Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #3-7

          Chalkhills Digest, Volume 3, Number 7

                  Monday, 7 October 1996

Today's Topics:

                       Videos, etc.
               Where To Get "Let's Kiosk!"
                      Re: Transmodal
                     XTC Vs. Adam Ant
                 Re: Desert Island Survey
                    Copyright control
                       Fossil Fuel
       The mind is weak, but the flesh is.....weak
                    My So-Called Post
                    Andy J Partridge?
                SemiSonic Thread Continues
       How many people can *you* mind-fuck at once?
           Re: XTC vs. They Might Be Adam Ants
                 censors working overtime
                oh, my head is spinning...
               Coca-Cola in Britain. And FF
                       A Quick One
     Sugarplastic-- not *every* XTC fan loves them...
 If I Put In The Title What It's About You Won't Read It!
                  A little off-topic...
                   Skylarking Gold Disc
                       Various bits
                Re: A Paul Fox Production
               Replies to Random Ephemerea
              Take The Pepsi Taste Challenge
              The Sugarplastic at Spaceland
  Welcome to the Garden of Earthly English Instructors!


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The views expressed herein are those of the individual authors.

So you're saying that we're going to be three.


From: Ben Gott <>
Subject: Videos, etc.
Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 3 Oct 1996 13:55:46 -0400 (EDT)

Hi, Chalkies:

Do any of you have a really really really clean copy of
the "Dear God" video, or the "Peter Pumpkinhead" video?
Increda-chalkhillian Chuck Bisson sent me his collection,
but I'd love some crisp versions of these videos. I could
send could send tapes and I'd dub 'em...I
could send $$...Let me know.

I just received my copy of "Fossil Fuels." It has no
stickers on it; the case is in mint condition; I love the
sound quality! Yay! It cost as much as a small airliner!


P.S. Speaking of videos...If you're still out there,
Erik, could you drop me a line...What's the time frame on
my receiving the "Anderson compilation"? Thanks.


Subject: Where To Get "Let's Kiosk!"
From: (Wesley H. Wilson)
Message-Id: <>
Date: Thu, 3 Oct 96 14:11:10 -0400

Does anyone know where I can get a new copy of Martin Newell's CD, "Let's
Kiosk"? E-mail me, please. Speaking of him, should I get "Back from the
Cleaners"? I already have "Golden Cleaners" (a classic, to be sure!) and
"Brotherhood of Lizards."

Just picked up The Sugarplastic's "Radio Jejune" (their first album). Fast
becoming a favorite of mine, whereas their most recent CD got on my nerves
rather quickly.

Averaging about 35 minutes per album, Sugarplastic's third release should be
coming along shortly. ;-)


P.S. Coincidence? The Dukes, a retro-60's hippie band, speak of an atom
bomb at the end of one of their album sides. The Moody Blues, a genuine
60's hippie band, have a song called "Dear Diary," which fades out with the
line, "an atom bomb exploded today...but it wasn't on anyone I know..."


Date: Thu, 3 Oct 1996 11:28:43 -0700 (PDT)
Message-Id: <v01540b08ae7950f116b1@[]>
From: (E.B.)
Subject: Re: Transmodal

>From: (Andrew Notarian)
>And I must confess I've only been skimming the issues, but I will
>add my 2 pfennigs about the Sugarplastic..  I like them.  I hear
>one song and always think of what I believe are the bonus tracks
>on Mummer.  I also hear similarities to TMBG.  And is that
>Transmodal whatever operator song a computer program? :)

I talked to the Sugarplastic's Ben Eshbach about this. He said it's related
to modal logic, which he defined as a specialized branch of symbolic logic
concerned with possibilities. And to think that people call these guys
nerds!  ;)

Seeing the Sugarplastic play TONIGHT (along with the Loud Family),


Date: Thu, 3 Oct 1996 14:35:15 -0400 (EDT)
From: "Mike Rose, from Totonot" <>
Subject: XTC Vs. Adam Ant
Message-ID: <>

	Derek Miner wrote:

>Just thought I'd drop in a quick note since I saw a *mention* of the new
>They Might Be Giants song "XTC vs. Adam Ant", but nobody had heard it...

>The new song doesn't really take a side. The lyrics go pretty much like:

>XTC vs. Adam Ant
>Content vs. fun
>Fighting for a place in rock and roll
>There is no right or wrong

	Isn't it "Content vs. form?" They also used to perform it with the
line "content over form" but that was, I guess, too much of a pro-XTC

>XTC vs. Adam Ant
>I can't tell you why
>(Couldn't make out the next two lines)

	It's "Even the singer from Bow Wow Wow
	      can't make up her mind."

	I always thought it was cool, and still do, that TMBG wrote a song
about XTC.



Message-Id: <v01540b04ae79c0c3806a@[]>
Date: Thu, 3 Oct 1996 14:14:35 -0500
From: (Dennis McGuire)
Subject: Re: Desert Island Survey

Not a single vote for Radios in Motion?  Yikes!


* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Dennis R. McGuire
Ryerson and Burnham Libraries
Art Institute of Chicago
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


Date: Thu, 3 Oct 1996 14:34:06 -0500
Message-Id: <v01530503ae797c4f5fd5@[]>
From: (John Yuelkenbeck)
Subject: Copyright control

Regarding the c-c-c-cola wars: I am far from a legal expert, but I believe
that British laws are far more strict than American when it comes to
mentioning trademark corporation names in songs. I think it might refer to
broadcasting regulations, or possibly music publishing rules. I believe the
Kinks got in some hot water for mentioning Coca Cola in "Lola." The printed
lyrics always said "Cherry Cola." Stateside, I remember Paul Simon's song
"KodachromeR" always having a Registered mark tagged on and a tradename
disclaimer on the record label.

