can put up with his need to rant
when I know that  THAT is not all that is there.  There is a
brilliant musician that touches my soul.  I can forgive him because
he opened my eyes to how wonderful music can be.  I hope that doesn't
sound to sopy.

Keep the faith, Simon Knight!  Its okay to be frustrated about this.
Its tough waiting but it will be well worth the wait.   I can
feel it in my bones!

I was thinking about this a 5am!  I rushed to the lab so I could get
this out. Whew!  Hopefully I won't fall as I climb of my

I just got my Nonsuch CD back from my landlady.  How sweet it is!
I have exposed her to the beauty of XTC.  She liked it, I'm glad to
report.  Even wants to tape a few songs.  Ever since I have
mentioned them to her she has taken it apon herself to quiz others.
In doing this she came across a man who claimed to know Mr. P.!
Can you believe this?  My landlady who's name is Margaret.
Incredible.  Inconceivable!

And thus ends another confusing post from yours truly,



Message-ID: <>
Date: Fri, 17 Jan 1997 13:35:25 +0000
From: Heather Tinkler <>
Organization: The University of Oklahoma
Subject: Shake You Donkey Up!

Hello everybody!
     This being the new semester and all, most people have to buy books,
which is relatively expensive.. but lucky lucky me!! My schedule is art,
art, art, botany, botany lab. I have all the art books, and by a
wonderful stroke of luck, my boyfriend is a botany major and is lending
me his books and expertise! Whoo hoo!!
     About now you are saying," What the hell does this have to do with
XTC?" Well, I will tell you. On a whim and major shopping mode, I went
to Hastings to pick up English Settlement with my would-be-book-money. I
ended up buying them out of XTC.. here's what I got..
The Big Express
English Settlement
Rag & Bone Buffet
Oranges & Lemons

The only one that has been given proper attention is TBE, I'm saving the
rest to memorize one by glorious one..

I remember something about Shake You Donkey Up being said a few months
ago... I think someone didn't like it? I LOVE this song!!! I must listen
to it at least once a day. What does it mean, exactly? It doesn't make a
whole lot of sense, lyrically..

heather....just heather

My roomate and boyfriends response to my recent obsession..
Richard," Uh-Oh, I think she's become an XTC groupie (in addition to
frogs and TMBG)"
Lorna," Well, at least she won't (can't) drag you all over the country
to see them live."
Richard," (sigh of relief.. he didn't like when I made him come when we
drove 12 hours to see TMBG) REALLY?!"
Me," Yes, they've broken up, so chill. O;( "


Message-Id: <v01550100af0574187008@[]>
Date: Fri, 17 Jan 1997 12:54:49 -0600
From: (Guy in a Dress)
Subject: Songs'n'Stuff


Okay, I'm rested and settled.  Now, I plunge myself into the

>>10 songs an album seems a bit stingy in this CD age.  Why not make
>>just the one album with 20 songs?

Aaah, because perhaps the styles are too disparate?  It seems that
they want to do an electric album and a more orchestral one; I also
remember something about releasing them together, as a set.

>Does anyone else think that Genesis sucked after [Gabriel] left?

I've never really cared for Genesis all that much but I'll take
him over Phil Collins (ergh!) ANYday.

>Back before you were born, Josh, the average (vinyl) album had 10-12 songs,
>and folks were quite happy with that.

Unless they were released in Britain by certain groups, like say The
in which case they had 14 songs.  However, the American companies decided
to chop a few off of each one and, with singles, create entirely "new"
So perhaps this was just an American norm...(it's that consumer culture, I
tell ya!)

> "metaphoricity."

I thought you were trying to say "metaphor city", which, while somewhat
surfer-dude sounding, would have made your point quite nicely.

>This album has some of the worst Beatles covers ever perpetrated.

Ever heard John Denver's version of "Eleanor Rigby"?  Yikes.

>Oh, how my loins ached to bear her children...

I'm not going to think too much about that.

Oh dear, I've gotten WAY off-topic.  Seeyall later.  kmarkman-- email me!



Message-ID: <>
Date: Fri, 17 Jan 97 14:19:00 -0500
From: dgershmn <>
Organization: AMS
Subject: An ad you might find interesting

I was reading a recent edition of the Boston Phoenix the other day, and came
across the following ad for a relatively new (I think) radio station that
goes my the moniker "The River." Anyway, the ad went like this (I thought
the whole text of the ad might be more effective):


Some people tell us..."It's like you snuck into my house and stole my CD
collection and put it on the radio."



