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Subject: Chalkhills Digest #7-39


          Chalkhills Digest, Volume 7, Number 39

                  Thursday, 28 June 2001

Topics:

                   okay here we go....
              The Big Express vs. The World
                        How Much?
                      AC: Oh, I See!
                       Re: masters
                 Freaks and Geeks and XTC
             Re: "King For A Day" percussion
                     We have an Idea
                    Public XTC Stories
      The Godfathers & So I Married an Axe Murderer
               Freak, Geeks and No Language
                Schoolguide to Chalkhills
     Little-Known Fact About alt.fan.andy-j-partridge
                     Go 2 on cassette
                         The Chad
                  Dash of this and that
                    This Title No Verb
                   10 Year Anniversary
                Remasters > bass-ically CM
                    Shriekback Reunion
                   Dukes: UK or Japan?
                     About painting.
                XTC Night At earthwire.net
                RE: Travis . . . Bickle??
                  I'm Still Standing...
           Australian currency and supermarkets

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Red as a pin with a tortoise skin, and I'm only a Saturn Boy.

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

Date: Sat, 23 Jun 2001 05:42:59 -0700
From: Molly McCarron <malone3@earthlink.net>
Subject: okay here we go....
Message-ID: <B759DCE3.1CE1%malone3@earthlink.net>

okay, i'm drunk enough to do this now...

let me whore myself around the internet..

please people, help me stop listening to Wasp Star..

i cannot stop!  someone please help me!  i dunno what it is, summertime,
birds, bees, squishy thoughts, oh god!  please, it is toooo addicting!

anyways, check out my shit & tell me what a big fat loser i am!  ha ha just
kidding...

nice to know i'm not the only Molly in the world.  And she loves XTC as
well.  right on.

http://www.ArtHire.com/cgi-bin/ArtHire$EmplNWWBR

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

Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2001 02:33:56 -0400
From: Sylvan Migdal <psiogen@mindspring.com>
Subject: The Big Express vs. The World
Message-ID: <200106260635.CAA32177@mclean.mail.mindspring.net>

I'm very intrigued by the wondrous stories of TBE's remastering, as this
has always been my favorite album... I may have to buy this, even though
I had decided to hold off on getting the remasters until I'd managed to
work my way through Gentle Giant's catalog. The thing that always
annoyed me about the old Big Express CD was that Seagulls and This World
Over were so much softer than the other songs. I always have to turn the
volume up when I get to them. I hope that's been fixed.
Anyway, I can't fathom why The Big Express isn't more widely recognized
for its fabulosity. The general view seems to be that it's just an
"average" XTC album.Sure, it's not very well produced, but the first
side is simply the best album side they've ever done. And the only thing
that weakens the second side a bit is Reign of Blows. And with Wake Up,
Seagulls, and This World Over, the rest of the album could have been
taken up by a 30 minute dance remix of Strange Tales, Strange Tails and
it would still be a great album. The fact that I Remember The Sun and
Smalltown aren't my favorite songs on the album shows just how good of
an album it is.
  It was a transitional album, but I think it was actually better for it.
It has the mature songwriting of Skylarking, yet is more highly charged
than any of their other post-Andrews albums. It was the first XTC album
I picked up, and it still has something that no other album has quite
equaled, as good as they all are.
Who is with me? I know you're out there!
--
Sylvan
http://spork.keenspace.com
"The hamster is still dead." --Leonard Nimoy

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

Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2001 03:06:36 -0400
From: Molly <mollyfa0000@worldnet.att.net>
Subject: How Much?
Message-ID: <3B38347B.31E4B3FF@worldnet.att.net>
Organization: AT&T Worldnet

How much are the Japanese imports?  Will I have to shell out more than
$100, and why should I get them anyway if I already have the albums
already?  I'm not convinced yet in paying mega bucks for something I
already have.  Will I be a bad XTC fan if I don't buy them?  Will they
ever get released here in the US?  I wish the remasters were released in
the US then I wouldn't have to worry about shelling out the moola for
the remasters.  I've heard Japanese imports can cost a pretty penny.
More than the British imports I've gotten online.

