Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #5-111

         Chalkhills Digest, Volume 5, Number 111

                   Monday, 1 March 1999

Today's Topics:

                    more XTC sightings
             XTC rap? This is a joke, right?
                       Amazon Andy
             re: The Man with the Magic Touch
                     Seattle Chalkers
                       AV1 Tidbits
           Aren't we all a little thin skinned!
                     river of orchids
                         in brief
                    AV2 track-listing?
                 Anal/rectally challenged
     Random remarks, one of which is of course on....
                      Less is More!
       Apple Venus on alt.binaries.sounds.mp3.1990s
                      Andy in Boston
                      Tears For Dave
                   Fossil Fuel reissue
                  Greenman vs. Spoonman
                   More wordage debate
                       XTC Signings
          Re: The Wicker Man meets The Green Man
                 under-Cooked promotion?


No lyrics in your copy of Apple Venus Volume 1?
Read the lyrics on Chalkhills!

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    The views expressed herein are those of the individual authors.

    Chalkhills is compiled with Digest 3.7 (John Relph <>).

They drift into pub nights with no / Promise for tomorrow.


Date: Fri, 26 Feb 1999 20:12:43 -0800 (PST)
From: Michael K Ong <>
Subject: more XTC sightings
Message-ID: <Pine.SOL.3.96.990226201149.7112A-100000@socrates>

Picked up a copy of the March issue of Pulse! when I
got my second copy of AV1 at the local Tower.  There's
a nice interview with AP along with snippets about AV1
from Song Stories.  There are some cool pictures too -
AP and CM are on the contents page, and then there is
an old picture with Terry and Barry in front of a big

I have to say, the best thing that XTC could do is to
release "Your Dictionary" as a single too.  Looking
forward to seeing Andy in person next week.


Date: Fri, 26 Feb 1999 20:49:20 -0800 (PST)
From: Charles <>
Subject: XTC rap? This is a joke, right?
Message-ID: <Pine.SOL.3.95.990226203910.13482D-100000@alishaw>

I read the following in this mailing list recently:

>>In related XTC news, former GETO BOYS rapper Willie D.
>>has reinterpreted the band's flashback anthem
>>"Dear God" for his upcoming album, with frontman
>>Andy Partridge's permission.

I am sickened, saddened, and stunned.  How many signs of the
apocalypse are there supposed to be?  I figured the last
sign was the Jimmy Page/Puffy Combs "Kashmir" abomination,
and fully expected that insult to be followed immediately by
earthquakes, plagues, fires, and floods of biblical
proportion.  But I see now that the rap version of "Dear
God" is a more appropriate sign of the end of the pop
universe.  Did Andy really give permission for this to
happen or was the decision totally out of his hands?  How
bad does he need the money?  Maybe we can find out how much
he is getting for this rap atrocity, and then offer him even
more if he aborts this travesty.  Count me in for the amount
I was gonna spend on AV1.

Hey, remember when REM had a rapper (KRS-One...or some other
combination of letters, numbers, and symbols) "sing" on
their album?  That was their breakthrough album and they
even won a packet of Grammys, that exalted American symbol
of commercial acceptance.  Perhaps XTC is embarking on a
similar strategy, and "Dear God" is the first salvo (or
their last gasp).

Dear god indeed.



Message-Id: <>
Date: Fri, 26 Feb 1999 22:30:36 -0600
From: Mike McCormick <>
Subject: Amazon Andy

"[An orchestra] allows you to work with different textures.
I got really tired of the electric guitar, and orchestral
sounds have a sort of pagan feel for me. There's a real
sense of timelessness there, so it gave me a much broader
springboard to jump off from. The sounds of violins and
woodwinds are just fantastic. They can send shivers down
your back." --XTC's Andy Partridge, on the recording of
"Apple Venus, Volume One"