Kate Bush - U2 - Barenaked Ladies - Dave Matthews - Roxy Music - Sarah
McLachlan - Steely Dan - Phish - The English Beat - Tori Amos - Tom Petty -
Talking Heads - John Prine - The Waterboys - Squeeze - Clapton - Indigo
Girls - The Clash - The The - Blues Traveler - Richard Thompson - Bob Marley
- The Police - R.E.M. - Cowboy Junkies - ***XTC*** [emphasis is mine] - The
Cranberries - Shawn Colvin - Grateful Dead - The Style Council - Los Lobos -
Mazzy Star - Elvis Costello


Well, I was surprised (pleasantly) to see XTC "make the list," although the
cynical side of me figures it's more marketing than anything and the only
XTC songs on their playlist will be "Mayor of Simpleton," "Peter
Pumpkinhead," "Dear God," and maybe an occasional "Senses Working Overtime."
But still, it's nice to see that they haven't been totally forgotten by
radio and are even being used to help market a station. In any case, I'm
bound to listen to the station more frequently than I would have otherwise
(not to mention that they have some other excellent choices in that list -
it does indeed seem to be at a subselection of my music collection).

Anyway, just thought you might be interested!

Dave Gershman

P.S. Disclaimer: I'm not connected in any way with the station!


Date: Fri, 17 Jan 1997 11:35:20 -0700
From: Craig Larson <Craig_L@TSJC.CCCOES.EDU>
Subject: Hello, I'm a new member of the list
Message-id: <>

I just recently got a new computer installed in my office at work, and in
surfing around, I came upon the Chalkhills listserv.  Just what I need, I
thought, since I'm a huge XTC fan and have long been curious whether there
would ever be a followup to _Nonsuch_.  Imagine my delight at lurking and
reading the digest over the past few days, only to discover that 1997 _is_
the year!

I first discovered XTC when a good friend of mine played _Skylarking_ and
_Mummer_ for me, back around 1985.  I have to say I really didn't care for
either of them at first, but I soon came around.  XTC is the only band that
I bought both cassettes and, later, CDs of all their albums.  I think
_Skylarking_ is still, overall, my favorite (I love "Season Cycle,"
"Grass/Summer's Cauldron," "The Man Who Sailed Around His Soul," etc.), but
I'm also a great fan of the XTC sound on _Black Sea_, _Drums and Wires_, and
_English Settlement_.  Heck, I even like _White Music_ and _Go 2_.  In fact,
I don't believe I've ever heard an XTC song I didn't like, though the Dukes
of Stratosphear sort of push the edge a bit for me.

Well, anyway, my purpose was to introduce myself and I guess I've done that.
Looking forward to future digests.

Craig Larson
Trinidad, CO


Message-ID: <>
Date: Fri, 17 Jan 97 15:36:00 -0500
From: dgershmn <>
Organization: AMS
Subject: Bangle-banging

Okay, enough! No more bashing the Bangles! Granted, they lost it toward the
end, but they were NOT merely a record-company marketing creation. If all
you know is "Walk Like an Egyptian" or "Manic Monday," you're missing out on
some fine stuff. Namely, their first full album, "All Over the Place," which
is one of the best sets of guitar pop released in the '80s. If the Beatles
had been women, they might have sounded like that album (the best-known
songs on which are probably "Hero Takes a Fall" and their cover of "Going
Down to Liverpool").

Boy oh boy. People hear a couple of songs and they think they know a group.
Wouldn't you just hate it if people did that to XTC? (Oh that's right, they
do...)  :)

Dave Gershman


Message-Id: <v01540b03af0588eb2b36@[]>
Date: Fri, 17 Jan 1997 13:00:57 -0700
From: (Eb)
Subject: Re: Thompson

>From: "Purnell, Vernon" <>
> Richard Thompson divided his last release you? me? us? into 2 discs,
>acoustic & electric, and packaged them together for the price of a
>single disc, his reasoning being that a) the songs flowed together
>better that way and b) cds have become too long for a single listening
>experience for most people.  I tend to agree with him.  The "grab bag"
>approach doesn't interest me very much -- I prefer a more unified feel.

I loved that album, but it was a little dismaying that both discs COULD
have fit on one disc. (I think the album's 73 minutes total, if I remember
right.) And it WAS a few dollars more expensive than a single disc, though
much cheaper than many double discs (particularly, double discs packaged in
the old-style "fat" jewel boxes). It wasn't as cheap as the new Wilco
double-disc, though.

