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Subject: Chalkhills Digest #5-127


         Chalkhills Digest, Volume 5, Number 127

                 Wednesday, 10 March 1999

Today's Topics:

                    Re: AV2 cover art
                  A Bit of This and That
                       Mix Magazine
                     Sad to report...
Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaagggggggggggggggggggghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!
                Re: Possible album titles
                    Sequencing issues
       Honey, don't compromise, this one goes to 11
              Salon's glowing review of AVv1
                         Re: AV1
Re: AV 1seeps into other discussions (Or IGNORANT TEXTURE-L)
                     Father Moulding?
                 Greenman vs. Scissor Man
                    The Meeting Place
                  Re: A bit of a shower
              What ever happened to beauty?
             Old stuff, churches & timewarps
                     Re: glass/reich
                re: XTC In Mall Rotations?
                           Ahem
                    No Language: live
                         Re: Hits
            A most sincere "thank you!!!" :-)

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I'm under a flourescent light.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Message-Id: <199903090544.VAA19965@sparrow.prod.itd.earthlink.net>
Date: Mon, 08 Mar 1999 21:43:26 -0800
Subject: Re: AV2 cover art
From: "Russ Reynolds" <rcreation@earthlink.net>

>5. Any thoughts on what AV2's cover art should look like, and why?

I vote for a hot dog.

-russ

------------------------------

Message-ID: <36E4BF7B.99BFCCDB@mediaone.net>
Date: Tue, 09 Mar 1999 01:28:11 -0500
From: Don & Sue Parker <DonSueP@mediaone.net>
Subject: A Bit of This and That

Greetings Greenfolk,

Warning - here's a rare and rather long four-parter from me today (but
others have posted five or six times since my last so that's fair) . . .

Topic One -  Good Golly Miss Molly!

Apologies in advance, and believe me I have been trying hard to follow
everyone's lead of exercising restraint but . . . remember in the movie
Who Killed Roger Rabbit? when they forced the poor little 'Toon out of
hiding by repeatedly knocking on the walls with just the first five
beats of "Shave and a Haircut . . . " until Roger could no longer
restrain himself and would surely have exploded if not for jumping in
with the punch line?  Well, Molly is the repeat knocker and here comes
my "Two Bits!"

>> "River of Orchids -  This song does sound great when the volume is
up, and in my CD-ROM."

Did you say volume up *and* in the CD-ROM?  Oy!  No wonder I wasn't
getting this track . . .

>> "I'd Like That -  I love the clapping so much I start clapping along
with it."

I can't explain this one, but the images I get from this are just
precious.

>> "I Can't Own Her -  I'd probably put this down on my list of XTC
songs."

Yes, I think putting this down on your list of XTC songs is a relatively
safe thing to do.

>> "Harvest Festival - You can picture being at a festival, well at
least I do."
>> "The Last Balloon - This song makes me think of flying in a hot air
balloon."

What an imagination!

>> " . . . but I'm a professional critic.  I just told you my feelings
about the songs, you can agree with me, but could you write your
comments to me privately."

So let me get this straight, Ms. Freud, you're "a professional critic"
and I "can agree with you" as long as I send my comments privately.
Seems I've followed the instructions properly.

>> " . . . the DJ that read it said she's going to listen to the album
to see if she'll play it.  I have no idea what that means . . ."

Maybe it means that she's going to listen to the album to see if she'll
play it.  Just a thought.

Sorry Molly, sorry to everyone else too, just consider this my "Your
Dictionary", and now that I've got it out of my system I'll go right
back to being my sweet old self once again . . .

Topic Two -  Peckham Prose?   Poison Rose?

I proudly offer up the nerdiest twist to the album naming convention by
pointing out a pattern in the number and sign of the letter differences
from lyric to title, i.e. "orange and lemon" became Oranges and Lemons
(+2 letters), "nonesuch" became Nonsuch (-1 letter), "apple venus"
became Apple Venus (+/- 0 letters), so following the progression leads
to the inevitable conclusion that the next album should have a lyric
that, um, hmm . . . thinking back to my SAT training . . . um . . . . er
. . .  Let me get back to you on this one, OK?

Topic Three -  I Admit It's Getting Better.

Without a doubt though, AV1 is an early 'odds-on favorite' for
continuing a personal trend where each XTC album has proved itself to me
sooner or later to be the best thing they have ever done!  You may very
well think otherwise, but to this my only reply would be, "Ah, but think
then how much better it would be to be me in this situation!"

