Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #5-175

         Chalkhills Digest, Volume 5, Number 175

                 Thursday, 15 April 1999

Today's Topics:

               Beatles off the Beach, Boys!
                Do it to me one more time
                   Andy, Jon and Robert
                      smalls change
          Chriping & Cheeping, Waspies & Masters
                  AV1 ; the JC speaks...
Cool. Cool Beans. How hot is that? Phat, what else is there?
              speaking of venting spleens...
             the real pop radio station test
                       Re: Waspies
                        Fossil Fun
                      Re: Overrated
                       Los Surfers
                      Dom in a Trix
            Rubbers, fags, rings & Tony Hadley
               Children's TVand XTC titbits
            A couple sundry things; kinda long
                   Going Canniballistic


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Message-Id: <>
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 00:10:00 -0400
From: David Gershman <>
Subject: Beatles off the Beach, Boys!

I think I just realized what bugs me most about this whole Beach Boys vs.
Beatles debate. It's not so much that I think that the Beatles' repertoire
as a whole is miles beyond that of the Beach Boys (though I do). It's not
that I don't think the Beach Boys have turned out some great work (I love
"Pet Sounds" and the "Smile" bootlegs). It's that the comparison of Beach
Boys vs. Beatles, in the literal sense, just seems off the mark: I can see
the merits of the debate of Brian Wilson being a comparable songwriter to
Paul and/or John, but as a GROUP, the Beach Boys just don't hold a candle
to the Beatles. As someone else more or less pointed out, without Brian to
hold their hands throughout the process, the Beach Boys might as well have
been Jan and Dean. The Beatles, on the other hand, were a more effectively
talented union of songwriters/musicians, three of whom each knew their way
around writing a classic (George less so at the outset). Yes, a great voice
is a talent, but that's where it ends for the non-Brian Beach Boys, I'd
say. I'm sure someone's going to tell me that Carl and Dennis were actually
really good musicians, or someone will point out that Bruce Johnston wrote
"I Write the Songs" for Barry Manilow (because Barry didn't, ironically
enough), but I stand firm: the *bands* just don't compare. Their respective
leaders...okay; the bands as a way.

Dave Gershman


Message-ID: <>
From: "Duncan Kimball" <>
Subject: Do it to me one more time
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 00:14:02 PDT

Dear Chalkalots

Why is it that I keep having to promise NOT to talk about certain topics
anymore? Just a few final addenda to the List, I promise...

* -------------------------------

- Captain Beefheart: Trout Mask Replica

With Special Mentions to:
- The Lonesome Stardust Cowboy (thanks Iain!)
- Wild Man Fisher

* -------------------------------

- Florence Foster Jenkins: The Glory of the Human Voice

No words, no warning can prepare you for it. Put your affairs in order,
kiss your loved ones and proceed to:

where your last act will be to hear a RealAudio file of Florence's
legendary performance of the "Queen of the Night" aria from "The Magic

* -------------------------------

- Human League + Models, Hordern Pavilion, Sydney, 1982

All the horrible fascination of a car wreck. Those (like me) expecting
anything like the band who made "Reproduction" were to be cruelly
disappointed. The dinky synth stylings and bright red plastic pop of this
revamped "Dare"-era League were absolutley no match for brilliant material
and a killer performance from local "alternative" legends Models, then
nearing the peak of their form.

The League were, most grievously of all, nobbled by their alleged "singers"
Joanne Catherall and Susan Ann Sulley. The recently discovered duo - who
made Bananarama sound like the Supremes - were not only total strangers to
any concept of stage craft, but also proved convicingly that they were true
inheritors of the legacy of Florence Foster Jenkins, and therefore less
likely to sing on-key than I was to solve Fermat's Last Theorem. By halfway
the the show people near me were laughing out loud everytime they opened
their mouths.