Perhaps these laws changed by the time of "Sony Entertainment Centers"
popping up on Respectable Street. Any of you Randy Scouse Gits have more of
an inside tract on this issue?


Message-Id: <>
Date: Thu, 3 Oct 96 15:32 EDT
From: (Curtis Rellinger)
Subject: Fossil Fuel

Hello Chalkhillbillies,

I have been biting my tongue reading about everyone
complaining about the cost of the Fossil Fuel CD.
Here in Detroit,Michigan I just forked out $41.00
for the limited edition version!! I had no problem
paying that much as I feel it was worth it!!

Curtis Rellinger

"The insect headed workers wife was hanging her clothes
outside on the line...."


Message-Id: <>
Subject: The mind is weak, but the flesh is.....weak
Date: Thu, 3 Oct 96 15:17:02 -0500
From: Constantine Pappas <>

I wasn't going to buy it.  What's more, I was determined not to.
I have all the CD's. I have Waxworks. I have the singles collection.
Why would I need another compilation with not a single new track?
I wasn't going to buy it.  What's more, I was resigned to the fact
that I never would even see one, being from Milwaukee.  I had to
go to the CD store to buy Tori Amos' 'Little Earthquakes', and
I promised myself I'd leave.  Well, I have this thing about buying
CD's in twos.
I wasn't going to buy it, but I checked the shelf just in case...
It was there, and if you asked me how much more black it could
possibly be, I'd answer 'none more black'.
I wasn't going to buy it.  But I did, and the sound quality is great.

Ok, so I spammed a bit. Sorry, anyhow, please to dance round for
the one called the Mitch-Man! Great news! I agree with whoever posted
asking for a clean version of Young Cleopatra...that's a great song!
I wouldn't mind a less fuzzy version of Haunted Heart either, come
to think of it, not that it isn't a gem on its own.

I was thrilled to see that 5 other ppl chose Beating of Hearts for
their Desert Island List. I hear something new and interesting every
time I play it.

Final question: Any sightings of a FF Video Collection or related news?

|   Constantine Pappas                     

| ...a heart without love is a song with no words,     --Andy Partridge  |
|   ...and a tune to which no one is listening                           |


Date: Thu, 3 Oct 1996 13:24:32 -0700
From: relph (John Relph)
Message-Id: <>
Subject: My So-Called Post

Petrified Paul from the land of Oz <> asks:
>1) Is the mix of "Wait To Your Boat Goes Down" any different to that of the
>version which appears on The Compact XTC?

Yes.  Most of the synthesizer bridge/solo section is edited out on the
version on _Fossil Fuel_, while the full-length version appears on
_The Compact XTC_.

>2) Is the version of "This Is Pop" the single version (produced by RJ Lange)

It's the version from the _This is Pop?_ single, which I guess is
produced by R.J. Lange.

>3) Is the version of "Sgt Rock" the mangled single edit or the Black Sea

The mangled single edit it is.

David Goody <> asks:
>By the way, does anyone actually use Andy's answerphone message from
>"The Bull With The Golden Guts" on their answerphone? What sort of
>comments has it brought?

I use it on my answering machine at home.  Most people really like it!
I know I do.

Jeff <> writes:
>Whenever I reach for Testimonial Dinner, it's always to hear "The Man
>Who...", (which several others on this list have already praised), or my
>other favorite, "Another Satellite".  The reason I'm writing is because I
>haven't heard anyone else mention this track as being among their favorites
>on the TD album.  The P. Hux version is dramatic, energetic, and inventive,
>yet still true-to-form.  (No, I don't write for a fashion magazine!)
>Does anyone know anything further about P. Hux?  I've checked some major
>record stores and about all I've found out is that their full name is
>Parthenon Huxley

Actually, Parthenon Huxley, as has been pointed out, is the lead
singer, guitarist, and songwriter for the band P. Hux.  P. Hux have
one record out, entitled _"Deluxe"_.  It's a good hard-edged pop
record.  Mr Huxley has also worked as producer with "E", whose album
_A Man Called (E)_ is quite excellent.  His second album, _Broken Toy
Shop_, is a little darker and harder to appreciate (for me).  (By the
way, E has a new band called The Eels.  They've released a new album
_Beautiful Freak_, and the single "Novocaine For The Soul" has been
getting airplay.  But Mr Huxley is not involved with The Eels' work.)
Parthenon Huxley also has an earlier solo album (prior to the
formation of P. Hux) from 1988, entitled _Sunny Nights_.  Latest
rumour is that the album should be rereleased on CD in the near future.

Tim Schreyer <> wrote:
>I think the lure of the match image is more along the
>lines of burning and explosion than just flames.
>The match is a potent little package which when lit
>burns sharply and quickly, only once and no stopping it.

Here's the picture.  The _Fossil Fuel_ cover depicts our friend
ammonite on a black background.  The black background is in fact,
black, like coal or oil.  Fossil fuel.  It only takes one match to
create heat and light from what was dark.  It only takes one band to
bring light and heat to a dark world of boring music.