Read more of's interview with Partridge at


Message-Id: <>
Date: Fri, 26 Feb 1999 21:27:43 -0800
Subject: re: The Man with the Magic Touch
From: "Russ Reynolds" <>

>>Who do you think would win in a fight: Soundgarden's
>>"Spoonman" or XTC's "Greenman"?
>>TMBG's Triangle Man, of course (he always wins).
>>Robyn Hitchcock's Balloon Man could join in, but
>>Black Sabbath's Ironman would kick all their asses...
>What about Mr. Tambourine Man?  Dogman by King's X?  Rocketman? REM's
>Superman?  ELP's Lucky Man? Big Man on Mulberry Street (Billy Joel)?
>Indigo Girls Chicken Man ... (too obvious) Dio's the Man on the Silver
>Mountain (hey, we all went to junior high).

You mention Billy Joel and it's not Piano Man? What About Carole King's
Jazzman, Bowie's Starman, Kinks' Apeman, Katrina & The Waves' Spiderman, ZZ
Top's Sharp Dressed Man, , Donovan's Hurdy Hurdy Man, Chicago's Happy Man
(there HAS to be a hipper band that recorded a song with this title), Robyn
Hitchcock's Superman (not to mention the Man Who Invented Himself and The
Man With The Light Bulb Head)...and when you think about it, could there
really be a Greenman if there were no Yellowman?  I don't know, man.

Don't touch my bags if you please, Mr. customs man.

-russ (I am the eggman)


Message-Id: <>
Date: Sat, 27 Feb 1999 01:38:39 -0500
From: Adam Tyner <ctyner@CLEMSON.EDU>
Subject: XTC/LSH?

I love it when interests overlap.  :-)  From Allstar Mag.:

As for Gregory's departure, Partridge came to look at it as a relief. "In
the Legion of Superheroes," Partridge says of Gregory, "he was Negative Boy."

-Adam, also a big LSH fan, but, well, it's been kind of bad lately.
Hopefully Andy's more of a '60s/'70's era fan  :-)
/=---------------- ----------------=\
 He-Man, Tuscadero, "Weird Al", Yoo-hoo, Killer Tomatoes, & more!


Date: Fri, 26 Feb 1999 22:44:52 -0800 (PST)
From: Lush  <>
Subject: Seattle Chalkers
Message-ID: <>

>Hey Seattle Chalkers, (& all)
>Are there only two or three of us on this list?  Is anyone going to LA to
>see Andy and Colin?  I'm just curious, I entertained the thought for a
>moment or two.

Hello Lynn.... and other ChalkPeople...

I'm new to the list (and live in Seattle)...  i have also entertained
the thought of going to LA but will be unable to do so...  ah well...

Apple Venus1... LOVE IT!




Message-Id: <>
Date: 27 Feb 99 18:55:48 +1100
From: "Adam Davies" <>
Subject: AV1 Tidbits

Rather than do a new email every time I think of something, here's my
drivel in Digest format.


My previous claim about AP's singing being off-key: Someone made a point
about it sounding 'live', which slots me back into contentment regarding
this issue, but it's also down to minor notational changes that I'm
beginning to pick up on.  Dagnammit, his voice isn't perfect all the time,
but the guy can create music roughly 1000 times better than anything I
could muster.



Regarding Mr P's comment on we 'rabid' internet type peoples: Forgive the
self-righteous nature of the following rant, but I don't know, treating
famous people like demigods shits me to tears.

We all have the ability [and some the maturity] to treat the band members
as private humans and appreciate their music, which I guess is a good
thing.  Then again, Andy evidently doesn't appreciate negative criticism,
even though he seems quite willing to backstab others in particular
contexts.  Hey, maybe he's human, just like the rest of us!  Everyone's a

Here's the thing: I'll bet all of XTC adored someone from afar at some
stage in their lives, possibly even now; and at some point I'll just *bet*
each of them had their bedroom walls lined with photos and articles on one
person or band.  And if human nature doesn't fail me, I'm sure they've ALL
bagged on a performer they didn't know many, many times.

