Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #3-99

          Chalkhills Digest, Volume 3, Number 99

                 Wednesday, 16 April 1997

Today's Topics:

                    the cd is here!!!
               Andy Cole and the Commotions
     Nigel cover. Producing Duffy. Blocked on Block.
                 Mummer, Mark, madness...
                       Re: New Baby
              In loving Mummer-y of an album
        Dewitt Henderson said in Chalkhills 3-98:
                     Spring theatrics
                     jim paints paul
     Chalkhills' Children orders received by 13apr97
                  Tokyo Chalkhills Party
                  completing the circle
                      human alchemy
           No XTC: Swindon, Cathy Dennis, life
    Misheard lyrics and the usual fiddle faddle......


To UNSUBSCRIBE from the Chalkhills mailing list, send a message to
<> with the following command:

        unsubscribe chalkhills

For all other administrative issues, send a message to:


Please remember to send your Chalkhills postings to:


World Wide Web: <>

The views expressed herein are those of the individual authors.

Everything looks smashed and broken.


Message-ID: <6kV7$>
Date: Sun, 13 Apr 1997 18:33:55 +0100
From: Phil Hetherington <>
Subject: Blur

I can't find the quote, but whoever said that Blur's 'Song 2' was
garbage - I say WTF? This is quite simply the *best* song Blur
have *ever* done, and although the new album isn't _quite_ as
good as Modern Life Is Rubbish, it's still a masterpiece. This is
the album which rescues Blur (who were otherwise about to implode),
and Song 2 is far and away the standout track.

So there. Anyway, before this album, Blur basically said that
they were doing this for themselves, and if anyone liked it
that was a bonus. I like that approach - the alternative led
to the half-baked commercial crap on the previous two albums,
neither of which stand up to repeated listening.

You're so great and I love you.

ObXTC: I like Human Alchemy. (The song, not the concept.)
Phil Hetherington


Date: Sun, 13 Apr 1997 19:54:43 -0700
From: becki digregorio <>
Subject: the cd is here!!!
Message-ID: <>

greetings chalkhills folks,

well, the cd is finally here.  as some of you may remember from an earlier
post, i've had the great honor of having dave gregory contribute his
wondrous talents to my new album titled "seven worthies... of the bamboo
grove."  his guitar and keyboard parts were engineered by andy partridge
and recorded in the "infamous shed."  my music might be described as
"psychedelic middle-eastern rock/pop... with an edge" (!).  the other
musicians on the album include john wedemeyer (another huge xtc fan and
fellow subscriber to chalkhills) on guitar, randy hayes on drums, rick
walker on drums and middle-eastern percussion, and don lax on violins.  i
play 12-string and bass.  there are nine originals, as well as
a cover of "open my eyes," a big hit for "the nazz" back in the psychedelic
sixties (this was todd rundgren's first band).  dave's playing is
*incredible* (of course), and his guitar solos simply shred (sorry, it was
the first word that came to mind to describe them!!).

if any xtc (or nazz) fans are interested in getting one (or two, they're
small!) here is the ordering information:

cd's are $13.00 each (u.s. dollars)

plus add the appropriate shipping costs depending on where you are:

europe/united kingdom   $3.00
japan                   $4.00
australia               $4.00
u.s. & canada           $2.00

(these costs are for each cd)
(these rates are for air mail -- and i promise to get them out to you
within two weeks of receiving your money order)
(if you live somewhere other than the countries listed, $4.00 ought to cover

kindly send a money order (or equivalent) in u.s. funds.

i've heard from *many* chalkhills folks directly, and other than kris and
jason (your eddresses were too long for my system, why i don't know), i've
sent you all a separate note.  also, some of you were asking when my
(other!) guitarist john wedemeyer would be playing on his european tour w/
well-known blues cat charlie musselwhite.  last i heard this is his

25 april        mean fiddler -- london
26 april        new morning -- paris
29 april        den hague -- holand
30 april        wuustweze -- belgium (but this is on a wednesday?!)
1 may           oden -- denmark fest
2 may           copenhagen -- denmark fest
3 may           bergen -- norway fest

john is an *incredible* guitar player, and if any of you dig the blues you
might want to check him out.  if you go, tell him you're an xtc fan.  or
better yet, wear one of phil's chalkhills shirts to the show...

thanks to all who've inquired about the cd, and i hope you enjoy the

peace to all,



Date: Mon, 14 Apr 1997 08:16:32 -0400 (EDT)
Message-ID: <>
Subject: Andy Cole and the Commotions