The _Fossil Fuel_ album is an exercise in musical archaeology.  Did
down deep enough and you're bound to find some worthwhile fossils.
Yeah, in this case, it's those old fossils XTC. (Mitch Friedman)
>Now it's my turn to strongly
>suggest a disc for your collections . . .
>K. McCarty 'Dead Dog's Eyeball' - Songs of Daniel Johnston

I strongly second this motion.  An excellent disc, it spent lots of
time in my player after it came out.  I really like the second Glass
Eye album _Bent By Nature_, as well.  Check it out.

"Peter Fitzpatrick" <> asks:
>Subject: The Little Express . . .
>Can anyone put me in touch with these people on the 'net ?

No.  They operate only through postal mail.  Don't forget to include a
couple of International Postal Reply Coupons if you are mailing from
anywhere other than Canada or the USA.

"Jeff Smelser" <> asks:
>By the way,  I heard a version of Peter Pumpkinhead off digital
>satellite that had a girl singer.

Crash Test Dummies, from the _Dumb & Dumber_ soundtrack.

And a final note to Andy: YES, definitely record "Gangway Electric
Guitar" in full glorious studio sound!  YES YES YES!

	-- John


Date: Thu, 3 Oct 1996 14:15:49 -0700 (PDT)
Message-Id: <v01540b06ae797b005a76@[]>
From: (E.B.)
Subject: Andy J Partridge?

Has anyone else noticed a newsgroup called Is
this OUR Andy? And if so, how come there are NEVER any posts in it?



Message-Id: <>
Date: Thu, 03 Oct 1996 18:20:27 -0400
From: jes <>
Subject: SemiSonic Thread Continues

I would also like to endorse Trip Shakespeare and SemiSonic as an excellent
departure for those of us who can't get enough XTC in our lives.  Trip
Shakespeare was one of those rare bands that I would NEVER miss seeing when
the came through town.  I had the pleasure of witnessing several of their
always excellent concerts.  They were unusual in many respects.... the most
striking was their beautiful female percussionist Elaine Harris who played a
modified kit while standing up.  (She used her right hand to handle the bass
drum/snare tandem, while percussing the cymbals with her left.  Not only
that, but she was drop-dead gorgeous.  WHERE IS SHE NOW?  I hear she's
teaching percussion in Minnesota.  PLEASE TELL HER I LOVE HER!!!  (ahem.
sorry.  got carried away there for a second.))  Fronted by two guitarist
brothers (Dan & Matt Wilson) and a fretless bass player (John Munson), they
showcased incredible vocals and absurd lyrics about such topics as having
your car repossessed, toolmasters of Brainerd, and an ode to all of the
bachelorettes of our world.  The showstopper, though, was their insane song
"The Slacks" which featured a dance designed to bring the princess into a
watery trance.  "Across The Universe" (produced by Fred Maher, another good
candidate for the XTC slot) on A&M (sometimes a good label, another good
choice for our lads?) is Desert Island material.   If you are rummaging in
the cut-out bins of a shop that features vinyl, look for a 12" single which
has a live B-side of "Toolmaster Of Brainerd," displaying how the band could
stretch out with humor and invention.  I'm not as familiar with SemiSonic
although I plan to catch their live show in Atlanta soon.

We now return you to our regularly scheduled XTC.


Date: Thu, 3 Oct 1996 21:59:29 -0400 (EDT)
Message-Id: <>
From: Joshua Hall-Bachner <>
Subject: How many people can *you* mind-fuck at once?

>This may end up sounding like a flame but I took a bit of offense at AMANDA
>OWENS using the phrase "How many people can you mind-f*** at once?"


To address your points:

>1.  Where on earth is this "quote" found?

I'm wondering the same thing...but that doesn't mean Andy didn't say it.
Anyone who hasn't heard the "drunken jam sessions" probably wouldn't
imagine Andy saying, "C'mon, you fucking assholes, get a move on..."

>2.  What possible context could it have in this newsgroup and what did it
>have to do with her message other than to give her and all of the other
>Beavis' and Buttheads something to snicker about?

It's said by Andy. It's funny. I think it was perfectly apropriate. It
wasn't just a gratuitous use there. The statement was (IMHO) innately
humorous and gave me a good chuckle when I first read it.

>3.   We find ourselves, as a group who trades ideas on the Internet, to be
>in a precarious position of wishing to protect our freedom to do so, and
>messages like this only give ammunition to those who would like to shut down
>our freedom.

So basically, your point is that, instead of having other people tell us
that we can't use "profanity" or discuss certain things, we should not do
those things and impose censorship on ourselves? That's silly. The people
trying to censor the Internet are 100% wrong according to the Bill of Rights
and the Supreme Court has set precedent by rejecting the Communications
Decency Act. They're not going to be back for a while now. If someone is
about to say something that's just gratuitous, they should think first. But
merely using words like "shit," "fuck"...what's wrong with that? People do
it all the time. It's part of the language. The concepts behind them may not
be "pleasant", but neither are those behind "murder," "rape," "butcher,"
"disease"...I think people should think before they post, but there is
absolutely nothing wrong with those words. Unless they're just used
gratuitously, I see absolutely no problem with their use.

>Hello folks! Let me publicly say that we are LUCKY. Mitch's Andy updates
>make this list a thrill to receive. Not many lists can say they're this
>close to the artist. I'm still amazed.

