Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #5-229

         Chalkhills Digest, Volume 5, Number 229

                   Tuesday, 6 July 1999

Today's Topics:

                   Re: English Sediment
           Greenman: Single Sleeve Speculation
              Some New Releases to Check Out
                      Re: Fred Smith
                Salute to The Old Air Ace
               re: the "New Single" dilemma
                 Still Looking for Erica
                     Hello everyone !
                       XTC T-Shirt
               Alfie declares Independence
                       Bags Of Fun
                  The Hand That Feeds Us
                    Random brainwaves
                    Am I the only one?
                re: Some Assembly Required
                  original version.....
                Re: Internet Music Trends
                   Hey..great threads!
                   Chord/Tablature Help


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Liberated from sex organs and brown, black, white skin.


Message-ID: <>
Date: Fri, 02 Jul 1999 08:40:20 -0700
Subject: Re: English Sediment

d. wrzezinski wrote:
>Anyone want to argue this with me?
>Really.  I'd love to hear your reasons why you all think
>that English Settlemtent is such a great album.

if you have to ask, then you wouldn't understand.

it isn't even winter
but i'm freezing freezing,


Message-Id: <>
From: Janis VanCourt <>
Subject: Greenman: Single Sleeve Speculation
Date: Fri, 2 Jul 1999 13:38:43 -0400

Unlike at least one other Chalkie here, I personally have been thrilled and
delighted by the packaging *and* the content of the "Easter Theatre" and
"I'd Like That" singles.  The sleeve art is just beautiful, and I dearly
hope that the feather motif is carried through for the "Greenman" single,

Question:  What image do you all suppose might appear on the sleeve art?  I
suppose they could just use a traditional green man carving or sculpture
against the peacock feather, but that would be kind of disappointing to me;
the previous two sleeves featured a simple object from nature, and I'd hate
to see those little still-lifes disrupted by a face.  What I'd really love
to see against the feather, and what I think would convey the sense of the
song well, is a pine cone.  Apart from being interesting and beautiful, a
pine cone would evoke the image of the forest lord as well as tie in with
the "oak and pine" lyric.

I can't wait to find out.  Hope our Brit contingent will keep us informed.



Message-ID: <>
Date: Fri, 2 Jul 1999 19:52:41 EDT
Subject: Some New Releases to Check Out

After a recent music buying binge, I'm glad to report general happiness with
the following purchases; mainly, I'm listing them here because I think that
XTC fans (with more sophisticated ears than, say, your average "Rancid" fan
;-)) might want to investigate these sounds:

THE CAST - "Beat Mama"...a CD single from the "Magic Hour" album, the latest
from The Cast, a band that I've followed mainly because I loved The La's. I
recall Dave Gregory mentioned really liking The La's album.

"Beat Mama" is a terrific, uptempo number!

But now I'm wondering whether the rest of "Magic Hour" is any good. NME
didn't give it a rave review, saying "we've heard it all before," but then
again I think they are wrong about "Beat Mama" anyway. Why is the British
musical press so tough on some of its best acts? (If anyone out in
Chalkland owns Magic Hour, drop me a line.) The other two songs on this
single sound like vintage Blur.

DUNCAN SHEIK - "Humming"...stronger and a looser approach than on his debut
album. "Bite Your Tongue," "Varying Degrees of Con-Artistry," and "That
Says It All." I have to credit XTC for my appreciation of the arrangement
of songs, and various sounds playing off other sounds - not merely just a
"cranking up" of volume, but various tones playing off each other. God, I'm
old, I'm listening to Duncan Sheik! :-)

ECHO & THE BUNNYMEN - "What Are You Going to Do With Your Life?"
impressive album! They haven't sounded this good since 1984's "Ocean Rain."
And working with The London Symphony Orchestra, it's tempting to draw
parallels to AV, Volume 1. Many may want to throw red ripe tomatoes at me
for stating this, but I think The Bunnymen are more successful than XTC in
retaining their intact pop unit "sound" even though working with a full

TAXIRIDE - "Imaginate" - This one is currently at the Tower listening
stations. If you must check out only one track, let it be "Ice Cream."
Check out some other tracks, too, these guys are good.