(Special mention: Sting/Deborah Conway, Sydney Ent. Centre, 199(?)1 - Sting
was great, but Deb, riding high on her wonderful "String Of Pearls" album,
delivered a soaring set and came within a hair's breadth of upstaging the
old trouper)

* --------------------------------

- Midnight Oil + unknown standup comedy act, Hordern Pavilion, ca. 1987

Oh the pain ... Hometown heroes the Oils were undisputed kings of the
scene; the crowd was revved up and ready to rock. For reasons more
mysterious than the far side of the planet Pluto, the promoters decided to
book a "comedy" troupe as the support. They were bloody awful. They didn't
stand a chance. They were heckled, booed and pelted. By half way through
their act they were being drowned out by a chorus-line of young men
standing on the riser near the back of the hall, chanting "FUCK OFF! - FUCK
OFF!" at the tops of their lungs. Just plain cruel.

* --------------------------------


- local Sydney identity "Gypsy Fire" dancing across the stage in a flowing
red dress during Bob Dylan's 1978 Sydney show

- Ricky Lee Jones, Hordern Pav, 1986 - After a magical concert, most of the
audience had gone, house lights were up, but Ricky rewarded the stayers by
returning to the stage, sitting down on the edge with her guitar and
playing a lullaby she had been taught by her dad. Genuine tear-to-eye

* --------------------------------

- Rod Stewart

* --------------------------------


- almost every Australian act since Johnny O'Keefe

* --------------------------------


- Stevie Wonder: I Just Called To Say I Love You

It is an insoluble mystery to me how this great artist, who could compose a
ballad as perfect as "Lately", could come up with such a undiluted piece of
MOR crap.

* --------------------------------


- XTC (you knew I would sneak it in somehow!)
- Elvis Costello
- Joe Camilleri
- Ry Cooder
- Peter Gabriel
- Joni Mitchell

* --------------------------------


- Van Morrison
- Morrissey

Must be something about the "morris..."

* --------------------------------

LIMITED NUMBER OF GOOD IDEAS goes to the following five lucky winners:

- Bryan Ferry/Roxy Music: everything after "Manifesto"? Zzzzzzzzzzz

- Simple Minds: "New Gold Dream"? Nope, just a old, wooden nightmare

- Scritti Politti: we're *still* waiting, Green

- James Brown (but what GOOD ideas they were!)



Date: Tue, 13 Apr 1999 23:36:06 -0800
From: "James  " <>
Message-ID: <>
Subject: Andy, Jon and Robert
Organization: QUALCOMM Eudora Web-Mail  (

>Recently, I began to hear something familiar in the >"do-do-do, do-do"
>chorus at the end of Easter Theatre.  Something about >the soprano and the
>harmonies, not quite Beach-Boys-like...

>Then the thread about ROO's resemblance to Yes began.  >Aha!  and Alas.

Dear All,

Various people have written in to point out the similarities between "River
of Orchids" and the Yes track "We have Heaven".

I can see what you mean, but I am even more struck by the similarity
between the chorus at the end of Easter Theatre (as mentioned above by John
Fulton) and the dulcet tones of Robert Wyatt (circa "Rock Bottom")

Anyone agree?

James T.

"Did you see the match on Saturday? - what a fucking waste of time that
was!" - bloke down the pub


Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 02:41:28 -0700 (PDT)
Message-Id: <v01510104b33a116d56e6@[]>
From: (Mark Fisher)
Subject: smalls change

> "insect-headed worker wife" refers to the curlers in her
>hair, in case we didn't get that one).

This is a good insight. But exactly how does it refer to the curlers in her
hair? Do you mean it looks like she's got insects in her hair, or that the
curlers make a hard insect-like skull for her? Or something else?

Sorry for being dim.

- Mark


Message-ID: <029b01be866a$f29292a0$7da725ca@speedking>
From: "Simon Curtiss" <>
Subject: Chriping & Cheeping, Waspies & Masters
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 23:35:49 +1200

Rich wrote

>Ahem...  KISSOON, Mac and Katie
>Brother and sister from Port-of-Spain, Trinidad.  Moved to
>England in the late 50's. Their "Chirpy Chirpy Cheep Cheep"
>made it's debut on July 24, 1971 and spent 15 weeks on the
>Billboard Charts -- peaking at number 15!