Oh well, nothing will ever eclipse the skimpiness of The Beatles 1962-1966



Message-Id: <v01540b04af058afea7f9@[]>
Date: Fri, 17 Jan 1997 13:30:58 -0700
From: (Eb)
Subject: Re: 10-12

>From: dgershmn <>
>Back before you were born, Josh, the average (vinyl) album had 10-12 songs,
>and folks were quite happy with that. Now, thanks to the CD, which can hold
>much more music, it seems that musicians (or, at least, record companies)
>feel like they have to fill all that space just because it's available. Or
>maybe it's pressure from the fans, who feel that if they're going to have to
>pay twice as much for a CD as they did for an album, they should at least
>get twice as much music.

There's another factor at work here: The labels' promotional schedules are
far more crowded now than during the '60s and '70s. Album release dates get
pushed back, back and back by labels looking for the perfect marketing
"window," and while this is happening, artists write more and more songs,
which they want to add to the album, which in turn pushes the release date
back, back and back.... Infinite circle.

I have no problem with 40-50 minute albums. I prefer them. However, very
few artists  -- if any? I can't name an artist who has released an album
every year in the '90s, can you? Neil Young and Sebadoh come close, not but
not quite -- are able/permitted to release an album a year anymore (much
less two or three, as in the '60s), so if a group releases 45-minute albums
nowadays, you get a lot less music overall. Such is the industry beast.

Padded, overlong album of the year: Tool's Aenima. Blecch. And you'd think
they could write one decent song within all that time, wouldn't you?



Message-Id: <>
From: "J. D. SMX" <>
Organization: Access Tucson
Date: Fri, 17 Jan 1997 15:05:15 -0700
Subject: Something Rare?

Yo List,

I just got back from the reca-stoe where I purchased something I've
never seen before.  It's called,"Radios in Motion a history of XTC.
It's got The Balled of Peter Pumpkinhead (edit), The Mayor of
Simpleton, King for a day, Dear God, Grass, Love an a Farmboys Wages,
Senses Working Overtime and Making Plans for Nigel.  On the inside,
it says,"From the forthcoming album NONSUCH," PRO-CD-4397.

Is this something rare? I never knew it existed until today.

Heading: Girl Groups.

Does Hole qualify as a girl group?  'Cause I think they rock, I
like Courtney Love and I haven't even seen the movie yet.  SMX

Little did I know that on a rainy day, all the little wishes I'd put
away would bring, YOU.

Video Engineer
Access Tucson


Message-Id: <>
From: Trent Turner <>
Subject: XTC Royalties for demos
Date: Fri, 17 Jan 1997 16:32:44 -0700

Ok, I've been thinking about this for some time and have seen a couple of
posts related to the idea, so I'll throw it up & see who shoots it.

Could someone, say our good buddy Mitch, set up a bank account that us folks
on the mailing list could send money to for our possession of demos?

That way, we could feel much freer about possessing, discussing and sharing

This model has already worked very well, just take a look at shareware.

Anyone who makes a copy of a demo, or bootleg, or whatever, could just
include the account name/number and address with their copy and put the
burden on the receiver to pay up if they like the music.

Granted, we're probably not talking about 10's of thousands of dollars in
our boys pockets, but any increase would be beneficial.

Even if they were to not get a contract anytime soon, I'm sure there is
enough technology & savvy folks available on this list to slam some of the
demos onto CD, and make them available using the shareware model.

If this worked, we could probably talk the boys into maintaining this type
of communication even post contract.

Then again, this could all just be a pipedream and I could be completely
clueless.  However, the more society can get by without lawyers, etc, the
better, no?

Trent Turner
Is this a great time, or what? :-)

[Attachment omitted, unknown MIME type or encoding (application/ms-tnef)]


Date: Fri, 17 Jan 1997 15:38:24 -0800 (PST)
Subject: Canadian source of CDs
Message-id: <9700178535.AA853544163@FINSMTP1.FIN.GOV.BC.CA>

  In case anyone is interested in obtaining either the Canadian
  pressing of Skylarking (the one with the original running order
  intact, and "Dear God" tacked on at the end) or Fossil Fuel, you can
  get them from CD Plus, a mail order outlet in Ontario.

  They have a web site;
  gets you to the meat of the site.

  If you don't have a web browser, they have a toll-free telephone
  number:  1-800-263-4020 (note this may not work outside Canada and
  the USA).

  In either case you'll need your credit card to order.