Topic Four - Better Gosh, then God.  If you don't believe in Gosh, you
just get Darned to Heck.

>From my first eBay purchase - a Geffen Press Kit for 'Oranges and
Lemons' - here's a quote from Andy which may help contain the resurgent
discussion of his, ahem, religious tendencies: "The idea that religion
is about people wanting power and using adult fairy tales to keep other
people in line is age-old.  What bothered me was that some people
thought the song meant I believed in God.  It should have been more
poisonous.  But it's tricky being honest.  You have to dress it up so
people can take it in and swallow it.  You have to coat it in sugar and
make it bite-size.  The problem is that to do it in three and a half
minutes you have to edit out a lot of bones.  You take it down from
dinosaur bones to chicken bones, and hope one sticks in their throats."

Bon Appetit!

Don

------------------------------

From: gravity@loop.com
Message-Id: <3.0.32.19990308230324.007ba330@pop.loop.com>
Date: Mon, 08 Mar 1999 23:03:25 -0800
Subject: Mix Magazine

Hey
I'm not sure this has been on the list previously.
It's impossible for me to get all the way through
these posts as they come in every five minutes !
I have just finished reading a very good article / interview
with AP in Mix Magazine latest issue.
For any recording buffs especially it's a very good read.
Tits up !
Gringo Esta

------------------------------

Message-ID: <01BE6A09.37DC31A0@robert>
From: Robert Wood <wobbit@bigfoot.com>
Subject: Sad to report...
Date: Mon, 8 Mar 1999 23:14:10 -0000

...AV1 seems to have dropped completely out of the UK charts - so it spent
one week in at no. 42 :-(

------------------------------

Message-ID: <009c01be6a1c$b2782780$0df032ca@speedking>
From: "Simon Curtiss" <mduffy@clear.net.nz>
Subject: Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaagggggggggggggggggggghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!
Date: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 00:05:07 +1300

HI there

Another de-lurk (after about 2 months) - this time in frustration. I live
in New Zealand and I can't see any signs of _Apple Venus Vol 1_. After
waiting over two weeks for my order from Music Boulevard to arrive - NOT, I
thought I'll see if it's turned up in the shops - no sign. I asked the shop
assistant if the new XTC album was out or due for release and after
clearing up a little confusion over the name - 'what band? TLC?'  'NO -
XTC', he checked the computer - no sign at all - Bugger.  Anyone else in NZ
got hold of a copy ??  So far all I have heard is the Liquid Gold _I'd Like
That_ and a few of the MP3 segments.  So Rafael you're not the only one
suffering.

Someone (sorry deleted digest) said
 >If you like "River of Orchids", you may wish to try Reich's "Music for 18
Musicians" or "Tehillim" (two of my favorites).

Hear Hear - Also Drumming and there is an album called _Shift_ by a guy
named Chris Hughes (Tears for Fears producer - I think) which covers Steve
Reich's work -  mainly _Drumming_ and thats fabulous too, it never sounds
the same twice. The only way I can think of describing it is intricate
mathematical equations turned into music. It's my desert island disc & my
stress reliever - and all that from an album I picked out of the cheapo bin
'cos I liked the cover! E-mail me at Simon@Frenz.com if any of you
minimalist lovers want the catalogue number etc.

People have been discussing the (non)production of the FinnBros album -
sorry I love that album and I love the production, truly a record that
sounds how the artists wanted it to sound. I've sold more people onto Neil
& Tim in their various incarnations through that album than any other.

Also I'm another person wanting (needing!) someone to sell/trade me copies
of the demos. Particularly the AV1/2, Skylarking & Nonsuch albums ,
especially tracks that look unlikely to make it to AV2. Recommendations
invited.

It's great to see the continued love of XTC on these messages - what a
wonderful place the internet is. The part that makes me sad is all the old
stuff I binned/sold for tuppence when I left the UK to come out here 6
months ago. I didn't think there was anyone else out there still interested
and as I had the tracks on CD I got rid of the vinyl - I could cry at what
I parted with including: The Colonel 7", Three Wise Men 7", Nigel 7", Great
Fire 12", Grass 12", Senses 12", Big Express - round cover LP, etc. I'm
sure someone would have wanted to trade for those!  Luckily I hadn't
replaced all the albums yet.