Which country are you talking about?  I just happened to see the Middle of
the Road - Greatest Hits CD (remastered too - WHY! is the only thing that
came to mind)  in town the day before you replied and there is indeed the
ORIGINAL version of Chirpy Chirpy Cheep Cheep. I checked the writing credits
and it's by the same guys who wrote the rest of their 'hits' (ahem! they
certainly escaped my attention). The CD had no more information than that,
althought the photo of the band did prove that they were some very ugly

Covering this song proves that Mac & Katie really did have no taste
whatsoever! Thank goodness they never unleashed on the UK.

>Ahhh -- I am vindicated.  But, somehow, vengeance does not taste as sweet
>as it should!  *sigh*  Simon -- piece of advice, buddy...  Never slight a
>radio-guy!  We're very shy and our fragile egos bruise easily.  If we
>could take criticism, we'd be on TV!

Well I'm wasn't the company music quiz champion for 12 years straight for
nothing either. If saying nope x 6 upsets you then be glad I didn't write
down wot I said when I read your post! :-)

>Thanks for giving some miniscule meaning to an otherwise boring Monday
>afternoon in Ottawa...

Oh dear, I've been there, poor you.


Thank you to Mark Fisher for solving the waspies mystery, all those who
thought it was White Anglo Saxon Protestants a)HUH?  b) that is not a term
used in the UK, I think I only heard when that shite heavy metal band used
it (the one's who had a single called _Fuck Like An Animal_ or something.)


>I was in a mastering studio a few years back working on something unrelated
>when I happened to glance at a box of tapes on the floor. This box
>contained none other than the original masters to every XTC album up till
>Nonsuch. With shaking hands I actually touched the reels of White Music,
>the soundtrack of my own childhood, and gazed over the larger (digital)
>boxes that Todd Rundgren once held in his hands. Just one of life's little

Knowing now about how screwed XTC have been by Virgin, don't you wish you
had 'lost' the box and given the masters to Andy, Colin & Dave!  Or we could
have held them to ransom or... Oh I dunno just something. Chalkhills only
remastered versions of the albums maybe!



Message-ID: <>
From: "jonathan monnickendam" <>
Subject: AV1 ; the JC speaks...
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 06:14:27 PDT

'Gilbert O'Sullivan backed by Pepper era Beatles' that's what the
last weeks' Jewish Chronicle says about AV1

If you want more the review goes like this ......

And then there were two. 24 years since their formation only AP and
CM remain from the origial line-up.

not that you would know listening to AV1.

With orchestrations courtesy of Michael Batt, and amid much studio
trickery these two sound as if they are a cast of thousands.

And the music ? Leaning more to the psychedelic fringes of
Senses....than the jerkier rhythms of D&W the band's first album in &
years is, as ever, unclassifiable.

Green man finds perky Middle Eastern rhythms meeting English folk
music. Knights... is a low key melancholic meander whilst Your
Dictionary comes over like classic slo-mo 10CC pop.

Elsewhere it's more like Gilbert O'Sullivan backed by Pepper era
Beatles on the tongue in cheek Frivolous Tonight.

More than anything though AV1 is the outpouring of two musicians who
have been away too long.

It's good to have their unique - and very English - vision back.

Not bad going as the JC would never be offensive to anyone.

Beach Boys V Beatles
The difficult thing about the Beach Boys is that they were ugly
looking poor white trash with influences that were deeply unhip in
the 60's. You can't get worse than that but I love the beach boys,
all the way from Little Girl I Once Knew to Holland.

As for the Beatles being a Rock and Roll band. I'm not sure, a pop
band which became a rock band more like it. The Beatles playing Roll
over Beethoven on Meet ... is excruciatingly awful.And as for R'n'R
Music it is George Martin's playing that saves it (in the same way as
lennon's great vocal sets it up.


In the Tape deck ; the Damo Suzuki Network at the Garage 9/98.


Message-ID: <>
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 06:26:01 -0700 (PDT)
From: nross <>
Subject: Cool. Cool Beans. How hot is that? Phat, what else is there?

Erich wrote:

>>> IMHO, these singers have at least achieved something which most
of the really popular artists of this decade haven't: having written a
couple of memorable melodies.<<<


>> The music which is coming out of radios nowadays is what
 I would call embarrassing; embarrassing for pure lack
of composing talent (and not likeable at all).<<<

Maybe so.