  They have Skylarking for $14.98 (+ shipping and handling), as well
  as Fossil Fuel for $21.98 ... remember that these are in Canadian
  dollars, which is currently worth about 80 U.S. cents (i.e.
  Skylarking would be about $12 in American funds).

  Disclaimer:  I am in no way affiliated with CD Plus (it is to the
  best of my knowledge the best mail order operation in Canada), and
  am just providing this information as a service to the folks on



Message-ID: <>
Date: Fri, 17 Jan 1997 06:28:50 -0800
From: Keith Hanlon <>
Subject: 10 songs

In the last post, a lot of people were complaining about XTC's plans for
2 CDs in 1997, with "only 10 songs" each. Many people felt that this was
too little...

I can't tell you how sick I am of LONG compact discs (anything over 50
minutes). Just because we have capability of 75 minutes CDs, does an
artist have to fill it up? Think about it... Would you want 45 minutes
of XTC's best work by itself, creating an amazing, cohesive album, or
would you want 45 minutes of killer tracks and a half an hour of
mediocre filler? I know, I know... many of you say "XTC can do no
wrong," but you are all die hard fans (and I am too). Those who are not
(the majority of th record buying public) will want to own a great album
that they'll put on again and again. Very few artists (IMO) can deliver
a 75 minute MASTERPIECE. XTC, on the other hand, made a masterpiece with
Skylarking, clocking in at 45:48 (if you have the one with Mermaid

I guess I'm rambling. All I want to say is that I'd rather have 2 albums
that are XTC's definitive statments, rather than "here's all the stuff
we've written in the last 5 years." Save the rest for the CD singles and

A great example of an album that is way too long: Prince's

Great examples of short albums that are amazing:
the La's (coincidently, produced by Steve Lillywhite)
the Beatles - "Revolver"
Prince - "Purple Rain" ("A great album, but a deeply flawed movie" - Fox

You get the idea.


(go Ian, go Ian, go Ian, go Ian!)


Date: Fri, 17 Jan 1997 18:59:34 -0600
Message-Id: <v01530500af057b482282@[]>
From: (John Yuelkenbeck)
Subject: Must be a Clash, there's no alternative

To dgershmn:

Don't underrate "Sandinista!" I agree that quantity and quality are two
different things, but they are not mutually exclusive. I remember when it
was released, I ate it up and still wanted more. Maybe your point would
have been better made (at least with me) if you'd used Keith Jarrettt as
your example.

no guru, no method, no signature . . .


Date: Fri, 17 Jan 1997 20:04:56 -0500 (EST)
Message-ID: <>
Subject: All this and XTC

Hey all!

Lyric misinterpretations:

I always thought it was "She has sex while singing in the sauna"  You are not
alone, and I don't have a (particularly) dirty mind.

Not to mention "Wonder Annual".  Man, I almost hesitate to tell you folx what
I thought this song was about.  But we're all friends here, right?  My copy
of the demos had the tunes written in all caps and the way it was written, it
looked to me like Wonder Animal.

[I perpetuated the error when I shared the demos with Chalkfriends, so to
those who got them from me, sorry for the mistake.]

So that's how I heard the song.  And I thought it was soooo sensual.  "Open
up your wonder animal ... and (something something) may I lay and look?"
 Yowza!!!  Of course annual makes more sense, but I still like my version.

(Of course my demos tape was stolen with all the others in my 120-tape case
when my car was taken for a joy-ride. :-(  )

From: "Ben Gott" <>

>>Peter Gabriel rocks. I just got "Cv," a compilation of videos from the "So"
album -- including my favorite song of all time, "Mercy Street." Does anyone
else think that Genesis sucked after he left?

No one in my house!!  In fact, I think the two records just after his
departure (A Trick of the Tail and Wind and Wuthering) are just incredible.
 Steve Hackett's leaving seems to me to have made more difference in style.
 But I love them all the way down the line.  Can't wait to see the "darker"
direction they're supposed to be going in -- and who the new singer will be.

From: jes <>

>>I, for one, have never understood the appeal for Siouxie Sioux, but that's
me.  She obviously has her fans.  Then again, so does Robert Smith and
Marylin Manson, which proves that there is no end to the supply for suckers
in this world.

Gee, I like Siouxie and the Cure both, but how you can lump Manson in there I
can't comprehend.


>>it was amazing how harsh some of your favourite CD's can sound when you
know the person listening is hating it.