Message-ID: <>
Date: Fri, 2 Jul 1999 22:17:27 EDT
Subject: LSD

>Fasting, yoga, and other ascetic practices are
>also said to bring about intense "psychedelic"/expanded consciousness
>experiences, and we all know that the founders of most of the world's
>major religions fasted for periods of 40 days or longer prior to
>receiving revelations.  I don't mean that statement as a knock on
>religion, I'm just saying, that's how it is...These days, we have LSD,
>tho, so those of us who want to talk to God can do so for $5-$10 and
>don't have to hang upside down in wells, live inside a mountain,or eat
>grasshoppers in the desert.
	I'd better shut up now!
>Have a groovy day,

  As one who's tried both LSD and yoga, fasting and other more controllable
means of expanding the mind, I can honestly say doing it yourself is far
more rewarding than having some chemical do it for you. However, I don't
regret trying LSD in my college days in the early 80's, it showed me that
certain things are possible with the human mind and spirit that I would not
have believed had I not gone that route. LSD and other psychedelic
experiences showed me the way, and I said "thank you, I'll walk the rest of
the way." LSD is like taking a helicopter to the top of a mountain; you may
see more of the mountain in a short period of time, but you can't land, and
you have to come back down sometime. Climbing the mountain yourself is so
much more rewarding, but admittedly harder work. Isn't the work what makes
it rewarding, though?  And remember to push your car from the road! :-)



Message-ID: <>
Date: Fri, 2 Jul 1999 22:17:40 EDT
Subject: Re: Fred Smith

>George Martin, in his Seminole book "All You Need Is Ears," describeth it
>thus (p. 154):

>   [Double-tracking] was something we found out by ourselves, by
>   experiment.  We discovered that the double-tracking of voices or
>   instruments gave them a different sound. In other words, if you record
>   Fred Smith singing a song, and then re-record him singing the same song
>   in the same way in time with his first recording, it will be different
>   from having two Fred Smiths, identical in every way, singing at the same
>   time.

  For that matter, you could have Fred Smith of the MC5 on guitar(oh wait,
he's dead. damn...), Fred Smith of Television on bass, Fred Smith from John
Cale's Fear album on drums, and Fred Smith of the 70;s R&B band Brick on
keyboards and have a whole band of Fred Smiths.



Message-ID: <>
From: damian marley <>
Subject: Colin
Date: Sat, 03 Jul 1999 01:13:12 PDT


Andy writes most of the songs, and he is a genius.  Colin is also a genius.
Not as many songs, but they're all so good!!!  So here's a little message
about Colin.

I made an XTC tape for my friend and his wife.  I called side A "Colin" and
side B "Andy".  Chuck a bunch of those Colin songs together, and you really
have something!!!

Like many Chalkhillers, the album which turned me into an XTC xtrovert was
"Skylarking", and it is upon that album that Colin goes beserk with no less
than 5 tracks.  I think "Sacrificial Bonfire" is one of the band's best
songs - "reign over good - banish the bad".

Andy said in an interview that he (an indoors person) writes songs about
outdoor things, while Colin (an outdoors person) writes songs about indoors
things.  Hence "Bungalow", "Dying", "Fruit Nut", "My Bird Performs",
"Washaway", "Frivolous Tonight".  Colin's ON TO SOMETHING with these songs;
he's driven to write about detail, simplicity, the mundane, all with a
sense of sadness among the satire.  These are GREAT SONGS.

My job requires me to drive around Australia in rental cars; so I always
bring along my XTC tapes, and off I go, singing along in my pissweak voice,
but no-one can hear me, not even myself, as Colin and Andy drown out my
attempts.  But my vocal chords and lungs are working away, joining in with
the vibrations.  "Easter Theatre" is a great one to sing along to - try it
if you already haven't.

Can't bloody wait for "Apple Venus Vol. 2".  It's the 4th big cultural
event for me in 1999/2000, after "Apple Venus Vol. 1", "Star Wars Episode
1", "Eyes Wide Shut".  Bring it on, boys.