Molly

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

Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2001 15:59:02 +1000
From: "Culnane, Paul" <Paul.Culnane@dcita.gov.au>
Subject: AC: Oh, I See!
Message-ID: <EEAD847E742DD51196550000E896881D40DF27@g5dccbr0ms01.dcita.gov.au>

Firstly, thanks to all of you who emailed me or posted in 'Hills to explain
the meaning of the term "AC".  Of course!  It really *does* stand for anal
cleansing!

Ackshirley, some of the replies I got were out and out hilarious, and I
appreciate your responses.  For the record, yes, I live in what could be
called a temperate climate, and we do use our car "ACs" full-blast in the
summer.  Colloquially here in Oz though, air conditioning tends to be
referred to as "air-con".  Another strange one I first heard when I was a
car salesman ("would you buy a... off this man?", etc etc) was "fast glass"
- referring to power-operated windows.  Cars are strange, eh?

Anyway, onto matters musical...

STARPARK UPDATE

This little black duck will be visiting Terry Chambers (aka Felix Rex
O'Tels) and his family in about a fortnight.  I'll be able to catch TC's son
Kai and his band, STARPARK in a live setting for the first time, as well as
discuss forthcoming album recording arrangements.  Not to mention the
imbibement (?) of one or two (or several) "cold ones" with the great man
himself!  I will report back on how things go, and whether The Pink Fairies
are really all they're cracked up to be.

Meanwhile, a couple of you have expressed interest in the (newer, younger)
STARPARK's doings.  Well, there's a website with a brief bio on the trio,
plus some funny little questionnaire things the boys have filled in, not to
mention (but I will) a review by yours truly on the band's splendiferous
demo CD.  Check out this site: http://www.vocalassault.com/   ...just select
"featured bands" and then go to STARPARK's page.  Enjoy!

More STARPARK news to come.

Paul "breezin' but freezin' with no AC reason" Culnane
Canberra, Australia

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

Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2001 04:52:36 EDT
From: WTDK@aol.com
Subject: Re: masters
Message-ID: <a5.178e38f7.2869a754@aol.com>

In a message dated 6/25/01 10:09:28 PM Pacific Daylight Time,
an unidentified contributor writes:

> Have the other remasters with bonus tracks listed them on the
> album sleeves?)

No (at least the Japanese remasters) the artwork represents the original
album as it appeared when first released (although Go 2 is the exception
with the sleeve for Go+ but, of course, no CD).

I concur that Nonsvch is an improvement over the original. It isn't a huge
improvement but every little bit helps. For the record the Japanese
remasters have a lyric sheet. It sounds as if there is mixed feelings
about the sound on the Dukes CD reissue.  Despite the hefty price tag for
some of the remasters (depends upon where you purchase them), it's worth
it just for the packaging.

I agree that not having everything the band has shouldn't be a criteria for
being a fan.

Wayne

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

Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2001 08:38:39 -0400 (EDT)
From: Karen Piotrowski <karen@semi.nu>
Subject: Freaks and Geeks and XTC
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.33L2.0106260828120.10288-100000@frame.pinchaser.com>

Well, this isn't a sitcom, but worth mentioning because the shows
mezmorizing.

I have found myself thoroughly engrossed by an anime that is finally
released on DVD in the US, Neon Genesis Evangelion (if you haven't seen
this, you MUST) and in the installment 0:7 (I cant remember which of the
three episodes on this installment where I saw this but...) one of the
main characters, Shinji, is facing away from the camera... well, hes
drawn facing away from the camera... in any event, his tshirt has 'XTC' on
the back much like the Chalkhills tshirts  that Phil sells (or sold.. and
that was Phil I hope - i have the worst memory...)  I saw that and began
clapping furiously and roused the wierdest look from my boyfriend because
it was an inopurtune moment to clap :)

Oh and I heard King for a Day at Target a few weeks back...

Karen

On Wed, 20 Jun 2001 14:07:40 -0400 (EDT) frippy pondered:
>
>Any other TV shows that featured XTC songs?  I'm curious now. I would
>imagine somewhere in all 9 of those Real Worlds, they've at least had a 10
>second snippet of one song, but to confirm it, I'd actually have to WATCH
>The Real World...
>
>This list comforts me in reassuring me that I'm not the only XTC geek to
>get giddy and excited whenever they hear XTC on TV or in the grocery
>store.