I'm not knocking the guys, but when you sell music to millions of people,
you have to expect people to criticise it!  It goes with the territory.  I
spent three months writing an essay and the lecturer said it was crap.
Shit happens.

There.  I've just done a pat deconstruction of a bunch of people I've never
even met.  Would I like them if I met them?  Would they like me?  Who


Some flame me!  Please...?


The last chorus of Easter Theatre: The demo feels like a climax; the AV1
cut feels like a new beginning.  Does this match the lyrics of the song?


Is it just me, or do the vocal harmonies on River Of Orchids and Harvest
Festival sound similar to some of those on King Crimson's 'Three Of A
Perfect Pair'?  I think it's the breathy low notes that do it for me.


Why did John Relph not get a mention on AV1?  Is he just the zookeeper?  :)

Thank you for listening.


      The statements and opinions expressed here are my own and do
         not necessarily represent those of Oracle Corporation.


Date: Sat, 27 Feb 1999 01:15:06 -0800 (PST)
From: "J. Brown" <>
Subject: Aren't we all a little thin skinned!
Message-ID: <>

David Oh wrote:
> i urge you to listen to their asinine comments & i double-urge you to
> respond.
> again, let's get the bastards!

Am i the only one who didnt get really pissed off at those guys?  I mean
they were totally off the mark but I found these guys are so british they
make ray davies look like he's from Mississippi line very fun albewit
inaccurate.  And as far as making fun of internet fans- Come on this whole
enterprise of Websites and mailing list is extremely geeky!  And sending
nasty emails to these guys will only enforce their opoinion that we are a
bunch of freaks.  i say forget about it and laugh at the shere idiocy of
these guys.

Joe Funk wrote:
> I've got an idea for Eb, ( who is responsible for the following
> utterances ):
> >I don't like "River of Orchids" much either, to be honest. It's certainly
> >ambitious and compositionally impressive, but it feels more like a "stunt"
> >to me than an actual song. I'm reminded of a negative Steely Dan review I
> >once read, where the writer griped that SD's songs communicated nothing to
> >him beyond "Hey, get a load of THIS!" I have a similar feeling about "River
> >of Orchids," though I do smile at those "mmmm"'s between lines -- a typical
> >Partridge vocal decoration which defies all logic yet somehow works.
> " I've listened! And I can't get up!!!! "
> Now, if River of Orchids is a mediocre "clapper" for you also, Just think
> of it as a "stunt" as you referred to it as music!!!!!  You need to "Get a
> Load of This"!!!!  ROR has been already been hailed as a masterpiece of
> modern cyclical music!!!

Well, it's good see Eb is injectiong some attempt at critique on this
list. (there a bit too much mutual masterbation at the alter of XTC on
this list most of the time)  While i disagree with Eb i think his point is
entirely valid.  Something can a stunt and music at the same time mr.
Funk.  River of Orchids has been hailed as a masterpirece?  By who?
Harold Budd Andy's friend. I think the SD comparison holds some merit
especially since Andy has said how clever he though it was and how proud
he was of himself for it.

mr. Funk continued:
> And to Tim:  "I Can't Own Her" Quotes:
> >Sorry.
> >The is the ONLY song on the CD I don't care for - the only one
> >I would have suggested that they drop.
> >RATING:  C-
> C-!!!!,   C-!!!!!
> .........I'm flabergasted!!!!  A beautiful piece of songwriting about a
> very tough subject:
> Relationships!!!!  Have you ever been through a divorce or actually had
> a lover who is your soul-mate?
> You missed the whole picture pal!!!!

Again while i disagree with Tim (i adore I Can't Own Her) i think he is
entitled to his opinion.  To insinuate that Tim doesnt gett it because he
has no expeirence in heart break is assine.

i think some people here have been waiting so long for a new album they
can't stomach anyone criticising it.