I'll shut up now

Simon

Who loves Nonsuch and can't believe people don't like Omnibus. Maybe you
have to be a) English, b) male c)have been on a school/college/company/etc
trip on a bus/coach/ferry/hovercraft/transit van/train with a bunch of half
pissed (english use of the word) people and tried to chat up everyone of
the opposite persuasion not caring if you were rebuffed or not 'cos you
were happy. Maaaaaaaaaaan that song makes me smile.

------------------------------

Message-Id: <2.2.32.19990309113423.02580728@pop-server.austin.rr.com>
Date: Tue, 09 Mar 1999 05:34:23 -0600
From: Mitchell Harding <mitcharf@mail.utexas.edu>
Subject: Re: Possible album titles

>If XTC were not going to call their next album "Apple Venus Vol.  2," what
>phrase or word from the lyrics to "Apple Venus Vol. I" would make a good
>title?

Maybe "That Longing Look"?  "Sunflower"?  "Growing In Your Rain"?

In other news, everyone should visit:
http://www.angelfire.com/tx2/mitcharf/zodiac.html

It builds character.

Harf,
Mitch
http://ccwf.cc.utexas.edu/~mitcharf/index.html

"Whatever is begun in anger ends in shame."
 - Benjamin Franklin

------------------------------

From: sclarke@maritz.co.uk
Message-ID: <8025672F.003F72F8.00@lisa.maritz.co.uk>
Date: Tue, 9 Mar 1999 11:34:35 +0000
Subject: Sequencing issues

John Gardner wrote

> this album does one thing most others didn't: uses a computer for
> sequencing.  There are other albums which have used computers, I know
> this, but it is on this album that I think XTC is cheating us from their
> talents.  The entire album is sequenced-sounding.  Even the string
> compositions.  One reason why I am sure Dave left the band, due to lack of
> creativity/musical -acoustical input.  Dave is clearly not a
> synth/sequencing techo-junkie; he's acoustic.  And, while I enjoy this
> album, it has lost that acoustic-ness (or electric-ness, for that matter).
> Let's hope Dave comes back at the bequest of Andy's vanity.

I'd have to disagree.  "River of orchids" is an obvious (and very
successful i think) experiment in computer sequencing using layered loops
of different lengths etc, but the rest of the album???!?  tracks like "I'd
like that" and "Knight in shing karma" are very sparse 'written on a guitar
in the bedroom' efforts and "I can't own her" is an old fashoined piano &
orchestra ballad.  Interestingly, Skylarking *was* mostly arranged on Todd
Rundgren's computer and that's a favourite album of a lot of people.

I think Dave left the band because Andy wanted most of the tracks done
exactly like the demos and he had very little creative input.  I'm sad to
see Dave leave the band, but given how good some of the demo arrangements
are, I'd have to side with Andy.

-Steve Clarke

------------------------------

Message-ID: <36E511E0.B2F38BDE@erols.com>
Date: Tue, 09 Mar 1999 07:19:45 -0500
From: Todd and Jennifer Bernhardt <toddjenn@erols.com>
Subject: Honey, don't compromise, this one goes to 11

Hi:

Gary Williams responded to Matt Keeley:

> You are obviously NOT a serious musician or artist, and if you are it is
> not your primary source of income.
>
> Those of you out there truly interested in this topic are urged to avoid
> misanthropes like Negativland and instead dig up a copy of "The Art of
> Music Licensing" by Al Kohn or "This Business of Music" by Bill
> Krasilovsky.  There you will find serious discussions of this issue.

Gary, my genuine thanks to you for the serious discussion of the issue -- I
learned something from it -- but lighten up. No need to be so
pedantic. More flies with honey than vinegar, and all that (actually, you
probably get the most flies with a pile of fresh, steaming horseshit, but
let's move on, shall we?).

Alan quoted from _Guitar Player_ magazine, and then opined:

> That's a different slant than I've read elsewhere, and as much as
> I love Andy and his songs, I think he's somewhat of a fool not to
> slightly compromise for the sake of retaining such a gifted musician.
> Dave was a vital part of XTC music for nearly 20 years, as you all know.
> I'll miss him. But on with the show, anyhow.
> <snip>
> At least it should serve as an inspiration to all composers;
> Don't throw the baby out with the bath water !

One point of view, to be sure, but I think I'll side with Andy: Don't
compromise at all in the pursuit of your art and your vision of it. AV1 is
proof enough for me.