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

Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2001 09:03:42 -0400
From: Douglas Bailey <trystero@ne.mediaone.net>
Subject: Re: "King For A Day" percussion
Message-ID: <5.1.0.14.2.20010626085605.01fe3ae8@pop3.norton.antivirus>

>Sean Robison writes:
>
>Oranges and Lemons: ...there's a different (or possibly the original)
>version of "King For A Day" on this disc. The remastered version has an
>additional piece of percussion running through the song - every few
>measures, you hear what sounds like two sticks being struck in sets of
>three (clack! clack! clack!). It fits perfectly with the song. I checked a
>different
>copy of the song thinking maybe this percussion was just buried in the
>muddy mix, but it's nowhere to be heard. Anybody have any idea where this
>new percussive bit came from?

That woodblock-y sound is *present* on my older CD copy of O&L (which was
the gold Mobile Fidelity disc), but it's not nearly as prominent in the
mix: I'd never really noticed it until now. (FWIW, I first heard the
remaster while driving, and nearly went off the road in my distraction when
I reached "King For A Day".)

One other slight change on O&L: the very start of "Garden of Earthly
Delights" doesn't have the momentary gap between the cod-Eastern beginning
and the first beat of the song: it goes straight in. It's not *bad*, but it
did throw me: took me a few listens to get used to that alteration.

Otherwise, though, the O&L remaster is splendid: it's still a little bright
(though I think that's the recording), but it's a remarkable improvement in
detail. In particular, the clattery/cluttery songs like "Poor Skeleton
Steps Out" and "Scarecrow People" benefit greatly from the added clarity of
the remastering. Lovely.

doug

--
this week dragged past me so slowly; the days fell on their knees...
                                                   --david bowie

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

Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2001 08:42:17 -0500
From: steve <steveschiavo@mac.com>
Subject: We have an Idea
Message-ID: <200106261345.GAA08447@smtpout.mac.com>

http://www.xtcidearecords.co.uk/

Not much there yet, but it is up.

- Steve

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

Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2001 09:58:04 -0400
From: "DuBray, Dan" <Dan.DuBray@mail.house.gov>
Subject: Public XTC Stories
Message-ID: <435A5CEEACA6D211BEEA0008C75DA8850C935512@hrm12.house.gov>

I rather enjoyed the memories of others who have heard XTC in the
supermarket, the dentist's chair and the like.

This past holiday season I actually heard XTC's "Thanks For Christmas" in a
Taco Bell in Virginia.  I was there with my children, who can attest to the
fact that I was rendered utterly speechless.

Dan DuBray
McLean, Virginia

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

Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2001 10:50:12 -0400
From: "Michael Versaci" <mwversaci@att.net>
Subject: The Godfathers & So I Married an Axe Murderer
Message-ID: <000001c0fe4f$4fa7c380$0c01010a@tornbmv>

Folxtc,

(Appy Polly Ogies to Mr. Relph for going off-topic, but the odds are pretty
good that I can find what need right here on the hill!)

Question number 1.

There is a line in the old Godfathers tune "Birth School Work Death" :

"Well I've felt torture and I've felt pain
 Just like that film with Michael Caine!"

What film with Michael Caine?

Question number 2.

In the Mike Myers film, "So I Married an Axe Murderer," Mike Myers recites
beat poetry to some cool jazz.  My guess is (knowing Mike's style) that
there is probably a recording artist out there someplace who actually did
that sort of thing for real.  Can anybody point me in the right direction?

Michael Versaci

"Up on the hill they think I'm ok,
 Or so they say..."

Becker & Fagen

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

Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2001 10:56:02 -0400
From: cutterccbaxter@netscape.net
Subject: Freak, Geeks and No Language
Message-ID: <6858B01B.4CA6A769.6DE2C5FB@netscape.net>

> From: frippy <frippy@shellyeah.org>
>
> I'm sure I'm not the first one to point this out but I was watching
> "Freaks and Geeks" last night on the Family channel (it used to be on NBC,
> but it was too good, so they yanked it in place for some show about a
> sardonic blue-collar dad) and during a scene where gym class jocks are
> picking teams, a familiar guitar line caught my ear, "I know that!"
>
> The song turned to be "No Language In Our Lungs," they did splice it a bit
> here and there, like you heard "There is no muscle in our tongues" after
> the first chorus, but it was still cool to hear XTC in a tv show,
> especially one that I liked.  I was bouncing to tell someone.