>>> Lightweight songs like "Mandy" or even "Lady In Red" are, in my
opinion, really nice and well-crafted, but not embarrassing (perhaps a
closer listen to the lyrics might change that).<<<

"Oh Mandy, well you came and you gave without taking, but I sent you
away oh Mandy, well yoou kissed me and stopped me from shaking and
I need you today OOOOOOH MAAAANDY..."  I believe the song was actually
written for his doggy.  It makes it all the more endearing, don't
you think?

>>> I find it odd that obviously there are XTC fans who love songs
like "I Can't Own Her" or "Bungalow", but probably hate, say "Bright
Eyes" by Art Garfunkel or "If You Leave Me Now" by Chicago.<<<

I don't know about Bright eyes... but I LOVE "If you leave me now".

>>> Could this have something to do with our suspicion that XTC are
not very "cool", and that at least we don't want to be caught
listening to something even less "cool"?<<<

Cool! Well, now, let's see here...
I don't agree. I think people will be inconsistent with their taste.
Its the nature of humanity! For example... I like some stupid-lyric
songs and yet I still make fun of songs with stupid lyrics... BECAUSE
they have stupid lyrics (but, the real reason is that I just don't like
the songs I don't like... we all have a NEED to explain things and
have it be logical... but it never is)!!!

Its all opinion, anyways... like, I hate mushrooms... but others like
them and say mushrooms don't seem to have much taste... but to me
they taste horrible, and I like lobster because it has no taste.

okay... I will stop rambling... just wanted to respond to an
interesting post... I stop before I'll start on my theory that fractals
are godlike... uh, too late! :-)


"... It takes all sorts of in and outdoor schooling to
get accustomed to my kind of fooling" -R.Frost

A hero is no braver than an ordinary man, but he is braver
five minutes longer.
-- Ralph Waldo Emerson


Message-ID: <900822C71730D2118D8C00805F65765C4E3710@EINSTEIN>
From: Jill Oleson <>
Subject: speaking of venting spleens...
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 09:02:40 -0500

Steven M. Fish said, "Thanks for giving me the chance to finish
venting my spleen," which reminds me of one of my favorite quotes:

                "If it weren't for our rib cages,
                 there would just be spleens a-go-go."
                                Robyn Hitchcock
                                from the movie "Storefront Hitchcock"

Has anyone outside of Austin, Texas seen this movie yet?  It made
it's world debut here over a year ago and it's fantastic. Yip, yip,

Jill Oleson


Message-ID: <618F91505D89D21185330001FA6A4954464768@HFD-EXCH008>
From: "Witter, Karl F" <>
Subject: the real pop radio station test
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 10:15:29 -0400

Thanks to Dave Gershman and Tyler Hewitt I've now codified my
selection process for finding a real pop radio station. There
are two simple steps:

(Curse you Harrison Sherwood for preempting me! This was
composed last week while your post was on the way.)

1) Call up their request line when they ask for requests. Not
during drive time or 10m before a DJ switch.

2) Ask for "Starry Eyes" by The Records.

If you get more than 2 seconds of silence (or 5 seconds if
another party at the station is consulted) congratulations! You
have fallen into the radio format pit.

Missing the old WBRU,

PS Tune into VH1's "Divas V" Tuesday 4/20 for Cher, Lauren
Bacall, Harvey Firestein and Bea Arthur! Can't wait!


From: "David Nixon" <>
Subject: Re: Waspies
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 06:53:35 +0100
Message-ID: <000701be863b$22e24840$a94b8cd4@default>


Andy is refering to underwear specifically not laundry in general
don't ya think.
Fav XTC song 'Living Through Another Cuba'.....'These things happen
every 20 years or so...We're due for a replay 1998'.... Close try 1999
Andy! (Kosovo)



From: Robert Salvini <>
Message-ID: <000b01be86e9$ce6e7540$3d8c5ed1@nate>
Subject: Fossil Fun
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 22:43:54 -0400

Hey Everyone:
Go to The Chalkhills homepage and look at the picture of the album cover for
If you move your mouse or arrow keys fast up and down to scroll the photo,
the spiral actually swirls.
Cool eh?