To paraphrase Stormy Monday, "XTC is great with or without Dave
Gregory. Dave Gregory is great with or without XTC." As you said, on with
the show!

Alan said:

> As a musician/composer, I'm extremely inspired by this release and
> xtc's small but loyal fan-base. I can't wait for Apple Venus 11.

Wow -- those boys must have really been productive during the last seven
years!  And I thought I had all the demos. Or maybe they're tired of
looking for appropriate lyrics from previous albums...

--Todd

------------------------------

From: STakesh@aol.com
Message-ID: <73b5f41e.36e51833@aol.com>
Date: Tue, 9 Mar 1999 07:46:43 EST
Subject: Salon's glowing review of AVv1

Hi, everyone,

Here's the address of Salon's short, but favorable, review:

http://www.salonmagazine.com/ent/music/reviews/1999/03/09review2.html

Cheers,
Stephanie

------------------------------

Message-ID: <36E4D6EA.3D6D@bhip.infi.net>
Date: Tue, 09 Mar 1999 08:08:15 +0000
From: Brian <mattone@bhip.infi.net>
Subject: Re: AV1

Tschalkgerz!

I'm curious: why all the discussion about the album "name" for AV2?
Is it NOT going to be AV2? Doesn't the album liner even refer to AV2? If
it's not going to be AV2, why are we even referring to AV1 as AV1?

Hmmmm...

--
 BRIAN THOMAS MATTHEWS
* Digital & traditional illustration/animation
* Caricaturist-for-hire
* RENDERMAN ~ One-Man Band Ordinaire
SAPRINGER CENTRAL ~ http://www.angelfire.com/fl/sapringer

------------------------------

Date: Tue, 9 Mar 1999 08:19:51 -0500
Subject: Re: AV 1seeps into other discussions (Or IGNORANT TEXTURE-L)
Message-ID: <19990309.081959.-19663.0.skybar80@juno.com>
From: Ken A! <skybar80@juno.com>

Chalkheads,

erik schlichting <eriks@ci.conover.nc.us> Says :
<<<<<<<<I found that it had (quite
favorably) leached into the Catherine Wheel list.

Speaking of which, let me give a huge thanks to my fellow Texture-L
(Catherine Wheel mailing list) members (or Texturites, as we call
ourselves) for NOT giving a damn (with the exception of one person, who
is also on Chalkhills) when I tried to get the XTC fans on Texture-L all
pumped up about the then-upcoming release of AV1. It seems that when I
post about something on Texture-L , it's forgotten, but someone else
brings it up later (as it was brought up on Texture after the release) it
becomes an actual topic worth discussing. I'm, not the only Texturite to
feel this way. That list can be very ignorant at times, and I've got a
few friends there who can agree!

"But Ken, why are you on Texture anyway??"

Glad you asked. Since the Catherine Wheel "official" website hasn't been
updated since like May of 1997, the list is my only source of CW info.

Anyhoo, sorry to bring up something that should have gone to Texture-L
instead of Chalkhills. Just had to get that off my chest, for this has
irritated me for a loooooog time.
------
XTC-related schtuff :

AV1 never ceases to impress me (I don't care if ROO is a "stunt".). And
what is so wrong with being driven to tears by AV1? I had only been
waiting 2 years for the release of AV1, but I still felt the same way all
of you who had waited 7 years felt when they gave it a first spin. The
album just gets ya in a certain way, especially when you consider the
bullshit they had to go through to release this masterpiece.

The songs on AV1, especially Colin's, make it sooooo hard to believe that
these were the same guys who wrote "X Wires", "Roads Girdle The Globe",
etc etc etc...!!! I mean, it all still sounds like XTC, but, wow, AP and
CM have really improved album after album IMHO. (Yeah, flame bait. I
Know.)

Openly fond of  " ' My Weapon' and / or anything else Barry Andrews
wrote" (So sue/flame me),
Ken A.

------------------------------

From: WWi8064839@aol.com
Message-ID: <b1f9fc5e.36e521a9@aol.com>
Date: Tue, 9 Mar 1999 08:27:05 EST
Subject: Father Moulding?

I checked out http://homewown.aol.com/mashkow/xtc.html

RE: the third photo down - Colin looks like a priest!

"Bless me, Colin, for I have sinned..."