I remember when I first saw that episode on NBC and I heard the
opening of "No Language..." I became very excited too. There
were other posts on Chalkhills from that time that also shared
my sentiments.

I visted the Freaks and Geeks website shortly thereafter and it
said feel free to e-mail the show's producers with some encouraging
words as they were apparently bumming out over the ratings of the
show and looming cancellation.
I e-mailed Paul Feig, the show's creator and co-producer,
and told him I loved the show and that it was great they
had used an XTC song.  It was the first time I had ever
written a fan letter.
Paul was nice enough to take the time to respond to my letter
and he said, "Thanks for your support.  XTC rules!"

Later on the F&G message board someone asked Paul what his
favorite musical moments in the show were, and he listed
the use of "No Language In Our Lungs" as one that
he was very proud of.
Even if I wasn't an XTC fan I think it was an inspired
use of music in terms of embelishing the drama of the
scene.
At any rate, perhaps Paul will work some XTC into some
of his future projects

-Todd

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

Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2001 10:13:49 -0500
From: Rudder - Lore Guilmartin <loreg@housing.tamu.edu>
Subject: Schoolguide to Chalkhills
Message-ID: <8EFBD8CCFDACD411AF2C00A0C9C85960089B7E@godzilla.tamu.edu>

Hello, all,

I bought a copy of "The Schoolguide to Chalkhills" at a local record store,
knowing that someone here would want it!  It's up for bid on ebay until this
afternoon.  If it hasn't sold by then I'll relist it.  The opening bid is
just enough to reimburse my costs.  If you're interested and want to take a
look my userid is "loreglmrtn".  :-)

Lore

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

Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2001 11:18:17 EDT
From: Hbsherwood@aol.com
Subject: Little-Known Fact About alt.fan.andy-j-partridge
Message-ID: <d.16a81052.286a01b9@aol.com>

It appears that not many of its denizens these days know it, but the
newsgroup alt.fan.andy-j-partridge was not founded to honor Our Extrovert.

Andy J. Partridge was, back in the mists of Internet Time, something of a
legend in the phreaking (telephone hacking) and Commodore 64 worlds, and
the newsgroup was formed around him, somewhere around 1995. XTC fans,
assuming they'd found *the* Andy Partridge, sort of took it over. True,
*the* Andy Partridge's middle name starts with "J," but have you ever --
*ever* -- heard him use it?

Some of the *other* Andy Partridge's tracks from those days have not been
completely covered up, and you can see a few of his works at

http://www.phreak.co.uk/pteknik/0800.txt

and

http://groups.google.com/groups?q=andy+j.+partridge+faq&hl=en&safe=off&rnum=1&ic=1&selm=822255304.29883%40andyland.demon.co.uk

He appears to have gone straight in his old age, and even has a legitimate
job-n-stuff, and you can even read his blog (which is dead dull) at his
vanity web site at

http://diary.andyjpartridge.co.uk/index.php?Page=home

He appears to be completely unaware of (or perhaps is studiously ignoring)
any connection between him and *the* Andy Partridge, or between him and the
newsgroup. His site has a search tool, but entries for "XTC," "Chalkhills,"
"alt.fan.andy-j-partridge" and "shredded wheat bikini top" turned up nothing.

The alt.* hierarchy in Usenet (as far as I understand it) can't be moderated
(unlike the rec.* hierarchy, for example). Newgrouping alt.fan.xtc would
create yet another haven for pointless spam. Also, bots regularly troll the
newsgroups looking for e-mail addresses. Look for your spam count to go up if
you post there.

I weep for the glory that was Usenet before the Clampdown got its meathooks
in.

Harrison "J." Sherwood

PS: For the life of me, I'll never understand people who rate records based
on their sonic quality to the exclusion of the actual content. ("Don't like
Skylarking, it's too compressed....") It's like panning a novel because you
don't like the paper it's printed on--a legitimate concern, to be sure, but
fairly far down *my* list of aesthetic criteria. When I put on a record, I
hear notes and words and rhythms and ebb and flow and tension and release and
dynamics and tonal coloration... Isn't that what *you* hear?