The intial excitement of hearing about a possible Andy P. / Lloyd C.
collaboration has now turned to apprehension.  Don't get me wrong...I have
been a huge fan of both for many years but these collaborations don't
necessarily mean you get the best qualitites of both artists rolled into one.
 You may even end up getting less of what makes each artist appealing.
 Consider any "superstar" groups of years past or even if the Beatles had
gotten back together in the 70's - it might have been scary.  I don't mean to
diminish the potential of what hasn't happened yet or that Andy & Lloyd could
even create some great songs, just trying to lower my expectations....

"...and another thing!!...", he stammered,

stop picking on AMANDA, I think it's pretty cool that someone who is 19 is
into XTC like she is (myself being an ancient 33).  Here is someone who is
"carrying the XTC torch" for her generation".  I remember being maligned by
some of my friends when I was 19 for listening to Black Sea when the others
were listening to REO Speedwagon (and look which band is still around
today!).  It is pretty commendable that she is willing to do the
"tape-trading thing" for fellow fans as well....

thanks for listening...



Date: Mon, 14 Apr 1997 11:29:39 -0700 (PDT)
Message-Id: <>
From: (Dean M)
Subject: Nigel cover. Producing Duffy. Blocked on Block.

1. The new Robbie (Take That) Williams single includes a cover of "Making
Plans For Nigel". The music is quite good but Robbie's vocals
are.....'something I guess you have to hear yourself' [Diplomacy feels

2. Music Week has a note about how Andy is hard at work on the new Duffy cd.

3. Am I missing something on Jamie Block's "Lead Me Not Into Penn Station?"
Is there some sort of multimedia file on the disc? All I find are audio
tracks, about 35 minutes worth. I get the impression from all the computer
lingo on the jacket that there is supposed to be a Quick Time
visual?....[But I know one thing and that's I love you!]

  Dean Martucci    San Mateo, CA USA


Message-Id: <>
From: "Ben Gott" <>
Subject: Mummer, Mark, madness...
Date: Mon, 14 Apr 1997 12:17:02 PDT

Good afternoon, Chalkhillers,

I'll add my tuppence to the "Mummer" praise - one day, I listened to it (on
repeat) for eight hours straight while doing a history paper. I still am
most impressed with "Deliver Us From the Elements" (a wonderfully dark
song), "Jump," the ending of "Gold," and a song I don't think anyone's
mentioned, "Me and the Wind," which is my favourite song from the
album. "Mummer" didn't start out being one of my top five, but it's weaseled
its way in there. Yay.

Mark - yes, the beginning of your first name is my last name, and I know it
means "God" in German. At least it's not a long complicated German name - my
best friend's last name is "Schaufelberger." Yikes.

-Ben (Have I been such a fool?)
* -----------------------------------------------------------
Ben Gott
"We're pointing our wheels to tomorrow..."


Message-Id: <>
Date: Mon, 14 Apr 1997 12:37:27 -0700
From: James McGowan <>
Subject: Re: New Baby

In Chalhills 3-98, Mark <> wrote:

> Chalkheads:
> This is the youngster speaking. I'm fairly new to the list, and I'm
> sixteen. Now I'm curious to know who the oldest list member is.

How long has it been since we've done an age survey?  I recall having
started one myself a few hundred issues back, but my advanced age has dimmed
my memory.

Mark, I'm *39* dude.  Check this out:  I saw XTC in concert before you was
born, son!

Now, where's the Geritol?

- Jim

James McGowan
CMS Corporation
Los Angeles, CA


Date: Mon, 14 Apr 1997 12:37:17 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: In loving Mummer-y of an album
Message-id: <9703148610.AA861046710@FINSMTP1.FIN.GOV.BC.CA>

Joshua Hall-Monitor writes:
>Unfortunately, I have to rank Mummer second-last. It has good moments;
>Beating of Hearts and LoaFW definitely qualify. But it really falls short as
>a whole. Wonderland's bop-bass and cheesy nature effects do nothing to back
>up a rather half-hearted commentary from Colin. The good bits (like the
>bridge) in Human Alchemy even out with the bad bits, like the moaning.
>Ladybird is a good song where the production on the vocal really hurts it
>for me. Really, the album as a whole just seems lacking to me; there's not a
>single song I would consider a standout, and in the process of passing
>through three sets of hands the production was really mangled. Just my
>opinion, of course... hey, I love Nonsuch, so what do I know?