:-)

Wes (Wilson)

------------------------------

Message-ID: <3D85076C0A06D211A6ED0008C7F4197F0680A0@phsexch8.partners.org>
From: "Crawford, Bruce" <BCRAWFORD1@PARTNERS.ORG>
Subject: Greenman vs. Scissor Man
Date: Tue, 9 Mar 1999 08:42:45 -0500

Anyone care to weigh in on a Texas Tornado Death Match (reference for
all you wrestlin' fans out there) between Greenman and Scissor Man? I
can see it now... Billed as a family grudge between the energetic
Scissor Man and his sibling Greenman. Will Greenman be placed in the
book of names? Or will Scissor Man be forever tied to Greenman?

Now taking suggestions for a "Partridge 3:16" in honor of this historic
match...

------------------------------

From: RiknBkr@aol.com
Message-ID: <f14db790.36e532a7@aol.com>
Date: Tue, 9 Mar 1999 09:39:35 EST
Subject: The Meeting Place

Hi fellow Chalkers, here's my story in meeting the boys at the Virgin store
in LA.

I didn't think I would be doing this at my age, but since I've met some of
my musical heroes and enjoyed that moment I thought why not add the
experience with Colin and Andy.  Plus all of the previous entertaining
posts concerning the record store meeting piqued my interest even more.
Keep 'em comin.

Well, got into LA for the signing at Virgin at around 3:00. Nobody there.
I was a bit worried, but I saw flyers advertising the event on the shop
windows so I was relieved it wasn't cancelled.  Some people looked like XTC
fans....but what does a typical XTC fan look like.

Went into the Sam Ash music store and decided to play some guitar.  Got a
12 string and started playing "Senses"....you never know, someone may have
wanted to join in.  Wonder if Andy and Colin checked it out after the
signing.  Anybody stay till the end?

The line up was upstairs and that's where I met some lovely Chalkpeople.
Hopefully all of you are typing you're experience in your offices during
work hours.....Aha!!!  Hope your ankle's OK Lynn.

As I was approaching the signing area, I noticed that I knew one of the
guys that was behind the counter next to Andy and Colin.  I worked with him
at a record store about 15 years ago, and he was a big XTC fan as I was.
We always played XTC stuff over the store stereo system all night long when
we worked together.  Hopefully made some converts. Anyway, when I finally
got up to the counter area, I asked him if he had worked at the same record
store.  He said yeah about 15 years ago.  I told him so did I and if he
remembered me giving him XTC's Wonderland picture disc.  By this time Andy
P. was listening in and looked rather amused.  My friend tapped Andy on the
shoulder and said to him...."I haven't seen this guy for 15 years" and Andy
chimes in "neither have I" or something like that.

I think by this time my adrenaline was kicking in and I don't remember much
of my actions or mumblings (something I was practicing to avoid the
previous day...think Luca Brazzi in the Godfather, before he meets the Don)
but nevertheless I shook Andy's hand and told him who I was. I gave him a
copy of the English Settlement '45 which I asked him to sign to my
daughters since they love that song.  Told him how its fun to hear a 5 year
old singing "1,2,3, 4, 5 ....." at the top of their lungs.  Andy said
something like "Yeah we should've released one with "A, B,C, D,E......"
Also got them to sign copy of a 12" promo of All you Pretty Girls, a copy
of the new CD and a copy of Making Plans for Nigel game board '45 sleeve.

Something I enjoyed about everyone's posts are the descriptions of
illustrations Andy has been making on the picture sleeves.  In hindsight I
should have brought in the more illustrated ones like "Dear God" 12", "Wake
Up", even the "Grass".  They really would be suitable for framing, but they
would also be defaced by the writer making them again another illustrated
work of art.  So I went for the rarer records instead.  Don't know
why...I'll never sell 'em.

On the English Settlement sleeve Andy put eyeglasses on the face making the
sleeve really look like Andy now.

The Nigel one there's a picture of the parents and in the Mom's hair he
drew my name and put a mustache on her .  Since I was blabbering so much
about how my kids like their songs and blah..blah..blah..about the kids...I
thought the caricature was rather like me, the overbearing mother.  Made my
wife and I laugh.

On the new CD he put a drawing of little watering can that he's holding and
watering Colin's hair.