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

Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2001 12:05:19 -0500
From: JH3 <jh3@winco.net>
Subject: Go 2 on cassette
Message-ID: <010a01c0fe62$2ebf1a20$d7df90cf@alternatech.net>
Organization: JH3 Unlimited, Ltd.

Angie Hill writes:
>Anyhow, I was just wondering if anyone else has a copy of Go 2
>like I do. I bought my cassette of Go 2 about 10 years ago, used.
>The cassette itself is solid blue/black. It is otherwise normal except
>the song "Are You Receiving Me?" appears between "The Rhythm"
>and "Red". It is not listed on the sleeve or the cassette itself.

You probably have Virgin International VIC 2108, then! That's the
one with their otherwise-unavailable cover of the Monkees' "Last
Train to Clarksville" on it.

OKAY, I'M KIDDING! I was just thinking, hmm, maybe I could drive
up the eBay value of this particular item somehow...

John "it's also my favorite cassette" Hedges

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

Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2001 20:01:43 +0100
From: "Richard Hall" <rkhall@cableinet.co.uk>
Subject: The Chad
Message-ID: <001301c0fe72$76a31520$b7e530d5@tinypc>

Google Search brought up http://www.jackiefly.com/chadlist.htm where
some random being named Chad called Wasp Star the 7th best album of 2000.

I wonder if it's Chad from the UK band Mansun? Well worth a listen, they
cite XTC amongst their influences. (if you're in any doubt, check out their
'Shotgun' for some AP style cadences.)

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

Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2001 16:49:17 -0500
From: Andrew Boyle <uscolor@uscolor.com>
Subject: Dash of this and that
Message-ID: <v04210103b75ea716bebb@[192.168.0.3]>

Hello all,

Look a lull in the storm. For me.

Ed K. posted:

>P.P. Boy said:
> >but releasing a set of demos like Homegrown is similar to charging
> >people to sit in rehearsals for a play or publishing the first draft
> >of a novel complete with rewrites and editors notes.
>
>And this is a point against the idea how?
>Seriously, this happens all the time; you can often get special rehearsal
>tickets, sometimes with Q&A sessions with the actors after the play, for
>those interested in the process.

And I might add: What do you call exhibition sports? They are just
practicing. Rehearsing. It doesn't count toward the total outcome
down the road.

Some people pay money to go because they loooooove that sport so
much. The owners are happy to charge you to sit and watch something
that doesn't matter in the grand scheme. "And while you are here, why
not enjoy a $5 beer and $4 peanuts? "

I put off buying Homegrown because I didn't see the point at first.
Plus, Napster was causing me to actually go out and BUY actual CDs
(contrary to the corporate spin) that I thought I would wait.

Once I got it: Wow! I am the sort that enjoys a good documentary and
the little insights provide enrich my XTC experience. Just the major
difference in Man Who Murdered... demo is worth it. To me. Because I
loooooove this band.
* __________________________________

In a related note, if you stop by http://www.xtcidearecords.co.uk/
these days what used to be a fairly blank page is now a Homegrown
page with a sign-up for notification when it is more complete.
* __________________________________

Steve Johnson wrote:

>However, sometimes the CD case isn't in my car at the same time as
>the CD.  So when I put in a new CD, I stick the old one in the glove
>compartment (or whatever you call it in England), or on the car
>seat, or whatever.  And of course, the CD's get all scratched and
>warped, so eventually I have to go out and buy a new one.

Um...you could invest in a muff. Or even a second CD player to keep
empty just in case. Or a bowl of jello. It washes off easily and is
soft. Then you have to have something to keep the jello cool, I
guess. Actually, I think I would damage my dashboard with push pins
rather than toss a loose CD in the glove box. But if you have that
much cash...

* __________________________________

I will away for now. Especially after that.

Yatch Dance is now stuck in my head (Dammit, Angie!).

Off to see the shuttle,

Andrew Boyle
Orlando, FL

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

Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2001 19:17:35 -0700 (PDT)
From: eriC draveS <zoom98@sega.net>
Subject: This Title No Verb
Message-ID: <200106270217.TAA29017@outmail3.pacificnet.net>

Hi guys! Latest batch of musings from the museless man.