This comment rankled me, but rather than fire off a spur-of-the-moment
reply I thought I'd go home and listen to the album again a few times
to remind myself why I like it so much.  So I did.

And now, a week later, I'm willing to admit the production could have
been better. But crappy production hasn't diminished my ardour for
Mummer (or any other XTC album, for that matter.)

About "Wonderland" ... yes, the bass is cheesy but I don't find it
offensive.  It is, perhaps, the only sound on the album that sounds
dated -- a true '80s relic.  The nature effects are just a precursor
to "Summer's Cauldron" and "Grass"; do they bug (pun intended) you
too?  Please be more precise in your griping about the production of
the vocals on "Ladybird"; I hear nothing offensive.

You rank Mummer second-last ... and I suppose Mummer lacks the
frenetic energy of the first 4 albums, the cohesion of English
Settlement, and the musical and lyrical growth shown in the subsequent
recordings.  I wouldn't be surprised if we see some critics of the
album crawl out of the woodwork decrying Mummer as the least among

But I'm beating around the bush.  I have yet to explain what it is
about Mummer that I find so compelling, and it's here where I differ
most vehemently with Joshua.  I think that the songs on Mummer are, to
the very end, top rank.

Let's start with Side One, shall we?

"Beating of Hearts" sums up what lies ahead ... this single song
defines the rest of the album, and now I think about it, the band's
subsequent career.  Baroque arrangement, off-kilter rhythm, whacky
guitar noises, questioning lyrics ("Do you know what noise awakes you
..." -- is it the sound of the train running low on soul coal or the
Green Man?)  Perfect Andy.

And "Wonderland" is the Perfect Colin Contrast; if you ever need to
summarise the differences between the two writers, these two songs do
the job perfectly.

"Love On A Farmboy's Wages" is one of the best songs Andy has ever
written, bar none.  It's got that pastoral/longing for days of yore
aspect, but it can also be seen as a "why I just want to sit at home
and write songs in the shed" song.  Perhaps Terry recognized that, and
that's why the song signalled his end with the band.

"Great Fire" ... you have to love the Adrian Belew-esque panicing
animal guitar sounds.  The best of Andy's fire/fireworks-as-a-
metaphor-for-love songs.

"Deliver Us From The Elements" is perhaps my favourite song on the
record ... backwards cymbals and backwards guitars (or is it a
synth?), the choir, the way it adds layer upon layer at the end until
the big climax in spite of the fade out.  The best ending to the first
side of a record since Abbey Road.

[The b-sides are a nice bonus, but don't add to the strength of the

Side Two

I've always heard the "moaning" in "Human Alchemy" as the sound of
either the slave owners praying for forgiveness (I can just see them
in hooded hairshirts [not too far removed from Klan robes!] strolling
through the monastery ...) or the slaves themselves packed like
sardines below deck, singing to remind themselves that they are human
in spite of what their owners may think.  A very moving song.

"Ladybird" is just lovely, a sweet love song that I sing to my wife
each spring.

"In Loving Memory of a Name" is the only pop song I know of that deals
with a cemetery with the exception of "Eleanor Rigby", and this one is
up-beat and catchy.  The churchy organ introduction, the bells buried
in the mix, another slippery Colin melody.  Oh yes, the false ending.

The imagery, both musical and lyrical, of "Me and the Wind" is great.
First of all the chorus melody is like a windy day, swirling this way
and that, followed by the "Have I been such a fool ..." section coming
as such a contrast!  And then the lyrics:
  "Me and the wind are pulling kites and pushing trees"
  "When you lured me into your syrup, all I could think of was what a
     lovely way for me to go"
  "I danced imprisoned in your drumbeat"
[the song then combines images of a dancing rabbit being hunted, and
ties it all together with]
  "The strings of your instrument were strangling me inside their
[a snare being both a means of capture AND a type of drum ... clever!]

Finally the obnoxious up-your-nose noise of "Funk Pop A Roll" ...
"Quick, over this way, it's Hootie!"  (I must say, that line was my
finest Chalkhills contribution!)

Although I think they've surpassed Mummer with every subsequent album,
for me the album is a defining element of their evolution ... if
nothing else, it demonstrated that the glory of English Settlement was
no fluke.