I told him that I had heard his demos and I then gave him a copy of mine.
He pulled back and said "ohh, into the bin it goes".  Not the trash bin
though.  I also gave one to Colin.  I talked to Colin the most.  Andy
seemed really tired, but still genial but Colin seemed to open up more to
me.  I told Colin that I had heard the new release probably won't be out
until next year, which he confirmed.  I also asked him whether it was all
going to be recorded in his house.  He told me that parts of the latest
release, AV1, were recorded that way, but now he's preparing to build a new
studio in the back of the house.  Then I asked him if his wife shoots out
little daggers from her eyes when he buys new equipment, since I can
relate.  He laughed and said sometimes.  I got a picture of them with me
(THANKS LYNN!!)  and said goodbye and that was pretty much it.  They seemed
pretty genial and taking their time with everyone.

I hung around the back of the counter and started talking to my friend that
worked at the record store.  He works for TVT and he was in charge of
taking care and "driving" Andy and Colin around.  What an honor!!!  Could
you imagine looking to your right and into your rear view mirror with
"them"?  Would Andy be playing with the radio dial constantly?

He told me they were pretty tired and hadn't eaten since early in the
morning.  They had been doing interviews and other promotional stuff all
day.  But they hung in there and Andy insisted that they meet everyone
before they even had a bite to eat.

I asked him if I was stupid in giving them copies of my demos, thinking
they would basically throw them in the trash or even record over them.  He
told me no, that was a good thing to do.  He said that they been listening
to every one of them.....we'll see what happens.

Sorry this post is taking up quite a bit of space....but I'm still on high.
Like a sunflower!!!

Cheers,
Phil

------------------------------

Date: Tue, 9 Mar 1999 02:01:41 -0500
From: Steve Pitts <Steve_Pitts@compuserve.com>
Subject: Re: A bit of a shower
Message-ID: <199903090201_MC2-6D3B-A750@compuserve.com>

Chalkfolks,

In 5-118 Michael Davies asked:

> what does "we're a bit of a shower" mean? <

I would say a rabble, but I'll resort to the dictionary for an official
definition:

"shower n. 5. Brit. slang - a derogatory term applied to a person or group
esp. to a group considered as being slack, untidy, etc."

It is the sort of thing that a Sergeant-Major might say (or perhaps, have
said) to a platoon of raw recruits.

Cheers, Steve

------------------------------

Message-ID: <900822C71730D2118D8C00805F65765C4818BD@EINSTEIN>
From: Jill Oleson <oleson@moneystar.com>
Subject: What ever happened to beauty?
Date: Tue, 9 Mar 1999 11:09:09 -0600

Jan Bletz, who said "perfect beauty is perfect with me,"
kindly shared with us a Dutch newspaper review of AV1.
Although they liked AV1, it was said that they hope AV2
will be less polished than AV1 and its 'perfect beauty'.

I find it disconcerting that in the perpetual crush of our
post-modern world so many of us have developed an
aversion to beauty.  It is a subject I've been mulling over for
several years ever since the Texas Fine Arts Association
held a statewide panel discussion titled "What Ever Happened
to Beauty?"

At the time, this seemed like a rather strange topic for a
panel discussion on the making of art, but since I've not been
able to get the notion out of my head, I've decided it is really one
of the primary questions of the final decade of the 20th century.

While it seems that in both fine art and music, concepts such
as pain and angst are readily embraced, concepts such as joy
and beauty are reviled.  Why is that?  Have we lost our ability
to appreciate beauty?  Do we not trust it?  Does it somehow
seem more shallow than that which is ugly?

Even our so-called "beautiful people" look haggard, like junkies--
poor skeletons that step out in clothes too small for average,
normal people.  Why revere that?  Why try to achieve that?

My personal observation is that as we move closer to the coming
century, we are as a group allowing more beauty in our lives.
I'd like to think that "Apple Venus, Volume 1" is emblematic of
that notion.  What do you think?

Jill Oleson
Austin, Texas
(artist and arts writer in my spare time)

------------------------------

Message-Id: <s6e56962.072@plextek.co.uk>
Date: Tue, 09 Mar 1999 18:32:23 +0000
From: Philip Lawes <PJL@plextek.co.uk>
Subject: Old stuff, churches & timewarps

Yonks ago John Morrish wrote *
>Andy is doing a month of interviews in the States, each of which will give
>him another chance to explain precisely why he now thinks Dave was negative,
>uncreative and "a panic buy with no guarantee".
>
>This last comes from an exhaustive piece in the current Mojo.