Message-ID: <000901be616f$209bd420$9acef7a5@funtosplamisham>
Subject: river of orchids
Date: Fri, 26 Feb 1999 05:02:31 -0500

ive only been on this list (for the second time) for a day now, but ive
noticed that some people dont have a liking for the above mentioned song.  i
find it to be the most exciting song on the new album, simply because it is
a pop song with a circular song pattern.  its interesting and immediate,
much like most of xtc's best stuff.  if you dont like it, you should
definatly give it a few more listens.  im sure its been said, but one more
positive opinion never hurts.
bye now.


Message-ID: <001301be624a$ad5540a0$5e5fac3e@default>
From: "David McGuinness" <>
Subject: in brief
Date: Sat, 27 Feb 1999 12:13:21 -0000

Hello -

Sorry to disturb the flow of 'and I said to Andy ...' posts, but

David in SF wrote:
>P.S.  I find the melodrama on Chalkhills regarding AV1 quite hilarious.
>Did someone actually say he/she cried when he/she first listened to it?

Come on sir.  I think we're agreed that our Mr Partridge is an emotionally
complex man, and that some of his songs reflect that complexity.  And the
reason that some of us like XTC is that we respond to the songs on that
level, amongst others.  It's not pop star adulation we're talking here, just
grown-ups expressing what it's like to be human.  OK I didn't cry when I
heard it but some of the lyrics did make my jaw drop in an 'oh I know what
that feels like' kind of way.  And I know at least one non-XTC fan who did
cry on hearing two of the songs, so there!!


>"Some may say we're a bit overshot , but this could be our finest hour!"

*SURELY* the line is 'a bit of a shower' - but then maybe this doesn't mean
anything in the US ...
Can someone ask Colin at a signing, so that we know??



Message-ID: <>
Date: Sat, 27 Feb 1999 07:29:01 -0800
From: Dan Phipps <>
Organization: CIC
Subject: AV2 track-listing?

Hi all!

While we're all getting X-static over AV1
(fine, fine album!! -- an understatement),
my good friend AP (not Partridge!) over in
the UK sent me the following re: the forth-
coming AV2:

> As mentioned previously, on the Net I found
> what is purported to be a track line-up for
> "AV2" :-

> We're All Light
> Bumper Cars
> You and the Clouds will still be Beautiful
> Wonder Annual
> Church of Women
> Prince of Orange
> Some Lovely (My Brown Guitar)
> Dame Fortune
> Our New Dark Ages
> Wounded Horse
> The Wheel and the Maypole
> The New Country Squires
> Boarded Up
> Ship Trapped in Ice
> Playground
> I Don't Want to be Here

> hopefully we'll find out for real later in 99.

My question -- What do you think, XTC-fans?

Impressive!!!  :-)

Fingers crossed that these track "make it,"

In closing, Av1 is indeed the best thing I've
heard from "The Swindon Two in....well....
seven (!!!!!!!) years.  Was well worth the

C-ya later on the Hill --

/Dan Phipps <>

"Imagination like a muscle will
 increase with exercise."
(Peter Blegvad)


Message-ID: <002301be6230$01f77760$c84797d0@ginsim>
From: "Simon Deane/Gina Chong" <>
Subject: Anal/rectally challenged
Date: Sat, 27 Feb 1999 17:02:26 +0800

Harrison, stooping to your bait, this is what My Dictionary (OUD 2nd Ed.)
says about rectal and anal. It seems that "anal" has to do with the opening
alone whilst "rectal" relates to the last section of the intestine. See
below (errr... why did you want to know?):

<anus ("eIn@s). [L.] 1. The posterior opening of the alimentary canal in
animals, through which the excrements are ejected.

anal ("eIn@l), a. [ad. mod.L. anal-is, f. anus.] 1. a. Of or pertaining to
the anus, or excretory opening.