"When it rains it rains all the colours in my paintbox" - Andy



Message-Id: <v03102800b3a3578ceca5@[]>
Date: Sat, 3 Jul 1999 00:23:23 -0700
From: Richard Pedretti-Allen <>
Subject: Salute to The Old Air Ace

(Scroll Down!  Long, soporific, nostalgic post about Detroit, of all

A bit regional here but...

Wesley posted about Dave Dixon's demise.  Wesley and J.D. SMX have had some
edialogue with me about Detroit and I thank them for that.

I have fond memories of when Bookies was considered (albeit by less than
totally cool sources) as the "premier punk club in the United States" circa
1978... grainy, slightly hazy memories of a television show called "Detroit
Tubeworks" of live, local concert footage that exposed me to a bunch of new
material circa 1968/9?...  a radio station organized "kite-in" (W4?) on
Belle Isle (it rained and everyone simply got stoned in their cars) circa
1975 and Dave Dixon, et al, at WABX.

It was probably only six or seven years ago that I felt REALLY dopey about
keeping my "WABX Air Aces" T-shirt and it hit the rag bin (still in good
shape but wouldn't fit me anymore anyway).  The hat with the pig came later
with a logo knicked from the Blodwyn Pig LP.

Later years, I found Dave on WDET where I listened to Mike Halloran (big
XTC fan) doing a punk and new wave showed entitled "Radios In Motion" and
Judy Adams' "Morphogenesis" program (largely responsible for opening my
ears to so much material).  I still have cassette tapes of several shows
somewhere around here.  I think it's time to dig them up.

Thank you Wesley for the posting.  I know that it probably doesn't seem XTC
related but it's like tracing your geneology... the links that appear can
provide a depth of feeling that can only be felt and not described (yeah,
yeah... HARRISON could probably describe).

Though I'm positive that Detroit conjures abhorent images in many minds,
the value of growing up in the Motown era and then hitting the clubs in
that post-Motown musical climate with The Plugs, The Motor City Mutants,
The Cubes, Exotic Surgery, The 3D Invisibles, Jerry Vile and The Boners,
Mr. Unique and The Liesure Suits, Art In America, The Jelly and so many
that I can't remember off the top of my head (and XTC at the Michigan
Theatre, which I missed) and so many other local bands in places like
Bookie's Club 870, Lili's and The Red Carpet... whew... the energy was
inspiring.  ...oh... wait... that conjures abhorent images in MY mind.  BUT
WHAT GREAT ABHORENT IMAGES!  I wish you were there to see and feel it.

Yeah, some of it, in retrospect was pretty lame, but it was the moment, the
energy (or lack thereof), the attire (or lack thereof), the cross-culture
interest (or lack thereof), the "FUCK DEMOGRAPHICS, LET'S DANCE!" attitude.

I feel old now.

I know it wasn't a singular thing and that there were plenty of important
musical things going on in many cities around the world but... those were
heady times and Detroit had so much going on in so many genres that one was
flummoxed about an appropriate hairstyle.

Just as XTC have spent so much time at the outer edge, so did the early FM
"radio personalities" and almost every band in Detroit in the 70's.  There
were a few exceptions that signed record deals but most were in the more
"rock" vein like The Romantics, 707, Adrenelin, Ted Nugent (oooh, let me
detail the local pride), Bob Seger (like a @#*%$&! rock, Bob) and Art In
America, but most stiffed.  That's NOTHING compared to what was going on in
the locals clubs.

Dream well, Dave Dixon, and thanks.  Man, I really hate mortality
references but it brought back a lot of big fun times.

Richard "Let's Put The FUN Back In FUNeral!" Pedretti-Allen


Date: Sat, 3 Jul 1999 20:40:14 -0700 (PDT)
From: Benjamin Lukoff <>
Subject: re: the "New Single" dilemma
Message-ID: <>

 "Aaron Pastula" <> wrote:
> What?!  What other band do you know that has ever put an explanation of how
> their song was written on a single (or has songs even *worth* explaining,
> but that's another issue...)?!  This is as close as 99.999% of us will get
> to sitting down with Andy and getting a tour of his music...sounds pretty
> fun to me, and I personally got them solely to hear the explanation track.
> Sure, you can't necessarily listen to it over and over again, but still...I
> think it's a pretty novel idea, and certainly one of value.