Martin Mummerman


Message-Id: <>
Date: Mon, 14 Apr 1997 16:04:44 -0400
From: Beth Wojiski <>
Subject: Dewitt Henderson said in Chalkhills 3-98:

Dewitt Henderson said in Chalkhills 3-98:

>is it about England that makes people think they don't have to drive?", and
>Mark Fisher wrote a great, intelligent, eloquent response.  And I'd just like
>to add that it should be looked at the other way around:  what is it about
>the USA that makes people think they absolutely, MUST, always, be in their
>own damn car, no matter if we spend stupendous amounts of money on building
>and maintaining roadways, live in many many cities where the air quality is
>below the EPA's acceptable rating, and cover an area equal to the size of
>Georgia (!) with roads?

...How true!  Oh, and I'll steer this back on-topic a bit: if anyone has
ever ridden in a "roundabout", you'd be thankful they have such a widely
developed public transportation system in Great Britain.  (As an American
who lived in Birmingham, England, I could sympathize *completely* with XTC
in "English Roundabout".  Truly terrifying bits of road!  Thank goodness we
don't have that many here in D.C./Virginia!)

Today's XTC words o' wisdom:
 "Don't let the loveless ones sell you a world wrapped in grey"


Message-Id: <v03010d00af785633af3a@[]>
Date: Mon, 14 Apr 1997 17:26:01 -0500
From: Gene Yoon <>
Subject: Spring theatrics

>From: Erich Walther <>
>Perhaps we ought to think
>about starting an AMANDA group for these discussions (but what to call

How about soc.we're-only-encouraging-her.

>From: "Jason 'Buffy' NeSmith" <>
>Finally got a tape of the 'recent demos', and GEE-ZEUS! they're terrific.
>The orchestral arrangement for Easter Theatre is incredible.
>"I'd Like That"s harmonies on the word 'sunflower' always make me think of
>Van Gogh.

Picked my two favorites among the recent demos.  There's something very
appropriately Aaron Copland about Easter Theatre... it's more of a modern
symphonic feeling than anything specific.  It would be something to hear
the Boston Pops do an arrangement of that one, wouldn't it?  (well, it
would be quite something if they do anything XTC)  Reminds me, I hope Andy
Partridge someday scores a real production in musical theatre.  It would be
magical, I know it.

That multilayered "SUNFLOWWWAAA" harmony reminds me of old Moody Blues.  I
know very well of all the Kinks, Beatles, 60's pop influences on XTC and
the sonic similarities, but I've never sunk my teeth into the old originals
(except maybe the Btls) as much as I enjoy hearing XTC do it anew.  I adore
'I Like That' but nothing really on my borrowed copy of Lost Chord.  I'm
exactly clear why.  You really got me.

Finally, I'm overwhelmed at the overwhelming response to my timid query
about the Roches. I'm bowled over and further encouraged that I'm in good
company here on Chalkhills.  I've been moving backwards, or "preceding" to
use a Smart term, through the Roches catalogue, and the last time I
experienced such joy in discovering a whole body of music was when I
started preceding from Skylarking on through to White Music.  Just bought
the Roche's 1989 "Speak," and this album I can categorically recommend to
anyone on Chalkhills.  It's great.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~GY BrU Bx6358 Pr RI 02912
Your karma ran over my dogma.


Message-Id: <>
Date: Mon, 14 Apr 1997 19:02:07 -0400
From: David Pardue <>
Subject: jim paints paul quoth:

<I play "Paul" in an all beatle tribute band, so I could resist a few

Man, I wish I was in the Beatles, too...  If anyone out there is considering
starting up a Monkees tribute band, I can do a pretty mean Peter Tork...  I
can't play the banjo, though.


Message-ID: <>
Date: Mon, 14 Apr 1997 17:00:19 -0600
From: "Jeffrey Langr" <Jeffrey.Langr@MCI.Com>
Organization: MCI
Subject: incivility

>"Not only are you a bitch, but you're an American bitch as well."

Wow, I can't believe someone actually had the gall to say that.  God
save the Kinks.  Even though there are disagreements surfacing on Nail
Ottenstein's great newsgroup (witness the When I Turn Off the Living
Room Light debate), I've never seen someone sink as low as to state this
sort of garbage.  Andy Partridge I am sure would be proud.