I somehow feel obliged to correct this.  The Mojo article actually
quotes AP as saying;
"We knew he played his instrument very well.  And we needed somebody
quickly who could competently carry a musical load, touring-wise.  It
was a panic buy that we thought *would* have guarantee to it.  I was
relieved he didn't write." (my asterisks).

Although he's damning with faint praise a little he's not being entirely
negative about DG.  Having said that, of course, you'll find no shortage
of AP slags off DG quotes in this and other interviews, putting part of
the blame on what he perceived as diabetically induced mood swings. At
least Dave is given a chance to put his side - as you'll see in the
extract currently on Chalkhills.  I personally have great admiration for
anyone with diabetes who has the discipline to survive the
irregularities of the musicians lifestyle, let alone enjoying touring.
I can't believe that the split happened just because Dave had been half
an hour without a Mars Bar though.

Regarding the Greenman high church debate I definitely think that it
must be 'An unknowing church will amplify his call' and lowercase high
church.  If you wander around the average English churchyard you'll
usually find a good many links back to our pagan past which have been
incorporated into church architecture or ritual.  There's usually a yew
tree for example (some of which may be over a thousand years old). This
is a highly poisonous tree (keep your kids away from the berries) which
sometimes links back to the sites pre-Christian religious use.  I'm
looking forward to sticking AV1 in my walkman and wandering round the
wonderful church at Ickleton down the road while Greenman plays.  It's
eleventh century but it's on the Michael ley line, so that and the yews
suggest that the site's history goes back a fair way before that.  For
those interested it's got a couple of  good pew ends typical of Michael
line churches - Michael with his scales and also a dragon.  It's also
got some of the few remaining 12th century frescoes including a rare
(14th c.) bare-breasted St. Mary (Easter Theatre anybody?).

Talking of tapes and Walkmen it might help the lad's chart position if
all 'hillers with money to burn go out and buy the official cassette of
AV1 rather than running one off at home.  The UK cassette seems to be in
a standard plastic case rather than a US-style fag packet but it's in
Cambridge HMV at only 5.99 Sterling, so buy, buy, buy.  Anybody know the
latest UK chart position, I have a feeling that it's heading the wrong
way away from #42?

Easter Theatre the first UK single?  Stonking song, but anybody else
feel that Harvest Festival is more likely to bring up the hairs on the
back of the necks of the band's thirty-something core audience
(especially if they have kids).  You should never underestimate
nostalgia and sentimentality as tools for getting a song noticed.  It's
the chairs scraping on the floor effect at the beginning that gives me
the Proustian rush,  and when the slightly off key recorders come in -
well then I'm in a timewarp (I can almost smell the floorpolish).

Other thoughts on the album - well I'm not sure how well the sentiments
of 'Your Dictionary' sit with 'Do what you will but harm none'.  Great
song though, and the upbeat ending turns it on it's head.

-Phil (coming back round from being eight years old again).

BTW, was that Mr. Gregory on Top of the Pops with Bryan Adams the other
week?

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Message-Id: <l03110704b30b3261e3c3@[206.173.241.55]>
Date: Tue, 9 Mar 1999 12:33:24 -0800
From: Eb <gondola@deltanet.com>
Subject: Re: glass/reich

>From: Tyler Hewitt <tahewitt@yahoo.com>
>
>Me, too! ROO seems much more like Reich than Glass.

I don't see why people keep talking about minimalism, exclusively with
regard to "River of Orchids." Personally, I think "Easter Theatre" is far
more "minimalist." Check the pulse in the verse!

Eb

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Message-ID: <36E5854F.9A775F36@gge.com>
Date: Tue, 09 Mar 1999 12:32:28 -0800
From: Dan Duncan <dan@gge.com>
Subject: re: XTC In Mall Rotations?

Neal H. Buck wrote:
>An XTC moment: Back around "release day" (already bought my copies), in

>our Mall to see if Goody "got it", hear "Life Begins at the Hop"
>blasting from Abercombie & Fitch across the hall.

I heard Muzak instrumentals of "Mayor of Simpleton" and "King for a Day"
in the lobby of an airport hotel in South San Francisco.

-dan

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Message-ID: <36E58564.B577A617@which.net>
Date: Tue, 09 Mar 1999 20:32:36 +0000
From: B Blanchard <b.blanchard@which.net>
Subject: Ahem

Good evening and welcome.
Mr Sherwood wrote "Dave Gregory, the only unmarried and childless
member of the band,"

The preferred term is childFREE. Thank you!