Message-Id: <4782AD6ADDBDD2119B570008C75DD5C1022051@MGMTM02>
Subject: Re: Overrated
From: Lawson Dominic <>
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 11:39:05 +0100

Oh Dunksy, you ageing tosser.......

4.	The Style Council

Call me old Mr Historically Accurate, but did anyone EVER over-rate The
Style Council????
Also, you suggest that Paul Weller has lost the plot in recent years. Eh????
Here's how it goes....

The Jam = Great!
The Style Council = Largely Poop!
Paul Weller = Great! (but not quite as great as The Jam).

OK, "Heavy Load" is a bit pants, but "Wild Wood" is fantastic. You daft old

>> And Dom, ther could still be a space for us(the mighty Irons) in the UEFA
cup, but it involves Man Utd being European champs. Can you live with this?

In a word, YES!!!!!! I loathe "the scum" as much as most non-Man City fans,
but having been starved of even a faint glimmer of glory in all the twenty
years I've been a Hammers supporter I would, albeit reluctantly, volunteer
to be sodomized by a rhino if it meant that we got a taste of European
action. Very sad, but then that's the wonders of footie for you. I wonder
how our US pals would cope with having real sport to watch.....the mind
boggles! Ooh Dom, you little tinker!

>> Are you kidding? They are one of the best bands of the 90's. "Radiator"
is a fantastic record. SFA are one of the few bands who owe XTC a debt (and
SFA's second album is better than XTC's second album...<controv>)

Controv? Certainly not. I agree 100%. "Radiator" fantastic, and miles better
than "Go 2". Not sure if SFA actually resemble XTC in any way, but there are
definitely some shared influences in there.....

Re: Molly's Top 5 Singles

>>5.    Jump - XTC

You'll be thinking of Van Halen or the Pointer Sisters, I suspect. Surely
"Jump" was a b-side or something similar?

>> I sent in my list of personal musical likes/dislikes, but forgot to
mention who I would most like to kick:
There are so many good choices, but I think I would settle for any of the
members of Hanson.

Now this I find a bit weird. Yes, teenybopper music is utterly vile and in
most cases entirely bereft of creative significance or value. However, it's
NOT BLOODY AIMED AT US!!!!! Unless there are far more fourteen year old
girls on the list, I would be surprised if record companies are falling over
themselves to prise your last few pennies from your pockets in order to buy
a fucking B*witched record. You're not supposed to understand, YOU'RE TOO

Someone once pointed out that slagging off Phil Collins is like kicking a
cripple (or similar - don't tell me, cripple is bad word too? Well boo
hoo!). I can't say I agree - it's actually a very popular sport in this
country - but slagging off boy bands and teeny drivel is like criticizing
socialism when you live in a right-wing country with no history of left-wing
politics. So there. Maybe I could have found a more light-hearted analogy,
but you get the general idea....Yes, all those records suck the thin, brown
gruel from an ocelot's colon, but if I was young, pretty and capable of
dancing without looking like Hunter S. Thompson on a bad day I would gladly
sell a kidney to swap with Hanson. They are all girls though, aren't they?

Molly confused the hell out of me....

>> The person interviewing the editor ask why they ask about why Spandau
Ballet is so big.

They are? AAARRRRGGGGHHHH!!!!! The 80s are starting again!!!!!

(NB - Spandau Ballet haven't released a record for the best part of a
decade, were appalling at the time, never "big" in the recognized sense of
the word and are not even fondly remembered in a "weren't the 80s so bad
they were good" kind of way. Incidentally, the 80s were so bad they were
awful, and Spandau Sodding Ballet didn't help. Poo Romantic, more like...)

BTW, why do Americans insist on saying that, for instance, Kajagoogoo is a
pile of cack, rather than Kajagoogoo are a pile of cack? This has always
irritated me because apart from the grammatical foolishness of it all, it
always made me visualize bands (and not Kajagoogoo, thankfully) as single,
lumbering dinosaur-like entities. Hey man, Metallica is on tour! No, you
fuckwit, they are on tour. Two nations separated by a common language? Two
nations separated by American English, more like.