We must be the luckiest darn group of music fans right now...actually,
though, TMBG are doing a similar thing right now...Wooo-hooo! Re-recordings
of unreleased demos from two of my favorite bands! I wish every band would
do something as immensely awesome as this.

>Lasty, can anyone post a listing of all the Geffen CDs and their retail
>price? I want to order some of the budget-priced CDs but I'm not sure
>which ones are which...

I'll post it just because it's short. The Big Express and everything later
lists for $5.99. Everything before that doesn't.

>All of the songs on your list would sound terrific if performed in a studio
>and recorded with or even without overdubs, and I am sure you will hear
>about everyone's favorites until it will include all of their old material.
>( Like Young Cleopatra, for example, hint hint).

The sad thing is that XTC *did* do a full-band version of Young Cleopatra
already (only found on the Demos 7 bootleg) and it's not really that good.
It's way too fast. Maybe they'll do *another* one. Yeah, that would be
cool.  :) YC is better than many of the songs that actually made it onto
Murmur, IMHO. The others that I'd really like to see are It Didn't Hurt A
Bit, Ra Ra For Red Rockinghorse, Blue Beret, and of course Rip Van Ruben
(yes, I know they already officially released the demo, but, hey, it worked
for The Good Things...)

>Oh yeah! Two bits of info I forgot to mention . . . He also wanted to do
>"Goosey Goosey" for the bootleg thing

Woo-hoo! Great song.

>and Dave has a drummer friend who
>lives in Salisbury, England who wants to play on the album. I believe Andy
>mentioned that they could record the drums first and then possibly finish
>the songs in his shed. Very low budget!

Don't care. Considering how good Andy's "shack demos" (Prince of Orange
etc.) sound, I'm sure the full-band "shack sessions" would sound even better.

>Just a quick post to report on comments by Andy on a London radio station
>this evening.  When asked the usual question about touring, Andy said that
>he had been speaking to Colin about an urge he has to set up with the band
>and play live from the back of a lorry outside radio stations, and then just
>move on when they'd had enough.  By the sound of it, it is something that
>has been talked about recently.  I taped the interview and intend to
>transcribe it somewhere or other in the near future.

To tell the truth, I'm not in favor of this idea. Why? In the past fourteen
years, XTC have become *awful* live. I mean *horrible*. Anyone who's heard
the 1991 "Live from Andy's shed" show knows what I mean -- the band couldn't
play in time with each other, about half of the songs just fell apart in the
middle, and the playing was just bad. I'm sorry, but they need to go into
training for a while before they hit the road again.

Last thing (for those of you who actually read this far...) Does anyone else
think that the Czar Mix of King For A Day is actually better than the album
version? I think they should have switched them. The instrumentation, the
drums, everything has so much more...texture. The Tears For Fears influence
is much more subdued. Anyway, just a thought.

Josh, he likes to speak and he loves to be spoken to

/---------------------------Joshua Hall-Bachner---------------------------\
|   |
| "The few surviving samurai survey the battlefield. They count the arms, |
\--the legs, the heads, and then divide by five." - They Might Be Giants--/


Date: Fri, 4 Oct 1996 15:45:31 +1200 (NZST)
Message-Id: <v01540b03ae7ae23c61dc@[]>
From: (James Dignan)
Subject: Re: XTC vs. They Might Be Adam Ants

>Just thought I'd drop in a quick note since I saw a *mention* of the new
>They Might Be Giants song "XTC vs. Adam Ant", but nobody had heard it...

just in case any of you are wondering about the story behind this song, I
could make a fair stab at it... according to Twomey's remarkable book
"Chalkhills and Children", XTC never got to no. 1 in the British charts.
Their highest placing was number 2, due to the return to number one of the
song Ant Music, which had previously been slowly drifting down the top 5.
(I *think* the XTC song in question was Senses WO)



Date: Fri, 4 Oct 1996 10:15:40 +0100 (BST)
Message-Id: <v01510100ae7a89a01a23@[]>
From: (Mark Fisher)
Subject: censors working overtime

>From: jes <>

>This may end up sounding like a flame but I took a bit of offense at AMANDA
>OWENS using the phrase "How many people can you mind-f*** at once?",
>3.   We find ourselves, as a group who trades ideas on the Internet, to be
>in a precarious position of wishing to protect our freedom to do so, and
>messages like this only give ammunition to those who would like to shut down
>our freedom.

I once came across this argument on another newsgroup and I find it deeply

The implication is that instead of being censored by someone else, we
should do the censoring ourselves. By the same logic, homosexuals should
act less gay for fear of angering homophobics; black people should bleach
their skin so as not to upset white racists; and the disabled should stay
indoors for fear of alarming the able-bodied.

"Oh, but I was only talking about swearing," will no doubt be Jes's
defense. But what exactly is it about a combination of four letters that so

>As for the issue regarding Colin singing the words 'c-c-c-cola' as opposed
>to endorsing the famous Atlanta product, allow me to express my ignorance
>and ask.... aren't the British fond of drinking Pepsi, without ice?
>Wouldn't that make the idea of drinking a "coca-cola" somewhat unlikely?

We don't mind which multinational capitalist chooses to drown us in its
wares. As I understand it, Coca Cola is drunk in vast quantities in every
country in the world apart from India, where they're sensible enough to say
that it can't be sold unless the recipe is first declared. But that would
be telling.