Message-Id: <>
Subject: Chalkhills' Children orders received by 13apr97
Date: Mon, 14 Apr 1997 16:43:42 -0700

Sorry folks... lost another hard drive and was disconnected for a few
days.  I was in Vegas for the National Association of Broadcasters
Conference last week where I met Peter Fitzpatrick (you all know who he
is by now, either from drooling over his account of meeting Andy or by
growling about his employer).  It was great to meet another Chalky!

Sorry about the physical length of the post...  I will do my best to
keep these seldom but when I start to receive multiple emails
questioning whether I got their check (and the fact that I was
disconnected)  I have to shotgun the chickencoop to get the info out.

Cheers, Richard

I have received orders for the Chalkhills' Children tape(s) from the
Jose Artecona
Todd Bernhardt
Ben Brand
Jason Brown
John Christenson
Randy Christopher
Phil Corless
Andy Cuthbert
Pune Dracker
Bob Estus
Mark Fisher
Mitch Friedman
Greg Gillette
Ben  Gott
Scott Haefner
John Hedges
Tim Kendrick
Simon Knight
Jeffrey Langr
Richard Leighton
Ira Lieman
Andrew Lippitt
Steve Perley
Troy Peters
Randy Posynick
Dave Ray
John Relph
Della & Steve Schiavo
Tim Schreyer
Harrison Sherwood
Charles Silverman
Thomas Slack
J.D. Smelser
Jeff Smith
Ekram Soylemez
Michael Stander
John Wilkens
Wesley Wilson

I have not yet heard from the following list of people who reserved
(If you ordered under someone elses name, please let me know)
Keith	Beck
Martin	Bell
D	Carney
Miles & Gigi	Coleman
Ed	Dalkowski
Eric	Day
Jennifer	Geese
David	Gershman
Joshua	Hall-Bachner
Keith	Hanlon
Stuart	McDow
Robin	Myrick (n/a)
Kraig	Olmstead
John	Pinto	John.J.Pinto@Hitchcock.ORG
Bradley	Preuss
David	Rubien
Jeff	Scanlon, Jr.
Chris	Spillios
Andrew	Stevens
William	Wisner
Jim	Zittel

Richard Pedretti-Allen
Manager, GBS Phrase Development
Octel Communications Corp.
1001 Murphy Ranch Rd.   MS C1-2N
Milpitas, CA 95035-7912
phone 408.324.4516
fax 408.324.6170


Message-Id: <v03007803af7909c4afa8@[]>
Subject: Tokyo Chalkhills Party
Date: Tue, 15 Apr 1997 10:32:59 +0800

Hi Chalkhillians,

Just a short one to let you all know that the XTC party in Tokyo is
definitely on.  We are meeting in Shinjuku at 6:45 p.m. this Saturday
night.  About 7 people are coming, and I've received enquiries and support
from other people with Japanese connections, people who live in other parts
of Japan and can't make it, and I thank you all.

For those of you who sent regards but are unable to make it, we will be
making toasts (in your names) to Andy, Colin, Dave and (of course) everyone
at Chalkhills.

We will have cameras there (we are in Japan after all) and will have some
shots in case anyone is curious as to what Tokyo Chalkhillians look like.
Let me know.

If you are still lurking out there, and can come to the party, e-mail me
and let's do it.  Don't worry if you cannot speak English - I'm the only
Gaijin, and we plan to use Japanese most of the night anyway.  My Japanese
is not so good, but it definitely improves with alcohol.

Minna san,

XTC no Party wa Shinjuku de April 19 (6:45 p.m. ni aimasu) shimasu.
Nihon-go dake hasanakutemoii,  Watashi dake wa gaijin desukara Minna-san wa
Nihon-go hanasemasu.

Watashi ni e-mail shite kudasai.

Yoroshiku Onegaishimasu

Steve (MGV)

               Don't ask me how I feel - I might really tell you.
                             (Terry Scott Taylor)


Message-Id: <v01540b01af797f916f14@[]>
Date: Tue, 15 Apr 1997 15:57:59 -0300
From: (James Dignan)
Subject: completing the circle

>I love them - have done since 1980 or thereabouts when I bought the first
>album, then "Nurds" then Seductive Reasoning by Maggie and Terre.
>Brilliant - I think I have them all now.  Do you have any Roches on video>?
>I saw them live on TV once, but that was years before I had a VCR.
>>From Todd,
>> "Let me put this into perspective," I said, "On XTC's second last
>recording they used TMBG's drummer."<
>If you mean Pat Mastellotto, don't you mean (one of) King Crimson's
>drummer(s)?  :^)

to turn this post full circle, it is probably worth mentioning (if no-one's
done so already - I'm only skim reading my posts at the moment) that the
Roches were backing vocalists on Cromso Robert Fripp's amazing "Exposure"
album, and he added one of the world's greatest guitar lead breaks to the
Roches delicious "Hammond Song", on their marvellous self-titled first

Roche fan, Crimso fan, XTC flan.