alimentary canal: the whole channel or passage through the body for
receiving and digesting food and ejecting excrementitious matter.

rectum ("rEkt@m). Anat. and Med. [a. L. rectum (sc. intestinum), neut. of
rectus straight.] The final section of the large intestine (so called from
its form in some animals), extending in man from the sigmoid flexure of the
colon to the anus.

rectal ("rEkt@l), a. Anat. and Med. [f. rect-um + -al1.] Of or belonging to
the rectum. rectal gland, a gland that excretes into the rectum; esp. in
cartilaginous fishes, a gland that excretes salt so as to maintain the
osmotic balance. >

Simon Deane


Date: Sat, 27 Feb 1999 15:07:18 +0100 (MET)
From: Martin van Rappard <>
Subject: Random remarks, one of which is of course on....
Message-ID: <>

Dear Chalkers,

Well, it was torment. I ordered my copy from Musicblvd and sat seething
with jealousy everytime a new digest came in with yet more reviews, and on
other mailing lists people were also hailing it as a masterpiece.

  Then the postcard from Cooking Vinyl arrived, two hours later I walked
into my favourite CD store to hear River Of Orchids over the stereo, and
the next day there was a lovely piece on XTC in De Volkskrant (Dutch
newspaper; Marc already scanned the photo and sent it to John). No wonder I
caved in (I'm actually surprised I managed this long) and bought another
copy. Well, words fail - it's every bit as glorious as I imagined it would
be, and I'm glad I didn't listen to the demos or the samples on the TVT
website so I could take it all in in one big gulp. My neighbours must be
going mad by now.

The owner of the (small) store said it was selling surprisingly well - "I
was kind of apprehensive about ordering it, but I sold about thirty copies
  I also bought the XTC tribute album at the same time, and I join Dom's and
David's opinion (by the way, when's your "Big Day"?) by saying that it's
a complete dud - pah, another $7 wasted!

A snippet of info: I was searching XTC items on GEMM and apparently
Easter Theatre is (to be) released as a single here in Holland - it was
listed as an "Import (Netherlands)".

And a questions: I also came across the item "Explode Together" - can
anybody tell me what this is?



NP: (No comment)


Message-ID: <>
Date: Sat, 27 Feb 1999 09:34:04 -0500
From: Jim Slade <>
Subject: Less is More!

I've now been able to listen to AV1 about a dozen times, and it's all this
skeptical fan could have hoped for.  By ditching studio drummers, intricate
guitar parts, and too-obvious Beach Boys tributes, Andy and Colin have
gotten back to the heart of great, mid-period XTC albums like Mummer and
Skylarking.  The new album concentrates on melodies, great lyrics, and a
comfortable, spring-fever feel, best characterized by "I'd Like That".
"River of Orchids" is a nice nod to Jon Hassel, Phillip Glass, and company.
"Greenman", as others have observed, is in the vein of "The Beating of
Hearts".  My least favorite song is "My Dictionary"; I just don't get into
hearing Andy Partridge moan about being mistreated by his ex-wife.
Nevertheless, the music pulls it together just enough so that I don't need
to hit the skip button.  I've got some 12-inch eps and singles with the
likes of "Red Brick Dream" and "Find a Fox".  The new album has that sort
of simplicity despite the unusual instrumental touches.  Keep a lid on the
reverb, compression, and piccolo snares!  Very nice album that flies in the
face of current trends.



Message-ID: <>
Date: Sat, 27 Feb 1999 08:27:07 -0600
From: Rick Hap <>
Organization: @Home Network
Subject: Apple Venus on alt.binaries.sounds.mp3.1990s

Apple Venus Volume One has been posted to alt.binaries.sounds.mp3.1990s



Message-ID: <>
Date: Sat, 27 Feb 1999 10:34:57 EST
Subject: Andy in Boston

	I am 40 years old felt weird about going to record signing. I
expected Andy to be a bit arrogant and stuck up. To my surprise he most
gracious and took time to talk to everyone. I went with 2 other
friends. Most of the people attending were over 30.