I know exactly what you mean.  I can't stand to listen to XTC with my husband
around, not even to torture him.  (he's in the "doesn't like the voice"
category)  I feel all self-conscious and it ruins the experience for me.  So
I have to sneak.

To: Philip M Adamek <adamek@ACSU.Buffalo.EDU>

I'm sorry, but I have to reject both metaphoricalness and metaphoricity.
 Both are way to long and cumbersome.  Much better to vary the sentence
cadence and say the quality of being metaphorical or something.  I know.
 That's cumbersome too.  Say symbolism.  Whatever.  But please cut the

From: Simon <> (in response to Cheryl)

>>Depending on what you class as "girl bands" there are some brilliant female
artists/female led bands - Catatonia, Echobelly, Lush, Nut, Hole, Liz Phair,
Tiger (male vocalist, but mainly female musicians), PJ Harvey, Skunk Anansie,

Don't forget Elastica (also a male drummer I think) and Luscious Jackson.
Or the Breeders.  Not to mention the Runaways.  Not that I liked them, but
though the record company used the all-girl factor to promote them, you
couldn't say they didn't rock.

But then I still like Alanis, so sue me.

--Da Melsta


Message-Id: <>
From: "Simon Knight" <>
Date: Sat, 18 Jan 1997 11:34:36 +0000
Subject: Fossil Screwed / 10 songs?

I don't really want to say anymore on the subject, but just to

Josh wrote:
>I don't understand why you refer to it as a "ripoff."

I was just paraphrasing Colin's attitude that rehashing unreleased
material was cynical exploitation.  I called it an honest ripoff
because we would all buy it and enjoy it anyway.

>I don't think you can put the blame on Andy here. The band really had
>nothing to do with Fossil Fuel.

They agreed to let Virgin put it out.  They might not have liked the
idea, but knowing that the main market for such an album was the fans
who already owned the material anyway (and let's be realistic, the
world at large was not waiting with baited breath for an XTC singles
compliation), it sends out a message that XTC doesn't care about us.
Andy and the design clinic could have come up with a better booklet,
the band could have been interviewed on the songs for the booklet,
they could have recorded at least one new song, or added on a couple
of unreleased tracks from the vaults.  That's all the effort it would
have taken.

A moulded plastic cover doesn't mean much compared to
something new inside.  Fighting with Virgin makes no difference.
You'd swallow your pride for your fans one last time and try to make
the final release a little special.

And before you say hatred was running high, he still agreed to
promote the album, didn't he?

Enough of that anyway.  Can we drop the topic?  I didn't mean to
start it, i was just annoyed at the time.

Dave said:
>I'd prefer 10 excellent songs on a CD with plenty of extra room left
>over than a full CD consisting of as much filler as quality songs.

OK, in Australia CD's are heavily taxed.  One new release CD will set
you back anywhere between $30-32.  This works out about $39 American.
 If they're both in the one pack the price jumps up to about $45-49 US
(unless you sell smashing pumpkins numbers, which i don't see XTC
doing).  Now if they're seperate releases... well, imagine paying $78
US for two albums that could have fitted on onto one CD.  You'll see
why i'm not too thrilled with the idea.

(Any american's who have traded CD's with me might now want to
realise how far they've come out ahead).

Besides, it's not 1979 anymore, records are dead and our expectations
are raised higher than 10 songs a record.  (Even back when 10 was the
standard, the Beatles thought it was a rip-off, which is why they
used to deliver more songs than they had to, on the englishr
releases anyway).

The other thing:  if there's another four year wait ahead for any new
material i want as many new songs as i can get.  (I still remember
Andy saying they'd follow up Nonsuch within a year!  AHH!)


From: "Keith P. Hanlon" <>
Message-Id: <>
Subject: Re: Chalkhills Digest #3-68
Date: Fri, 17 Jan 1997 20:59:26 -0500 (EST)

> Yes, he does work with Kirsty MacColl lately, since he
> is (presumably) sleeping with her.

What does one have to do with the other? Does one have to sleep with Steve
Lillywhite in order to be produced by him? Wow. U2 sold out earlier than I


Message-ID: <>
Date: Sat, 18 Jan 1997 01:07:20 +0000
From: Phil Hetherington <>
Subject: Bach / Cooking Vinyl

2 things:

My crappy mail program is refusing to include the headers, so I don't
know who said this, but anyway:

>It's good to be Bach!