 James Dignan___________________________________               You talk to me
 Deptmt of Psychology, Otago University               As if from a distance
 ya zhivu v' 50 Norfolk Street               And I reply. . . . . . . . . .
 Dunedin, New Zealand               with impressions chosen from another time
 steam megaphone (03) 455-7807               (Brian Eno - "By this River")


Message-Id: <l03102800af78aed324b5@[]>
Date: Mon, 14 Apr 1997 23:14:18 -0500
From: jason garcia <>
Subject: snooty?


Anyone remember that Chalkhills Originals tape that we sent things in
for?  Or was I just fooled into giving up my music for free?  Whassup
wit dat?!?

And, for Chrissakes, STOP THE AMANDA-BASHING!!  You'd think there
were a bunch of 10-year olds on this list.   Sorry, but it's true.  There's
no need to be snooty.

I stumbled upon Geggy Tah live on my University campus the other day.
They're not bad, for a three-piece.  Most of their stuff has that funky
thing that the Spin Doctors had, however, and that's just wrong in my
book.  Oh, and I checked out Sloan (without buying) -  too '60s for me.
"Everything You've Done Wrong" is quite a good little number though.

Macca's "Young Boy" to be released worldwide April 28.

Uh, sorry, no XTC content (flame away).



From: "McDonald, Rojer" <>
Subject: appypollyloggies
Date: Tue, 15 Apr 1997 16:11:00 +1000

Dear Chalkhillians,
Well, the war of nerves that amanda is conducting against some members
of the mailing list makes Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons seem like
some hopeless yet charming puppet show!
However, having seen all these things I've said in the one place at the
one time I can see that I have a case to answer, so I here now and
forthwith apologise totally and unreservedly to amanda for all of my
subtle (and not so subtle) jibes and to any other readers who have been
offended by this too. Chalkhills is not the place to carry out this sort
of vendetta and it won't happen again.
However, I do feel I ought to take you to task over one serious
allegation - I don't recall ever calling you, "an American bitch". That
would be xenophobic and not quite the ticket in a chalkhills journal.
Anyway, I always thought you were Canadian - like David Bowie! Perhaps
you should have a nice lie down before sending off your next
I'm sorry if I upset you - I enjoy the frequency of your submissions and
your witty rejoinders;) Alternatively you could take your friend's
advice and use the page down button. He should probably take that advice
too. I was quite amused by that statement about using the page down
button - I mean it's tantamount to standing in Trafalgar Square wearing
a top hat and announcing that all wearers of hats are queer - not that
there's anything wrong with that! Don't tell us to use the page down
button, mate! A less civilised person would probably tell you to stick
the page down button in your bottom but I'm not going to say that. Stick
your page down bottom in your button!! Quick, page down, page down! But
I digress...
Regarding the sometimes off topic nature of this newsletter, I feel for
both sides. The above written drek is something I felt had to be said to
the whole list and I normally wouldn't bog up the list with it. On the
other hand if not for the odd musical digression I wouldn't know that
Nik Heywood is still alive and producing perfect pop songs, or the
complex pleasures of Robyn Hitchcock. And Martin Newell...well, Blimey!
There I was the other day looking at my copy of Captain Sensible's
"Revolution Now" and sink me if half of it isn't co-written with Martin
Newell! Isn't it funny how everything is all connected together?
Regarding a collaboration between Andy and Lloyd Cole - it sounds very
interesting but I just can't begin to comprehend what the results will
sound like - I mean Lloyd is so r'n'b slick and Andy is so rough sharp
corners and angular (I mean that in the nicest possible way!) if you
know what I mean. Or to juxtapose them another way - urban versus
pastoral??? interesting....
I can see that I'm going to have to tape Mummer and listen to it to and
from work for the next month before I dismiss it altogether. You see, I
am unfortunately from that tribe that worships XTC phase one - White
Music, Goto, Drums'n'Wires and arguably Black Sea (although blood has
been spilt over its inclusion in this early triumvirate). While English
Settlement stands alone I'm afraid Mummer has left me cold for years
however I will persevere with my boot-like ears and see what happens...
Anyway, I, like many others on the mailing list, am sorry you didn't get
to go on holiday, amanda and a big hello and thank you to Kraig Olmstead
- I haven't sold out, I'm just playing dead!
I'll get outta ya way now,
P.S. Amanda, how did you know that Stephanie was a cheerleader and that
I represent the lollie-pop guild??? You silly girl!