	He signed everything, some people had over 10 items. I wish I
brought more.  My friend got a drawing on the Apple Venus cover. He put two
arms and two legs made a nice drawing.

	He stated he will be doing appearances for the next few months in
America and Japan then returns to the U.S. He was touched at the turnout
both here and in New York.

	Just got an Email from WBOS in Boston that Andy will be doing a
radio interview on Sunday between 9 and 11 am.


Message-ID: <>
From: "Joe Funk" <>
Subject: Tears For Dave
Date: Sat, 27 Feb 1999 07:59:45 PST


>P.S.  I find the melodrama on Chalkhills regarding AV1 quite hilarious.
>Did someone actually say he/she cried when he/she first listened to it?

I have to say both first listenings to "I can't own her" and "The last
balloon" brought tears to my eyes...maybe I'm just an old softie or its
the fact I heard two poignant songs written by "the" best song writer in
the "world", of whom I hadn't heard in 7 years!!

...More than enough to keep me fettle, yeah!!!

And Joel;

>Great slide guitar on "Fruit Nut."  Who's playing it, do you suppose?
Smacks of Dave!!  The tasty little lick on "Easter Theatre" also smacks
of Dave!!

>This album needs a libretto.  The music is well suited to the stage.
Check out digest 5-89 (Andy's Bolero)..I think a ROO ballet would be
very fitting indeed!

Speaking of ROO, there are tears of dismay rolling from my eyes as I
type for those poor souls whom either:
Think it was a "Stunt"!!; or gave it a "Thumbs Down"!!
Ya'll need to giv' it a few listens..Ya' Hear!!! I'm fixin' to giv' it
another myself...

Jill; thanks, and have fun standing in line in SF to talk with AP!!!
Give him a "thumbs up" from me.

R-O-O OH!, Know thats how I spell "chills" in my dictionary!



Message-Id: <>
Date: Sat, 27 Feb 1999 08:18:54 -0800
Subject: Fossil Fuel reissue
From: "Russ Reynolds" <>

I was browsing the on-line stores and I noticed Fossil Fuel is listed as a
Feb. '99 release.  Still on Virgin, however.  What's up with that?  I guess
the bastards reissued to capitalize on in the upsurge of XTC interest that
comes with a new album on another label.

I also noticed (on Music Blvd, CD Now AND Amazon) that apparently it
contains a track called "Life Begins at the Top".  And all this time I
thought it began at the hop.  No wonder my life's so messed up.

Anyone have an old copy you'd like to sell me so Virgin doesn't get my

Russ Reynolds  <>


Subject: Greenman vs. Spoonman
Message-ID: <>
From: Meredith Brechtel <>
Date: Sat, 27 Feb 1999 11:30:36 EST

Howdy 'Hillians!

> Re:
>  Who do you think would win in a fight: Soundgarden's "Spoonman" or
>  XTC's "Greenman"?
> TMBG's Triangle Man, of course (he always wins).
> Robyn Hitchcock's Balloon Man could join in, but
> Black Sabbath's Ironman would kick all their asses...

>I don't hold out much hope for Ray Davies's Plastic Man
>He'd be Nowhere Man!

Ah, yes, but aren't we forgetting about the disco era's famous Rubberband
Man??? He'd kick all their asses (except, of course, Greenman who has
been around a lot longer).




Subject: More wordage debate
Message-ID: <>
From: Meredith Brechtel <>
Date: Sat, 27 Feb 1999 11:30:36 EST

Howdy 'Hillians

>Harrison Sherwood wrote:
>So now that we've gotten "phallic" and "priapic" all straightened out,
>what's the difference between "anal" and "rectal"? Anybody?