Not all *that* novel..."How Easter Theatre Came To Be" showed Andy doing
his impression of Paul McCartney on "Oobu Joobu"...interesting listening
in each case, but I wished for real B-sides to the Flaming Pie singles
(like Paul had for his singles from Off the Ground) just like I wished for
real B-sides to the Apple Venus ones.

Did anyone else notice how much Andy was acting like Paul on "How Easter
Theatre Came To Be", or do all musicians get like that when they are
explaining their songs?

Benjamin Lukoff
"Trees like me weren't meant to live if all this world can give
 is pollution and slow death"
     - Brian Wilson & Jack Rieley


Date: Sun, 4 Jul 1999 00:12:27 -0400
Subject: Still Looking for Erica
Message-ID: <>

I've been searching and searching for her on Saturday Night Fever and I
still can't find her.  She's a lucky woman to be with Andy. :)



Message-ID: <>
Date: Sat, 3 Jul 1999 22:42:22 -0700 (PDT)
From: Susperia Five <>
Subject: Hello everyone !

I just wanted to introduce myself, being new to the list and all.  I'm
Angelina and have been an XTC fan since 1987 when I came to know their
music by way of the Dukes of Stratosphear.  Strange, I know, but I was
in a psychedelic phase at the time.  I am also a rabid Barry Andrews
and Shriekback fan, so please don't hurt me! :)  I'm hoping there are
more on the list who love both camps as it were.  I'm looking forward
to the discussions here.
Peace and Victory,

The value of anything is how much it hurts ~~ Shriekback


Message-ID: <>
Date: Sun, 04 Jul 1999 09:12:19 +0100
From: B Blanchard <>
Subject: XTC T-Shirt

1)     I just spent three happy days in Amsterdam wearing my all
new small (phew!) black Phil Corless produced gorgeous XTC Apple
Venus T-Shirt.
2)     People stopped me in the street!
The above two statements are not at all related.


Message-ID: <002001bec60a$e1decc00$105eac3e@vucqprlj>
From: "David Seddon" <>
Subject: Alfie declares Independence
Date: Sun, 4 Jul 1999 11:39:38 +0100

Remember the baby I saw move for the first time whilst listening to
Helicopter?   Well, I thought that some Chalkhillians might like to know
that he was born last night (4th July) at 03:40.  Mother and baby are fine
and father is glowing with pride.

Alfie (Alfred John) Seddon was born 7lbs 6oz and has lots of dark hair,
which apparently I did too when I was born.

Soon have him humming along to XTC and hopefully one day he'll want to play
a musical instrument.

David S


Message-Id: <>
From: "Mark Strijbos" <>
Date: Sun, 4 Jul 1999 18:48:20 +0200
Subject: Bags Of Fun

Dear Chalkers,

this message is for serious xtc collectors only!

i've recently "discovered" another variation on an all too familar
theme... yet another edition of the English Settlement album.
There appear to be two different editions of the inner sleeve from the
German single LP version (Virgin Ariola 204 446-320).

Also came across a first edition Go 2 album that looked really awful
except for the original record bag that was hand-stamped in red ink
with the following text:

    this is an inner sleeve
	or bag for an album
	by XTC called Go 2
   with a catalogue number
		of V2108

surf to for some
scans of the above...

yours in xtc,

Mark Strijbos at The Little Lighthouse


Message-Id: <>
From: "Mark Strijbos" <>
Date: Sun, 4 Jul 1999 18:48:20 +0200
Subject: The Hand That Feeds Us

Dear Chalkers,

Dunks said this about the AV singles:

> >Cute package, I guess, but
> >does it really represent the sort of value and fun XTC singles used to
> >provide? Not really.

Sorry?  Of course it does!
Honestly, what is there to complain about?

The songs are great, both the demo versions and the talks are
enlightening end very informative (not to mention entertaining!)
Their packaging is beautiful, extremely stylish and in line with the
album design. the handwritten and printed lyrics are a great plus for
the serious XTC scholar.