Back to XTC.

The latest issue of Q selects Fossil Fuel as one of its nine albums of the

And in an odd back-handed compliment (kind of), David Quantick says in a
review of *Various Artists: The Number One Punk Album*: "The second irony
is that recently bands like Magazine and Wire and Buzzcocks, who struggled
and failed at the time, are now not so much hailed by feebler Britpop
imitators as ripped off senseless while said acts breeze chirpily into the
charts despite sounding like XTC with the trots."

He doesn't say whether XTC are actually included on the album (though being
a legendary gob-spitting punk band, they surely are...)

- Mark Fisher


Date: Fri, 04 Oct 1996 06:57:34 -0500 (EST)
From: Brookes McKenzie <>
Subject: oh, my head is spinning...
Message-id: <01IA8HSTCS8IBV1IFE@SMITH>

...from the amazing news in Mitch's Partridge report!! and i thought that
old Paul Bailey's post was unbelievable - good Godfrey. actually i still
can't believe that's true - Andy, who won't do email, on an interactive
game show?! sounds highly suspicious to me. as well as smelling a wee bit
of crass marketing. not to cast aspersions on anyone (does anyone from
Mr. Bailey's camp actually read chalkhills?), but still.

well, anyway, re: "The Green Man" - i wonder if Andy's read Anne Rice's
_The Vampire Lestat_ (which is admittedly a little ridiculous, not to
mention rather florid but which i actually like and think is ten times
better-written and overall more worthwhile than all the rest of her books
put together) which goes into the Celtic and sort of druid rituals about
the gods of the forest, interpreting the myth of the spirit of the tree
in an interestingly literal/historical way. i don't know how much of it
is historically accurate, but it's a neat theory nonetheless.

also, funnily enough, i seem to have some kind of idea in my head that the
movie of "The Green Man" (which i've seen) was based on something that
P.G. Wodehouse wrote. oh, wait, i take that back - i think it was Kingsley
Amis. i get my Brit society novelists confused. well anyway, Mark - & by
the way, you're welcome for everything i seem to be doing for you lately
:) - i _love_ P.G. Wodehouse and am slowly working my way through
everything he's ever written. my favorite so far is _Something New_
(aka _Something Fresh_), but i've yet to meet a Plum i didn't like -
they're all just so tasty and delightful.

thanks, Mitch, for the lyric correx as we would _never_ have figured
some of those out!

oh, does Jamie Block actually have any product (read: album, cd, 8-track,
what-have-you) out? i've been trying to find him at various record chains
and drawing a blank. they didn't even have him on their computers which
would mean that it's not just their colossal ignorance, or so i would

	(still sighing in bliss over the prospect of "the bootleg

			- brookes

"All of the drugs she does scare me real good
 She's got a tattoo and two pet snakes"

	- Rivers Cuomo (Weezer)


From: Damian Foulger <>
Date: Fri, 4 Oct 1996 10:14:49 GMT
Subject: Coca-Cola in Britain. And FF
Message-ID: <>

> As for the issue regarding Colin singing the words 'c-c-c-cola' as
> opposed to endorsing the famous Atlanta product, allow me to express
> my ignorance and ask.... aren't the British fond of drinking Pepsi,
> without ice?  Wouldn't that make the idea of drinking a "coca-cola"
> somewhat unlikely?

Excuse me!!!!?  Talking as someone who has been immersed in British
culture for 25 years, I'd just like to say that Coca-Cola is as
popular in Britain as Pepsi-Cola.  Like, all Americans live of a diet
of pure McDonalds and Taco-Bell, drive cars the size of buses and
carry fully-automatic hand-guns for use in the event that they get
road-rage!  Pepsi and Coca-Cola are foul anyway.  As to drinking them
without ice, has anyone every tried drinking warm, flat versions?  It
makes you realise that if you can actually taste the drinks they are
slightly less pleasant than a dirty-sock milkshake!  A similar effect
can be seen with Lager/American 'beer'.

Apologies for the ranting, but we are all so horribly screwed up by
the portrayal of countries, cultures and people by our media.  We
should _all_ take it with a fuck-off (oh, no the F word - Chalkhills
will get closed down!) large mountain of salt.  Monty-Python and Ab-
Fab are not accurate representations of British society.

>SIGH!<  Thanks I feel better now.

From: "McDonnell, Dan E." <>
> make the purchase.  Even though it was the limited edition version, the
> price was $35.99.  Now I'm just as hungry for new XTC as the next fan, but I

This makes me very sad.  In Britain the limited edition is stlg18.  That
makes it about $25.  Thus, if anyone, especially DAN, want's me to
purchase one here and pack it off to anywhere, please let me know.
I'm just about willing to do it for anyone/anywhere.  Postage &
packing will raise the price to about $28-$30, but still cheaper than

Dames tWd

(Life is good in the greenhouse:XTC)
"I am quite happy to wear cotton
 without knowing how it works" - Black Adder


Message-ID: <>
Date: Fri, 4 Oct 96 08:49:00 -0500
From: dgershmn <>
Organization: AMS
Subject: A Quick One

Does anyone know how many vinyl copies
of "Skylarking" were printed up with
"Mermaid Smiled" before "Dear God" was



Message-Id: <>
Date: Fri, 04 Oct 1996 11:56:19 -0400
From: Tobin Munsat <>
Subject: Sugarplastic-- not *every* XTC fan loves them...