And no, I'm not being entirely serious. Can I stop pointing this out now?

Re: Beach Boys Vs Beatles -
Well, I've had enough. Let's just say that The Beatles were miles better and
leave it at that shall we?

>> Most people aren't familiar with the great things Brian did in 1966.
We are now, trust me.

>> How about whacky band names?(real bands only)

OK, how about The Amazing Roy North Penis Band? Do I win?



Message-ID: <>
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 10:26:38 +0100
From: chris vreeland <>
Organization: Vreeland Graphics
Subject: Los Surfers

Just a quick note-
	I saw the Latin Playboys here in Austin last frigday night, and would
highly reccommend this show to all the pro-Mitch Froom, Los Lobos fans
on the list. David Hidalgo played guitar, violin, cello, and pecussion,
Mitch Froom played keyboards and sundry noises, including (I think) an
actual mellotron, Tchad Blake played bass and ran a weird console that I
think was largely a bank of samples or tapes. I forget the names of the
other musicians, but sue me. Being totally unfamilliar with their
recorder work, I decline to submit an actual review, but I was
personally quite impressed. The best analogy I can summon is The
Butthole Surfers meet Santana. (and I mean that in a good way)

XTC content: The Greenman Volume Enhancement Phenomenon. (GVEP)

No matter how loud I set my stereo when I put on Apple Venus, I MUST
turn it up when it Greenman starts. It is an uncontrollable urge,
bordering on hipnosis.

Chris "kickandrewloydwebberagainforme" Vreeland


Message-ID: <>
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 08:30:41 -0700 (PDT)
From: Chris Desmond <>
Subject: Dom in a Trix

Dom, Dom, Dom, you impish simp.

>From: Lawson Dominic <>
>OK, calm down for Ozzy's sake. Before you all start jumping on Harrison's
>plum collection, just a couple of points....
>(i)	Chris was writing out of his cock.

That sounds incredibly painful...if you yourself can do that, you might
want to see a doctor about it. Not to mention that speaking out of your
arse problem you seem to be having.

>(ii)	If you don't like what you read in Chalkhills, why bother
pointing it out to those of us who obviously do?

Hey, I yawned and translated it into the typewritten word. Sorry. Sue
me. Wake me up if you have to. But I won't be stomped on like a bug on
the undershoe of life, I tell you! You'll never get away with it!

>Much as it pains me to stick up for the curmudgeonly old gnat-fucker

Ahhh...such sweetness abounds.

>I'm sure that's about the nicest thing I've said about him in the
digest), I'm with Mr S on this one.

Well, as they say: with friends like you...

Hey Dom! You want some XTC content? I'll give you some XTC content!
It's right here in the mouth of this here Great White Shark...go ahead,
look inside. Yes, that's it...just a liiittle farther in. There you go,
at the back of the oral cavity -- can you read it? SNAP! CRUNCH! Ha

Okay, where was I? Oh yes, XTC. Here's a morsel for the rest of you to
chomp on, in time with yonder shark: I LOVE "Harvest Festival," but
does anyone else have the song "Hitchin' a Ride" (by Vanity Fair, I
believe) brought to mind when the recorder comes in? I do.



Message-Id: <>
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 17:35:34 +0100
From: Philip Lawes <>
Subject: Rubbers, fags, rings & Tony Hadley

>Que? In American please? :) Did you lose control because of some sinister
>Brit/Yank translation roadbump?  I know it was perhaps a little
>conversational in tone but otherwise, I couldn't find anything too freaky
>in what I said.  Perhaps it was the "blew off" thing--maybe that means
>something in Brit that I'm unfortunately ignorant of but that I can
>certainly imagine.  Please enlighten.

Sorry Kristen, reading it again I posted before thinking and it sounds a
bit snidey, so I apologise.  But you're probably imagining the right
thing .