And don't forget: there are no 'extra bonus tracks' available right
now; all the material that was recorded and finished during the AV1
sessions is already on the album.

But what really should convince you to get these singles is the fact
that they are by XTC. I mean, if their fans aint gonna buy their
product who will?

yours in xtc,

Mark Strijbos at The Little Lighthouse


Message-ID: <>
From: Duncan Kimball <>
Subject: Random brainwaves
Date: Sun, 04 Jul 1999 17:48:19 PDT


Re; the query about Apple Venus, here are a few scattered thoughts about
the meaning/s of the title, which I jotted down some time ago:


- suggests alternating principal themes of nature & love

- cycles of the seasons and time reflected in alternating themes of songs

- Shakespearean reference ? "If music be the food of love..."


- nature; goodness; food; nourishment; staple European seasonal fruit
(which can also be made into alcoholic cider); flowers in spring, fruit
falls in autumn

- "American as apple pie" (Andy's new partner Erica Wexler is American)

- associations with school and childhood - "apple for the teacher"

- BIBLICAL: temptation, knowledge - Eve; conventionally used as the
biblical Fruit of the Tree of Knowledge (of Good and Evil); in Genesis, Eve
is tempted to eat of The Fruit by the Serpent / Devil; she in turn tempts
Adam; they eat and they fall from Grace, and are cast out of Eden

- GREEK MYTH: apple=discord; Helen of Troy; in Greek myth a golden apple -
the Apple of Discord is the object given to Paris by Eris (Strife), which
he is to present to his choice of the most beautiful of the Olypmian
goddesses; his choice of Aphrodite offends Hera and Athena and is the cause
of the Trojan War

- BEATLES - Apple was the Beatles record label, established in 1968


- MYTHICAL - goddess of love (Roman); equivalent to Aphrodite (Greek) and
Isis (Egyptian); linked to /derived from ancient worship of Earth Mother;
focus of important cults in ancient world; (of Isis etc) Venus cults
co-opted into early Christian church through development of the cult of the
Virgin Mary

- morning / evening star, depending on season; brightest object in the sky
other than the moon and usually the first/last celestial object visiable
after sunset/before sunrise;

- wishing: "first star I see tonight"

- seasonal marker: orbit of planet Venus was an vital indicator of seasonal
changes; many cultures had crucial rituals and religious activities
associated with the rising of Venus at the spring and autumn equinox, and
built elalborate structures (e.g. Stonehenge) with sighting points to mark
the rising/setting of Venus at these times

- BEATLES: possible ref. to McCartney's 1974 solo album titled "Venus and

As I said, just stray thoughts, but I perhaps this will spark a few more



Message-ID: <>
From: garret harkawik <>
Subject: Am I the only one?
Date: Sun, 04 Jul 1999 21:29:15 EDT

Am I the only 13-year old xtc fan in the world?  It seems that way.


Date: 5 Jul 99 11:23:19 AES
Subject: re: Some Assembly Required
Message-ID: <>

Todd B ~
Thanx for the tip about collaborations with Tony Levin.  Actually, the
notion of Andy working with Levin is not such a stretch - he's already done
it.  You can hear Andy skanking along on rhythm guitar on a couple of songs
on Joan Armatrading's "Walk Under Ladders".  And, yep, there's Tony on

Of course, Dave's playing graces the "melting face" Peter Gabriel album
too.  Who's on bass?

And I'm sure you yourself, Todd, would make a most suitable sticksman!



Message-ID: <>
Date: Mon, 05 Jul 1999 08:23:11 -0700
From: "Brent Dougans" <>
Subject: original version.....

Daniel Wrzesinski wrote:

"My favorite song is "Leisure" which didn't even appear on the original
version.  So my favorite original version song would have to be "Ball and
 Does anyone else agree with me on this?!?!"

What a silly bunt...... The original version of English Settlement was the
double LP in places like Canada and the UK and most everywhere
else.. Virgin / Epic in the US 'pre-packaged' the 2 LPs worth of music into
one LP.  I would assume they thought no-one would fork out the bucks for a
double LP or weren't willing to make the effort to release the full set..
Yes, Canada did eventually offer a single LP of 'English Settlement' as
well.  Must've been some pressure from down south or
something. Conformity......