Though I don't especially like posting negative comments about a band, I
think that I should let people know that not *everyone* on this list likes
the new Sugarplastic album.  I got the disk last night and I've listened to
it a couple of times, and it just doesn't do anything for me.  In fact, if
you're looking for a copy of this album but you're having a hard time
finding it at your local record shop, e-mail me and I'll send you mine.


Date: Fri, 4 Oct 1996 12:59:52 -0400 (EDT)
Message-Id: <>
Subject: If I Put In The Title What It's About You Won't Read It!

Shit, I thought I was going to be able to keep out of this but a few pints
of whatever during lunch has got me to posting level.

Don't anybody dare fast forward over this...ready...demos!

Yeah, yeah, discussed to death already, I know, but we are pretty much
the *ultimate* democracy.  By that I mean absolutely *everyone* gets to
say their turn!

I don't know AP personally, I have no idea how his brain works...apart from
the obvious genius rating in the musical field.

These demo songs have got out, by fair means or foul.  AP is reportedly not
happy.  Is this not similar to a government official writing a *private*
and *internal* memo only for some little sneak to let it out to the press
for a few quid?

Don't get the strops with us innocent citizens for making use of this
lovely little gem, not that I have yet.  Have a word with the Mole From The


PS: My only gripe with Fossil Fuel is the lack of continuity on Virgin's part.
(1) Missing Earn Enough when Love At First Sight is there, (2) Single mixes
of Ten Feet, Senses, Boat... but not of Love At First Sight.  Come on, let's
have some consistency!


Message-Id: <>
Date: Fri, 04 Oct 1996 13:04:54 EDT
From: "Todd Bernhardt" <>
Subject: A little off-topic...

But not too much. Actually, this is about Aimee Mann -- as usual, I received
an excellent recommendation from this list and picked up "I'm with Stupid."
Great album. It grows more on me each day (AAH! GET IT OFF!) Um, sorry. No
really, it's very hummable pop with intelligent lyrics, and I'm wondering
what of her other stuff I should pick up. Could fans in the know please let
me know privately at the address above? Thanks.

Ob. XTC ref: Now that I know and like the album so much, it's esp. painful
knowing that I missed a chance to see Dave play with her when she toured
here supporting the album (I didn't know he was playing with her until after
the fact). It would have been great to hear him rip some leads on "It's All
Over Now," or something else. (One thing, though -- I wonder how he felt as
her boyfriend touring with her on the "I'm with Stupid" tour?  :^)

Oh, and I can't believe "Great Fire" only got ONE desert-island song vote!!



Message-Id: <>
Date: Fri, 04 Oct 1996 11:31:10 -0700
From: John M Rader <>
Subject: Skylarking Gold Disc

In vol 3 #6 this appeared:

From: Thomas Durkin <>
       --I recently obtained the MFSL gold disc of _Skylarking_ .  This
	may be old news, but is anyone else among the disappointed at how
	similar it sounds to the conventional version?  MFSL usually
	makes its gold discsworth your while (Floyd's _Wall_, Joe
	Jackson's _Night & Day_, just to name
	a couple); XTC just wasn't incredibly altered.  Is this because
	a)_Skylarking_ is near-perfect already, or b) are we to blame
	MFSL?  Needless to say, I prob'ly won't be getting _O&L_ on gold

This is from my post back in chalkhills,  vol2#137

	If MoFi can approach this standard for O&L (they didn't with
	Skylarking), we would really have something special.

	Not really MoFi's fault, they can only work with what's there.

The standard I was referring to was English Settlement, the UK double Lp.

The final product of a MoFi remastering is the best version obtainable from
a Master Tape.  The Gold Disc in the case of Skylarking is better in some
areas than the original, however I didn't trade my UK Skylarking CD from
Virgin in.  There is a more cohesive mix on this version, whereas the MoFi
has better separation, highs, lows etc.  The big bass drum on Sacrificial
Bonfire is a prime example.

The fault for not as dramatic an improvement as compared to the REM
Murmur GoldDisc, vs. the IRS CD?
Todd the non-technical producer.  He made them play
together(cohesiveness) at the expense of clarity and transparency.



Date: Sat, 5 Oct 1996 19:58:40 -0500
Message-ID: <>
Subject: Various bits

In response to Dave Gershman's <> awesome Desert
Island poll [which I forgot to participate in]:

 #> 14. Psonic Psunspot                 0.9
 #> 15. Chips from the Choc. Fireball   0.7
 #> 19. 25 O'Clock                      0.33

I dare say the reason these albums came so low on the Desert Island
Quotient (TM) is people assumed the Dukes stuff wasn't applicable.
Maybe I'm wrong, but I think the Dukes would have rated _much_ more
highly on a poll that included everything.

I'm not knocking your poll in any way [having done one myself, I
know what it's like to do a poll of this size :)], just making a
passing comment on nuisance variables, and lamenting the fact that
my favourite XTC album [Chips] didn't make it.  :)

Simon Knight <> writ:

 #> They Might Be Giants - John Henry
 #> A lot of TMBG fans disliked this album as it's a more
 #> "straight-ahead" rock album, but it's hardly Bon Jovi!

This is my favourite TMBG album by miles.  And I've been a devoted
fan for six years.  The melodies on John Henry blow anything else
they've ever done out of the water.  There isn't the novelty value
of their old accordion jingles, but I'd forsake novelty for beauty
any day.