Well, "anal" actually refers  to the circular muscle at the opening of
the rectum (the anus).  The rectum is the last segment of the colon.  The
rectum should not be visible outside the body (but sometimes is...we
won't get into that here), whereas, believe it or not, there is a reflex
known as the "anal wink" .  And, before you wonder how it is that I have
knowledge of this phenomenon, let's just say that I have a medical
background, specifically in women's health, and frequently hear stories
about such things.  Hope that answers the question of the moment



Message-ID: <>
From: "a b" <>
Subject: XTC Signings
Date: Sat, 27 Feb 1999 08:36:08 PST

Hello everyone-

I have a favor to ask in my desperation. Would anyone that is going to
one of the signings want to get me an autographed copy of AV1.
Unfortunately for me I can't make it to any of the appearances.  I have
plenty of rare xtc material that I could trade you for it, or I could
just pay you a fair amount.  After reading the posts about the NY
signing, it seems like it wouldn't be too difficult to get an extra
autograph.  Would anyone like to give it a try?  I'll definitely make
you a generous offer.  Please e-mail me privately if you want to try to
arrange something. Thanks a lot.



Message-ID: <000201be6273$28ec79e0$bd5808c3@w8k1p3>
From: "Dave Hall" <>
Subject: Re: The Wicker Man meets The Green Man
Date: Sat, 27 Feb 1999 06:51:20 -0000

>Has anyone ever seen the film 'The Wicker Man' , made in the early '70's,
>where Edward Woodward goes to investigate the disappearance of a young girl
>on a remote Scottish community at the time of the harvest? I won't ruin it
>for you but there is a scene of a May day celebration - mummers and all -

I preferred the scene with Britt Ekland wandering about with her lungs out!



Message-Id: <v04003a01b2fdd65ae426@[]>
Date: Sat, 27 Feb 1999 09:38:32 -0800
From: David Haakenson <>
Subject: under-Cooked promotion?

An observation about packaging and promotion: Say what you will about
Virgin, but this has always been one of their strengths, with virtually
every major and minor artist receiving any manner of neato packaging and
limited edition treatment from 1977 onward.

Unfortunately, when the lads chose Cooking Vinyl, my heart sank a bit. I
loved hunting down every rarity as it was released, even driving from North
Dakota to a shop in Chicago after phoning and discovering they had the
Nigel gameboard sleeve the week it was released. And it all started when I
found Go2 cellophaned together with Go+ and a huge XTC poster and a bright
green Virgin sticker touting the limited edition, in of all places, a
record store in Fargo.

But Cooking Vinyl (bless them for signing XTC!!) seem too small to pay for,
or possessing too little design sense to create, the neato ads, press
releases, CD-single covers (who among you actually likes the front sleeve
for "I'd Like That"?), etc.

A quick look at eBay uncovers a Cooking press kit for AV1, with printed
materials that look like a grade school created them. Can't they afford an
iMac and a copy of QuarkExpress? Crayolas may be cheaper, but it'd be nice
if we could attract new listeners to XTC instead of just holding on to the
loyal among us who are content (er, maybe just willing) to sit idle for
years until a new release is burped out.

Don't get me wrong. I'm a loyal fan who has every vinyl/CD release ever
known, and who years ago brought much of the European TV video material to
the States that we continue to swap. But I continue to be wary of the
decision to go with a small label that may cul de sac the band future.
Sure, it's noble and laudable to be a cult band, but that doesn't pay the
bills. Money was an issue when leaving Virgin. One doesn't need to let
things escape from the shed, but when they are willingly released into the
world, it would be nice to nurture them to fullest potential and dress them
properly. If Virgin was bad for slaughtering "Wrapped in Grey" before it
was officially released as a single, one wonders how it feels to send a
child onward, dressed in somewhat tattered clothes? Badge of honor? I think

Best foot forward, but hoping for better shoes...

David Haakenson
(count me among the fans enjoying the constant rain of Seattle)


End of Chalkhills Digest #5-111

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