Date: Tue, 15 Apr 1997 11:13:44 +0200 (METDST)
From: James Isaacs <>
Subject: human alchemy
Message-Id: <>

In our recent discussions over Mummer, no one has mentioned the video for
"Human Alchemy", which (imho) is their best video.  That thing is really


Date: Tue, 15 Apr 1997 10:31:32 +0100 (BST)
From: Chris Clee <>
Subject: Re:Amanda
Message-Id: <Pine.OSF.3.91.970415101510.10190A-100000@manta>

Well what can I say....try english settlement side 2 track one followed
by side 1 track 2, and side 2 track 2 (just because I really like the
guitar work on that one)...take care and you really ought to spend some
time doing college work too you know (helps with the bills later on in well as improving one's quality of life)

HAPPY DAY to everyone

chris (oh now I know what the big key in the corner does....ho hum)


Message-ID: <>
Date: Tue, 15 Apr 1997 15:49:43 +0200
Subject: off-topic

April 27th the german tv (WDR) will repeat a Utopia concert from 1977. I
know there are a few Todd Rundgren fans on the list, so I hope this is of
any help. The Rockpallast program is on line: (and XTC can be found there
somewhere if you search long enough). If anyone wants me to record the
concert (or an other) let me know.



Message-ID: <>
Date: Tue, 15 Apr 1997 09:04:29 -0700
From: Ian C Stewart <>
Subject: No XTC: Swindon, Cathy Dennis, life

Howdy all

Just got back from two weeks in the UK, including a couple of days in
Swindon.  Seems like most UK natives think Swindon is the kind of place one
should avoid at all costs; us Big Macs over here in McDonaldland think in
our little fairytale dreams about what a neato kind of place Swindonium must
be to give Our Boys so much material to sing about.

I've been there twice now.  I can tell you that it's not exactly packed with
history.  And scenery... forget about it.  Still, I thoroughly enjoyed
myself there both times and I can recommend it to any XTC fans who are
planning trips to England.  Don't go to Swindon for the scenery, go to hear
that Wacky Accent spoken by children; go to see the Queen's Tap right across
from the train station; find Ermine Street on a map.  Send your two XTC fan
friends postcards of the Uffington Chalk Horse from Swindon so it gets a
Swindon postmark.

There were no affordable hotels in Swindon last week so we wound up staying
in the Marriott.  They have a 5-foot model of the Uffington Horse outside
their entrance; it's sort of spray-painted (or something) into a hill across
from the front door.  If you, like me, can't make it out to Uffington
proper, check out the Marriott's little display.  It's cute.  We stayed in
the Acton Barnes Suite.  If I ever get around to writing an action novel,
the lead character will be called Acton Barnes.

No, I didn't have any XTC sightings in Swindon.  Of course not.  And dammit,
I ALWAYS forget to take my copy of "The Big Express" with me to the GWR
Museum. I probably spent half an hour videotaping the wrong damn engine.
And I never seem to have my copy of Moulding's Map Of Swindon when I'm
actually there.  Poo.

We did see Nick Drake's grave in Tanworth In Arden though.  Awesome.

I met an ex-Chalkie and lived to tell.  And never let anyone tell you that
Daniel Prendiville doesn't know his way around the lower portion of Ireland.
Lovely chap.

hey!  Guess What!  I found the new Cathy Dennis CD "Am I The Kinda Girl" in
England.  And guess what else!  Sounds like flippin' "Oranges And Lemons"!
It might just be My Initial Enthusiasm and my natural propensity to believe
that Cathy can do no wrong, but I swear it's a great album.  The Partridge
songwriting bits are incredible.  Intelligent and stupid at the same time.
Guitar on the title track by Dave Gregory.  Total career suicide for a
former pop star like Cathy to go chasing XTC's tail, but... hey, it's great
art. I just have to get this "Bottom Live" video coverted to the US

Ian C Stewart


Date: Tue, 15 Apr 1997 09:32:54 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: Misheard lyrics and the usual fiddle faddle......
Message-id: <>

Okay, not actually a mishearing, but a the ending part of
"The Loving", when there are about six different thigs being sung, what the
heck is (Colin, I think) saying? Sounds like "strange trip".......