Oh, huge thanks to Derek Miner for posting the lyrics to 'XTC vs
Adam Ant'.  Your place in heaven is reserved.  Back to Simon K....

 #> "Some nonsuch net holds me aloft" - Chalkhills and Children
 #> In this song he thinks the net is "nonexistent".  On the release
 #> of "Nonsuch" he found out the word actually means "unrivalled".

Maybe the net is so high/sublime/whatever that it's either [a]
holding him _really_ aloft, or [b] too high to hold him aloft.  I
don't know, just a thought... anyway...

 #> On the actual cassette the song is labelled:  "The Dissapointed".
 #> Is that how they spell that in their dictionary?

Dunno, but that's how they spelled it on my CD single copy [VSCDT
1404].  However, they _did_ get it right on the CD single with
bonus tracks that got released here [VOZCD 142].

The Dissapointed [sic] was the first ever XTC thingy I ever ever
had.  Ever.  And as of today I'm up to 47!  Blimey...

 #> Does anyone know if Fossil Fuels is going to be released in
 #> Australia?

Apparently it is, but not for a while.  December I think, and it
won't be the funky cover either.  That does it, I think we should
move to have Australia placed in the gap between Norway and Iceland
so we actually get stuff.

Wes Wilson <> dun written:

 #> I'm selling two items:
 #> 1. "Love on a Farmboy's Wages" (UK 12-inch "wallet" single)
 #> 2. "Towers of London" 2-pack, sleeve, 7-inch UK

As coincidence would have it, I bought 1. yesterday and 2. today.
After listening to the live tracks I suggest you Chalkies buy it
from Wes before someone else does.  :)


On the music box: Adrian Belew, 'Young Lions'


Message-Id: <v01540b00ae7db7dce1cc@[]>
Date: Sun, 6 Oct 1996 15:42:58 -0400
From: (Derek Miner)
Subject: Re: A Paul Fox Production

In the Chalkhills Digest #3-6 Simon Knight wrote:

>>I'm curious to hear more from this guy.  Anybody else stumbled across any
>>Paul Fox productions they liked?

>They Might Be Giants - John Henry
>A lot of TMBG fans disliked this album as it's a more
>"straight-ahead" rock album, but it's hardly Bon Jovi!
>(Their previous album Apollo 18 was mixed by Langer and Winstanley

I think TMBG is headed for that point where fans get divided into camps,
much like XTC. Whereas some fans prefer "White Music" XTC, others like the
"Skylarking" XTC. They Might Be Giants have been getting a lot of criticism
>from "fans" since "John Henry" over the new full band. Even though their
new disc, "Factory Showroom" is still two days away from the stores, some
people have already pronounced it a failure. Too bad, because, like XTC, I
still believe TMBG are an important, creative and inventive band. "John
Henry" had a consistency that I think TMBG have only bettered on "Lincoln"
and "Flood". Well, if the history of XTC proves to be a valid marker, then
They Might Be Giants should be able to succeed in new ways, attracting new
fans while some fall away, but still keeping a core constituency (of which
I am a part, for both bands) that can temper the weak material and still
see the same creativity no matter if it's MIDI, orchestral, metal, pop or
what-have-you. (Is that a run-on sentence?)

Now back to that Paul Fox thread...

I also liked a rather obscure Fox-produced album called "Cereal Killers" by
Too Much Joy. I was just shocked to discover the disc was out of print. The
band is still around though, making the same snot-nosed loud power pop.
"Cereal Killers" tempered the brattiness of the band with some pretty
melodic music, however. I have a hunch this was largely due to Fox, since
the band's other three discs have been a bit more "harsh" musically. I
don't know if this is really for XTC fans, but I'm willing to bet I'm not
the only one who has a Too Much Joy disc!

= Derek Miner =


Message-Id: <v01540b06ae7dbfd1c06b@[]>
Date: Sun, 6 Oct 1996 16:14:10 -0400
From: (Derek Miner)
Subject: Replies to Random Ephemerea

In digest #3-6, Thomas Durkin wrote:

>        --I recently obtained the MFSL gold disc of _Skylarking_ .  This
>may be old news, but is anyone else among the disappointed at how similar
>it sounds to the conventional version?  MFSL usually makes its gold discs
>worth your while (Floyd's _Wall_, Joe Jackson's _Night & Day_, just to name
>a couple); XTC just wasn't incredibly altered.  Is this because a)
>_Skylarking_ is near-perfect already, or b) are we to blame MFSL?  Needless
>to say, I prob'ly won't be getting _O&L_ on gold disc...

I was disappointed as well. They could have at least included "Mermaid
Smiled" and "Extrovert", or if they got really industrious, the b-side

From what I understand, however, MFSL's gold discs are licensed from the
record companies (Geffen in this case), and record company restrictions
keep them from doing anything really radical in some cases. On the other
hand, many have complained about the "compressed" sound and Todd's
production of the album in the first place, which means it probably
wouldn't lend itself to remastering very well.

>        --I had the chance to see Sugarplastic on the Loud Family concert
>here in Chgo, and of course noted the _Drums & Wires_ sound.  It mmade me
>curious to know what Chalkies think of these other fine examples of
>XTC-influenced artists:
>        ++Spookey Ruben
>        ++The Lovely Lads

I wish Sugarplastic was coming to Florida! I did pick up that Spookey Ruben
CD though. Very unusual. What are the Lovely Lads like? I think I scanned
over some mentions of them here before, so if anyone wants to e-mail me
details, please do.