The band is from the UK so I would say the official release of English
Settlement would be the UK issue which was 2 solid albums of great
music. No single LP version out of the UK.....

Just the facts.


yes I enjoy 'English Settlement' -  all of it and have since it's release.


Message-ID: <>
From: Bob Crain <>
Subject: Re: Internet Music Trends
Date: Mon, 05 Jul 1999 09:35:39 PDT

The estimable Todd Bernhardt (always on top of things, just ask his his
wife, he doesn't have three kids for nothing), made some excellent points
about the probable trend of singles being the dominant form in the
downloadable music paradigm (when asked what paradigms were, I believe Dan
Quayle answered, "Twenty cents.")  I wish to respond to his question,

>This change, like so many others engendered by digital technology, >is
>inevitable. The question, I suppose, is how do we -- both as fans of
>intelligent music and as musicians (because many of us here are)
> >approach/deal with this change?

I am struck by this scenario's resemblance to the popular music market of
the mid-1960's, where the top artists strove to put as many single-worthy
songs as possible on their albums (Beatles, Stones, Kinks, Beach Boys, Moby
Grape, and so forth).  At the same time, singles were viewed much more as
entities in their selves, as opposed to just marketing loss leaders for
album sales as they are today.

Artists would gain new fans via single sales, while continuing to sell
entire albums to their core constituency.  The per unit cost of singles
would still be higher than for albums (nothing to do with production costs,
everything to do with marketing).  However, the cost of the entire album
could be pro-rated according to songs that had already been purchased,
making it more likely for new fans to check out the album after getting a
little taste.  Of course, single versions can be different from album
versions of the same song, in which case the pro-rated cost of the album
could be slightly higher.

But what of the artists that do not deal in catchy, single-type songs?  One
response would be free distribution of selected songs that the artist and
management working together would determine had the goods to hook in new
fans.  These more abstruse artists may also be driven to create music with a
greater trendiness factor, for the purpose of hooking new fans.  I guess the
danger to creativity here would be the misrepresentation of what a
particular artist is all about.  It could also have the positive effect of
introducing more creativity and new ideas to trendy music (like, I'd love to
hear Robert Fripp soloing over a Snoop Dog track.  That's just the sort of
sickie I am.)

-Bob Crain


Message-ID: <>
From: Andrew Gowans <>
Subject: Hey..great threads!
Date: Tue, 06 Jul 1999 12:44:58 EST

Greetings Chalkers,

Having been out of touch (due to embarrassment at running away at the mouth
in my last posting) it is good to come back and find some more good stuff
happenning. All the following refers to postings in Vol 5 No 228.

Mark Strijbos mentioned the link of Apple Venus with the Aphrodite/Helen of
Troy myth. It reminds me, a favourite of mine is the "Rock Opera" Paris
co-penned by Jon English...a damn fine muso. It doesn't touch on the
apple-giving story, so no fresh insights on what Apple Venus means, but if
you see a copy give it never know.

Daniel Wrzesinski recommended Head. I couldn't agree more, a video copy of
that is a high-rotation item on my VCR. Head the album is also good, it
contains some of The Monkees strongest material. If you see the Rhino
Records reisuues get them they are great quality. Also, does anyone have a
tape of The Monkees TV special from 1968 (?) called 33 1/3 Revolutions per
Monkee ? I saw this years ago (25+) and would like to see it again for
reference. Mail if off-line and we can discuss trades.

Anyway, I must run for my train.

"The words "Coca-Cola" translate into Chinese as either
(depending on the inflection) "wax-fattened mare" or "bite the wax
tadpole"."-- John Carrol, San Francisco Chronicle

The Rat


Message-Id: <>
From: Janis VanCourt <>
Subject: Chord/Tablature Help
Date: Tue, 6 Jul 1999 08:26:39 -0400

Would anyone care to work out the chord chart to Andy's  "When We Get To
England" from Jules Verne's Sketchbook?  I'm just re-learning guitar (after
not owning one for 15 years) and this is one of the songs I've dearly been
wanting to play.  It's not on the web as far as I know.  Can anyone help?



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