Mind you there's been a couple of times that I've raised an eyebrow
while reading the list.  I remember a while back somebody saying that
they thought an album they disliked "blows goats". (?).  There are a
whole load of linguistic pitfalls that Anglo-American conversation can
fall into.  If, for example, you go into a British chemist and ask for a
rubber you'll be directed to the stationery department.  And in the
office where I work you have to go outside if you have to take a suck on
a fag.  (And remember the whole 'wanker' debate from a while back).
Similarly I remember watching an 'Ironman' American kiddi-cartoon on
Saturday morning BBC a few months ago (with the kids you understand) in
which Ironman has his deadly enemy the Mandarin surrounded in a bunker
by his crew of super-buddies.  The Mandarin, who draws his evil power
from his magic rings, responded with "Withdraw Ironman, or you will feel
the power of my ring!".  Hmmm.

XTC content, well it must be subliminal.  No, hang on a minute*

Molly wrote

>I just read this with the interviewer of Lexicon.  The person
>interviewing the editor ask why they ask about why Spandau Ballet is so
>big.  I guess this person asks the celebrities.  Well this is what they
>said about when they asked Andy Partridge.

><< No one has been upset except for Andy Partridge (XTC). I think I opened
>a vein with the question. I dunno, maybe Spandau Ballet killed XTC's
>dog. >>

>I just thought I would bring this up to you people.

Well, the Partridge-free 'Never Mind the Buzzcocks' featured Bobby Davro
- well known rent-a-celeb who would *never* get on NMTB unless he
happened to be hanging around the BBC canteen when somebody else (Mr. P
maybe?) cancelled at the last minute.  And who would have been Andy's
fellow team member?  None other than Tony 'foghorn' Hadley, late of the
Spands.  Maybe the producer was worried he'd have to get the Gerry
Springer type bouncers with headphones in if they both tried to sit
behind the same desk.  I think we should be told.



Message-ID: <000f01be858c$ce4e34a0$bc3963c3@vucqprlj>
From: "David Seddon" <>
Subject: Children's TVand XTC titbits
Date: Tue, 13 Apr 1999 10:05:39 +0100

Ah the nostalgia!

Peter Williams said
"This is an easy one, W.A.S.P. = World Aquanaut Security Patrol, all fans of
Troy Tempest, Phones, Marina and Stingray will know this one."

Yeah, I guess I was in love with Aqua Marina when I was about 10!  Anything
can happen in the next......wait......was it 5 minutes or ten?  Still say
it's about lacy lingerie, tho'!!
My favourite children's tv prog (if you can call it that) was Robinson
Crusoe, in b+w.  I used to watch it religiously every summer holiday and for
years I wanted to get hold of a copy of the music.  Talking of great
melodies!!  Wow that one gets to me every time.  I finally got the CD and I
play it regularly.  Not as much as XTC, but QAL.
I finally got me mitts on the videos at Christmas and converted my wife to
it, too.  She loved it.  Does anyone else remember this programme fondly?
Come on you thirty somethings of England!
Didn't Andy Partridge go on about the actor (Robert Hoffmann) and the show,
too: in the Black Sea tour notes.  Think I read this on the Limelight pages,
and was jolly pleased!  Great to know that he was into the stuff too.  I
think that the USA broadcast it too.  Anyway, if you remember it,  there is
a web page dedicated to it:

De De De Dee, De Dum.  De De De Dee, De De Ditty Dum.

"Humming old Children's tv tunes is the first sign of nostalgipation."


Message-ID: <697A4CA51395D111A658AA0004005806E12EE1@NT6>
From: "Wiencek, Dan" <>
Subject: A couple sundry things; kinda long
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 12:57:32 -0500

Molly just thought she would bring this up with us:

I just read this with the interviewer of Lexicon.  The person
interviewing the editor ask why they ask about why Spandau Ballet is so
big.  I guess this person asks the celebrities.  Well this is what they
said about when they asked Andy Partridge.

<< No one has been upset except for Andy Partridge (XTC). I think I opened
a vein with the question. I dunno, maybe Spandau Ballet killed XTC's
dog. >>

I sorta get the quote, but that introductory paragraph was impenetrable.
Anyone care to translate, or can Molly take another stab at it?  Who are all
those "theys"?  Are "the editor" and "the interviewer" the same person?  And
who is the mysterious "this person" (not to be confused, hopefully, with
"This Boy")?  I am confused.