>        --Finally, does anyone know of a website where I can find a JPEG of
>the _Skylarking_ album cover?  I'd love to get it for my wallpaper, but for
>some odd reason, my computer is balking at the GIF of it I captured from
>the Beatown page. Odd...

If anyone wants a graphic that's along those lines, feel free to snag it
from me, at

I can make it into a JPEG if needed. I created it especially to tile for my
web page, and it's been on my Mac's desktop for a long time now!

= Derek Miner =


From: Aaron Pastula <>
Message-Id: <>
Subject: Advert...
Date: Sun, 6 Oct 96 13:22:03 PDT

Greetings --

To anyone interested, the new issue of MOJO magazine with the Beatles
on the cover has a full-page advertisement for Fossil Fuel in it.

Pretty Cool.



Date: Mon, 7 Oct 1996 11:46:51 -0400
Message-Id: <>
Subject: Take The Pepsi Taste Challenge

>As for the issue regarding Colin singing the words 'c-c-c-cola' as opposed
>to endorsing the famous Atlanta product, allow me to express my ignorance
>and ask.... aren't the British fond of drinking Pepsi, without ice?
>Wouldn't that make the idea of drinking a "coca-cola" somewhat unlikely?

Well...I can't speak for the other residents of my nation, however,
personally, I drink both Pepsi and Coke...but only with *lots* of ice and
a *very* large slug of Absolut vodka tucked in there!

Cheers (with glass of above mentioned drink raised in right hand!)


Message-Id: <>
From: "Mark G. Cuevas" <>
Subject: The Sugarplastic at Spaceland
Date: Mon, 7 Oct 1996 10:23:50 -0700

Dear Chalkophiles:

I am pleased to report that The Sugarplastic put on an *outstanding* show
at Spaceland (Silverlake, CA) on 10/3/96.  Josh's drums were rock solid and
punchy; Kiara's bass lines were melodic and clever; and Ben's rhythm guitar
lines were extremely well-crafted.  Despite the lack of background vocals
(Ben is the only vocalist), he carried the tunes masterfully.  The audience
was truly pumped for them (and only them). [More on that later].

As fellow Chalker Dino De Angelis stated in Chalkhills a few issues ago,
these guys are very approachable and downright friendly.  Bearing that in
mind, I first approached Ben (the leader of the outfit) and we ended up
talking for quite awhile. [BTW, Ben remembered Dino from the Brownies gig
in NYC.  He remembered Dino's chemistry background and that Dino's wife was
also there].  I told Ben that there had been more than a bit of activity
about The Sugarplastic on Chalkhills.  He seemed pleasantly suprised, and
flattered.  He said he doesn't mind the XTC comparisons (since they are
definitely an influence) but that the reasoning usually goes one of two

1.  "Hey Sugarplastic, you sound a lot like XTC.  Godda*n you."


2.  "Hey Sugarplastic, you sound a lot like XTC.  God bless you."

Frankly, I don't think they "sound like XTC."  I think they have a number
of qualities that make them XTC-like (clever songwriting, interesting bass
lines, well-structured songs, etc.) but I think they are still developing
their sound.  Besides, *all* good bands take bits and pieces from other
bands.  And they should.  Look at our boys.  They've admittedly taken bits
and pieces from the Fab Four -- and we love it.  The key is to expand on
the idea -- and that is where the comparison holds.  XTC expand on the
ideas of The Beatles in the same way The Sugarplastic expand on the ideas
of XTC.  God bless them.

As I've mentioned before, the Loud Family played too.  Even though I found
the lead singer's voice interesting, the sound of the group left me flat.
They did seem to have a good core following, but the audience's attention
paled in comparison to that of The Sugarplastic.  I don't mean to put down
the Loud Family, only to say that it's not my type of music.

In talking with Ben and the other members, the San Francisco gig at the
Hotel Utah on 10/5 was pretty much the end of the tour -- for now.  They
plan to rest a bit but don't have any immediate plans.  It was unclear
whether Geffen tells them what to do and when to do it, or just how much
control they really have.  [Sorry Jen, didn't quite get a clear answer on
whether a Michigan tour is imminent].

Last note:  Although Gretchen was there (the female vocalist from Moog who
helped out on "Bang. The Earth is Round"), she didn't perform.  That seemed
to be a bit of a sore point, so I didn't push it.

I'm gonna turn back time until it sounds alright . . .


Date: Mon, 07 Oct 1996 14:29:52 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Welcome to the Garden of Earthly English Instructors!
Message-id: <>

Okay get my English class here at the University of New Orleans,
we just had to write a paper on if we thought a class in critical thinking
should be added to our overloaded curriculum. In my paper I wrote something
about how everyone can't think the same way. When I got my paper back, written
right next to that, was "Can't all think like Chekov". So I went to my
instructor, asked him what he wrote, just to make sure. I told him "That's a
line from one of my favorite songs." and he says "I know."
Man it is so good to know I'm not the only person in New Orleans who knows who
XTC is. By the way, if you're reading this Mr. McCluskey, I revised my paper
just before I got online, so don't worry.

"If I try hard I think that I will see some truth behind all of this
ugly"-CrashTest Dummies.


End of Chalkhills Digest #3-7

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