BELINDA

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Message-Id: <s6e53d85.009@OAG.STATE.TX.US>
Date: Tue, 09 Mar 1999 14:27:28 -0600
From: "Steve Oleson" <Steve.Oleson@OAG.STATE.TX.US>
Subject: No Language: live

Listening to Transistor Blast, the other day, I was taken back to,
say...around the turn of the last century, when I saw XTC play "No Language
in Our Lungs" live, in Austin.

tweedley-do
tweedley-do
tweedley-do
tweedley-do

(flashback sound effects)

All of us in the throng were pogoing, or otherwise gyrating, to the other
great songs on Black Sea, and having a GREAT time, when XTC slowed the pace
and started No Language. It had never been one of my favorites, liking the
more uptempo sonically oriented songs, as I do, but I was glad to give my
calves (leg muscles, not bovines) a break. Glad I did too, because XTC
picked me up in the palm of their giant velvet hand and transported me
somewhere quite different with "No Language in Our Lungs".
MAGNIFICENT!
What a song! What a band!
When the song was over, and I returned to the planet, I felt calmly,
quietly, blissful.

There are very few bands that can effect people emotionally, especially
emotions like these. I am so glad that they continue to record such
wonderful music.

To XTC: Thanks so much for releasing Transistor Blast! Hearing No Language,
live, brought back a wonderful experience that I had forgotten.

XXOO,
Steve Oleson
Austin, TX

------------------------------

Message-ID: <19990309213134.18287.rocketmail@send1e.yahoomail.com>
Date: Tue, 9 Mar 1999 13:31:34 -0800 (PST)
From: Alex Stein <arctic_moose@yahoo.com>
Subject: Re: Hits

Michael Davies wrote:

>> today, I browsed through the "Billboard Hot 100 Charts of the '80s"
>> book, and if my findings are correct, "The Mayor Of Simpleton" is the
>> one and only XTC single to have cracked the Hot 100 chart in
>> the States (it actually peaked at no. 72 in May 1989).
>> Is that correct ? I find it
>> quite surprising if it is.

> I think "Generals and Majors" was sort of a hit, maybe right before
> the beginning of the decade.  I've heard it on "flashback" radio
> shows more than any other XTC songs anyway. (twice, that is)
> I looked in my book of Billboard hits and it wasn't in there, but
> mine is only Top 40 hits.

There are hits and there are hits.

One of the problems with "oldies" radio stations is that they greatly
exaggerate the popularity of older songs.  If you listen to oldies
radio, you might think that Talking Heads had many hit singles --
after all, they get wide play on oldies and flashback radio formats.
Truth is they rarely charted (certainly in terms of singles), although
their music was widely played on college, progressive, alternative,
AAA etc. stations.

But it's hard to measure a band's popularity or influence merely by
looking at hit singles.  Take the Velvet Underground.  Their early
albums sold almost nothing when first released.  (The story goes,
though, that everyone who bought their first album went on to start a
band).

Alex

PS: I believe DEAR GOD got close to the Top 40 in the US.

------------------------------

Message-ID: <36E5BEA9.57FB@schoollink.net>
Date: Tue, 09 Mar 1999 16:36:57 -0800
From: Dan Phipps <phipps@schoollink.net>
Organization: CIC
Subject: A most sincere "thank you!!!" :-)

Hey all who worship at the "Altar of Andy!" --

I just wanted to take this opportunity
(if Relph will allow it) and express a
most sincere and heart-felt "Thank You!"
to Becki Degregorio in San Francisco for
going the extra mile to get me an auto-
graphed copy of XTC's AV1!!!  Ms. B, you
are indeed THE BEST!!!

This is by far the best XTC release since
"English Settlement" and I am completely
elated that XTC still kick it for this
fan!!  They are the greatest thing to
come out of the music worlds since The
Beatles, and this is the God's honest
truth!!!  :-)  (My $0.02)

Thanks again, Becki D. for what you've
done here.  I won't forget you, no ma'am!

Peace to all in XTC-world...

...and thanks, Relph, for the temporary
use of the soapbox!!

Later all --

/Dan Phipps <phipps@vschoollink.net>

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End of Chalkhills Digest #5-127
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