Erich Sellheim then said:

I was amazed at the mass of songs I considered to be okay or even pretty
good (and not ridiculous at all) to be found in the "embarrassing songs"
section, so I'd like to know if this may be due to the lyrics; as someone
who doesn't speak English as first language, it's pretty easy for me to
ignore lyrics while listening to music.  <remainder of thought-provoking
post snipped>

I thought this an extremely good point, but only to a point (ba-dum bum).
As one who values melody most highly, and who likes a lot of
cringe-inducing (but nevertheless extremely melodic) songs, I have slowly
begun to discover that not all melodies are created equal, and that, while
both Andy Partridge and, say, Barry Manilow are very melodic songwriters,
their melodies say different things: they express different moods, they
reveal different attitudes and sensibilities.  These judgments are
obviously subjective, but not entirely so.

Example: If you listen to the lyrics of the Beach Boys' "California Girls,"
you might conclude from them that the song is an amiable, harmless little
ode to all the girls one is able to meet and, by extension, possibly have
sex with, esp. if you're a rock star (this is obviously what David Lee Roth
had in mind when he covered the song).  In that sense, it's pretty much in
line with the familiar Beach Boys surf-and-sun image.  But really listen to
the melody, and the song's meaning expands.

Listen to how the introductory guitar theme, that gently descending passage
countered with (I'm guessing) keys or horns, establishes a mood of longing,
of nostalgic looking back, as though you're being carried back with the
singer into his own memories.  This is mirrored in the chords of the
chorus, which also descend before coming to rest on that final, prolonged
"girrrrls ...".  The verse is a mix, with optimism kind of jostling with
regret; the chord that starts the third bar ("I really =>dig<= those styles
they wear") introduces tension that is resolved, or at least eased, at the
end of the progression.  And the chiming interlude between the last chorus
and the coda ... well, I won't presume to say exactly what it means, but
the way it momentarily halts the song further lends to the dream-like
quality of the piece as a whole; once you hear that, you know you haven't
been listening to a kind of field guide to American girls.  The song is
about a state of mind, of recognizing that which made/makes you happy and
cherishing it, either in memory or in the present tense.

(I hope the musicologists out there will forgive my imprecision ... I'm not
trained in music and have only my subjective impressions to go on, which I
communicate through this clumsy medium of words ...)

Anyway, to compare that to another ballad I heard recently: my cousin
recently got married, and the song she and her husband chose for their
first dance was Lloyd Weber's "All I Ask of You" from Phantom.  I went
through a period a few years back of kinda being into Lloyd Weber's stuff,
but hearing this song made me realize, once and for all, why he's so
godawful.  His melodies are superficially pretty but they have nothing
underpinning them, and so his songs communicate through bang and flash: he
comes up with a few themes for each project he does and then he clobbers
you with them, piling on the strings and horns and shaking you by the spine
as though to say "This is *beautiful*, dammit!"  In a simpler arrangement,
written by someone with passion and the ability to communicate it, All I
Ask of You might be a decent song.  As it is, I find it pretty horrid.
There isn't a moment of subtlety in the song, or for that matter in most of
the Lloyd Weber canon, which goes a considerable way toward explaining his

So, to wrap up, I think that's why XTC fans who like Bungalow (though many
don't, and Bungalow is meant to be tongue-in-cheek anyway) can honestly say
they hate Andrew Lloyd Weber, or Barry Manilow or whoever.  It's not enough
to write a good melody.  As in any art, you have to have something to say.

(sorry to carry on at such length ...)
Dan Wiencek
American Academy
of Orthopaedic Surgeons


Message-Id: <>
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 11:08:45 -0700
From: "Dane Pereslete" <>
Subject: Going Canniballistic


Erich Sellheim <> said:

>while I think that "I Eat Cannibals"
>is by Toto Nuelo (or something similar).

Pretty close!  interestingly enough *Toto Coelo* got into legal
wrangling with the rock group Toto over the use of that name,
and cosequently the rest of their catalogue was reissued with
with the new name *Total Coelo* (well - at least here in the US -
many thanks to my friend Ron Ono for that trivia).

OK! 'nuff on this topic,


Logging in from beautiful Glendale, CA  USA
"Waiting for AV2"  -or-


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