This has been bugging me for a while - exactly where does Colin say
this? I assume it's on the BBC concert CD, but unless I'm very much
mistaken, he says "back". Which, again unless I'm very much mistaken,
is pronounced differently (Bach sounds like bark).

So, either
  (a) It's not on that CD,
  (b) He says it quietly in the background,
  (c) Americans have funny accents and consequently can't tell their
      back from their Bach, or
  (d) It's all a big wind up and I've fallen for it.

Which is it to be?

And it didn't say who wrote this, but we all know anyway:

>And now the news . . .
>I just spoke with Andy and he provided me with some juicy tidbits of
>info. Not quite as juicey as you'd like and also maybe not the kind of juice
>you're looking forward to drinking but news nonetheless.
>While the Setanta rumor was false, recently Andy met with someone from a
>small label called Cooking Vinyl and he was very excited about what he
>offered. The band would most probably sign to a major label in the US for
>distribution and promotion purposes, and an indie for Europe and the rest of
>the world. Paul Bailey is going to New York in ten days to meet with several
>new possible suitors.

Now, if Cooking Vinyl signed XTC I would be a happy person. They're a
good label, not *that* small (Tom Robinson? Billy Bragg? The Wedding
Present? etc.), but small enough to give XTC the attention - and, I
think, the freedom - they need.

They do distribute in the US too, though I'm not sure in what numbers.

Most importantly, Cooking Vinyl are Goats Don't Shave's label. And GDS
are the band responsible for my all time favourite album, 'The Rusty
Razor' (1992 - originally on another label though).

Thumbs up from me then. :-)

Sorry if I'm repeating anyone, still got a couple of chalkhills to
catch up on.

My 'Best of '96' will have to wait because I typed it in on another PC
and forgot to copy it to floppy. Before I do post it, I want *everyone*
to rush out and buy the CD EP 'Shine' by Toucan. Trust me on this...
(Larger UK stores should have it, or at least order it). Just so you
know what I'm on about when I eventually do post it... :-p



Date: Fri, 17 Jan 1997 22:23:54 -0500 (EST)
Message-Id: <>
From: Joshua Hall-Bachner <>
Subject: Hares will kick and leap

>>Closer inspection revealed a new brand of aftershave named
>>after our Swindonians... with matching deodorant.

Hmmm. Let's see, already this year we have found an official XTC soft drink
and official XTC aftershave. What's next?

>The "grab bag" approach doesn't interest me very much -- I prefer
>a more unified feel.

I tend to agree here. While an album full of songs that are very diverse
stylistically can achieve great "flow" and feel to it, more often than not
it ends up sounding choppy and meandering around more or less randomly. I
like the idea of an acoustic/electric pairing, especially if (as in that
example) you could get both for the price of a single CD!

>Has anyone else heard "Easter Theater?" What do you think?

Yup. Personally, I quite like it. Andy takes his well-worn "changing
seasons" metaphor again and applies it this time to a lover. Some people
have expressed dislike at the lyrics at the beginning ("Chocolate nipple
brown," "Like the ground your breasts swell") but I think it's kinda neat.

> I guess my point is that if Andy and Co. want to trim down the number of
>songs per album to those that they feel are the best of the bunch, I'd be
>perfectly happy with that. No sense filling it up just for the sake of it.

If I had any fear whatsoever that the band would have trouble coming up with
30 good songs to put on the album, I'd agree with you. But remember that XTC
*always* write far more songs than they can use. So far they already have
over 40 songs which are in contention for the next album. Of those, I
personally know that at least sixteen of those are excellent. I seriously
doubt that the next fourteen are all horrible.

>(a huge thanks to Keith!)

Which one?

>For those of you who havn't heard the new demo's I can agree with many
>earlier postings that there are some very strong songs.  "Hit songs"....
>well that's another thing.

I'd have to agree here. There really doesn't seem to be a single big hit in
the bunch. Not even a single "catchy" song. Prince of Orange is about as
close as we get.

>Sorry for the low, actually zero, XTC content but I've been working away at
>a rambling, opinionated and confused XTC diatribe thingy and it was either
>post that or this.

What? We missed a rambling, opinionated and confused XTC diatribe thingy for
*that*? :)

Simon, c'mon. We wanna read it.

Enter easter and she's dressed in yellow yolk

/---------------------------Joshua Hall-Bachner---------------------------\
|   |
|"We all have our idiosyncracies -- maybe thinning hair, or gum disease." |
\---- Kowanko, "Will You Come To?" ------ Thank You, And Goodnight. ------/


End of Chalkhills Digest #3-69

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