I recall Andy making fun of Lloyd Cole, I think it was during the 1989
convention interview when the interviewer asked him what he thought about he
and Colin's appearance on some kids show in the early 80's. (Was it Saturday
Swapshop? I think it was.) And Andy said something to the extent that you
have to have fun with it, and added something about Cole's brooding

Mark! Mark, my good buddy! Good to see you on here! Now there are two of us
heathens (CTD fans) on the if the first part of your last name
means "God", does that mean your name is Mark, God of Chalk? (Or Chalkhills?)

>From Laurie...
>And finally, I have no opinion of Amanda

>From Jim Smart...
>(To this day I know very little about the band,
I suggest this....go to the various websites maintained by Chalkhills
subscribers/XTC fans. There is much info on them, especially in the printed
articles. Or you could buy the bio, Chalkhills and Children. It's a good book,
but the lack of Dave Gregory content does bug me. Seems whenever there's a
book about a band I listen to, the band member that I follow the most always
has the least written about him......

>It was like watching a beautiful, ornate flower turn back into a seed in slow
Whoa, break out the ecstasy! ;)

>This album stands like a monument. Could any other group do this?
Hell no!

>A pretty uneven album, with some real gems...
I have to agree with you on that. I think the general inconsistency has to
do with the fact that...I think three producers were used on the album
altogether, not counting the bonus tracks, some of which were produced by
Andy. (Frost Circus, for instance.) I think the songs on the album are good
songs, but the continuity wavers at times.

>This must have been THE time to see them in concert...or am I showing my
>ignorance again?
Well, seeing as that I was a mere lass of two at the time Black Sea was
released, and four when they stopped touring, I never got to see the band in
what many consider was their finest form. I do have a few live performances
spanning tyheir touring career, from the earliest days on to the very night
Andy turned tail and ran off the stage in Paris, and IMNSHO, they were never
as dynamic or as tight as they were during the Black Sea tour. Back to back,
I have a concert performance they did in...Holland, I believe, during the
Black Sea tour, and they were very energetic and punchy (except Colin, who's
always a bit subdued.) Right after that I have their Rockpalast performance
from around the time English Settlement was done, and I think you could tell
Andy was nervous. There was just something about his mannerisms that led you
to believe he was overcompensating for something.....but enough of that

>Probably need to give this album more listens.
It took me awhile to get used to it. See, I bought my XTC albums in no
particular order. I bought Oranges and Lemons first because it was the only
XTC album I could find in any of the stores I went to. After that I bought (in
this order) Skylarking, Mummer, English Settlement, White Music, Black Sea,
Rag and Bone Buffet, Nonsuch (got the last longbox in the store), Drums &
Wires, and The Big Express. With the way they changed so much ove the years,
I never heard a fixed pattern in their music, so every album I bought jarred
me a bit. (Heavens, I forgot Go 2! I think I bought that between Black Sea &
R&BB) I found that the sound quality was a bit lower on my cd, I had to turn
the volume up more to get the big drum sound Steve Lillywhite helped them

>GO 2
>This is the album where it suddenly dawned on me that Andy is not only a great
>songwriter, but an awesome guitarist, since it's all him here. This has
caused me to reevaluate the whole rest of the catalog, and to raise my
estimation of his mana.
Andy is indeed a fine guitarist. I find he and Dave are very different in
their styles of playing. I find Andy adds a bit more distortion to his
stuff, while Dave's playing is very clean.

>I was suprised by how well I like this album.
This is the only XTC album I have yet to listen to all the way through. I just
can't get past "Heatwave".

>From Erich...
>Perhaps we ought to think about starting an AMANDA group for these discussions
No, no please God NO!!!!!!!

And finally, a funny story......
It was a nice day, had the windows open, I had English Settlement blaring
very loudly whilst I cleaned my room, and the next-door neighbors threatened
to call the cops if I didn't "Turn that shit off". (Funny, Yacht Dance was
the song that was blaring when I received said threat.)

XTC song of the day-Rocket
non-XTC song of the day-Am I the Only One? (Barenaked Ladies)
Je me souviens du soleil


End of Chalkhills Digest #3-99

Go back to the previous page.