HEROIC OUT OF PROPORTIONS

John Johns, "Super, Supergirl", "Brainiac's Daughter", "Sgt. Rock is
Going to Help Me", I'm speaking to the Justice League of America,
"Sunshine Superman" (whoops, that's Donovan).

1. Will there be any Batman-themed songs? Maybe the cartoon people
could buy one and PLAY IT ALL THE TIME with the cartoon so the
Dynamic-sounding Duo can get enough royalties to be Kings for a Day.

2. Will it be strictly DC-only and no Marvels?

VIEW-MASTERING

Everyone's posted already about how nice or lousy the remasters are
(take your pick), the general consensus is that they're either okay or
a wasteful expense.

Well, I got some remasters an I enjoyed them thoroughly, but these are
a different kind of remasters than everyone else is talking about.

I stopped playing my cassette copies of my CDs and started just
playing the CDs! And let me tell you, the sounds are more vibrant, I
can hear everything clearly, and am even "getting" the difficult bits
in the lyrics!

Now, a completist may say, "Is the track order the same?" and I must
admit, there are differences. The doubles on Rag & Bone Buffet were
put back in, as were the Christmas tracks.

Of course, Nonsuch and afterwards ARE from the original masters,
without exception those last three are first printings of the CDs, and
they still sound great. Isn't digital wonderful? Of course not.

CASTLES AND KINGS WERE STONED...

I was going to show my devotion to my favorite band (now what was that
again? Madness? Level 42? Oh yeah, the one about the drug) in an
unusual way.

I play lots of MPOGs (Multi-Player Online Games), and since my
favorite is Kingdoms3 (at http://www2.httpgames.com/kingdoms/), I
thought I would start a clan called the Dukes of Stratosphear.

The it struck me. Kingdoms3 was going to be replaced with Kingdoms4,
whose clan names were rather short. Hmmm... what to call it now? ELO?
BTO? CCR?

Well, I was all set with XTC, I worked for weeks on the website for
the clan, the graphics were all ready, I had the enemies and allies
page all handy, and...

I couldn't do it.

Don't get me wrong, I loved the group enough, but the problem was, I
needed it to be the Dukes, because my player name was going to be
XTC. "XTC as King of XTC" sounds daft.

Then we worked it out; I was going to play as "Andy", and my brother
as "Colin", but in all fairness, these names would not exactly strike
terror into our opponents' hearts. Then we tried "Partridge" and
"Moulding", but that failed even worse. Actually it failed quite well.

There was just no chance of a satisfactory arrangement, so we ended up
making a clan about the Marx Brothers.

Well, the best I can manage is to link to Chalkhills from the site (at
http://marxbros.topcities.com). Maybe some other player of some other
MPOG has a story about his favorite group of rocks, and how he/she
SUCCEEDED in pushing XTC and not getting arrested for it.

Thank you and good night.

eriC draveS
--
"Na na na NAH na na nah..."

--from "Life is Good in the Greenhouse"

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

Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2001 23:45:18 -0400 (EDT)
From: RSMko@webtv.net (Moore's Code)
Subject: 10 Year Anniversary
Message-ID: <24235-3B3956CE-1841@storefull-256.iap.bryant.webtv.net>

Hey Kids. Uncle R. Stevie here.

Just thought to inform you: this Friday 29 June marks the tenth
anniversary of a very important XTC date in these parts:
Friend and WFMU DJ Jim Price snagged a seminal overseas phone interview
with Mr. Partridge. Its lively transcript has enjoyed a cozy home here
at Chez Chalkhills for a long, long time.

Revisit here:

http://chalkhills.org/articles/WFMU9106.html

Time fly by,
RSM
Bloomfield NJ USA
www.rsteviemoore.com/news.html

--
>>"Gee, our old LaSalle ran great."

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

Date: Wed, 27 Jun 2001 14:33:15 +1000
From: "Culnane, Paul" <Paul.Culnane@dcita.gov.au>
Subject: Remasters > bass-ically CM
Message-ID: <EEAD847E742DD51196550000E896881D40DF31@g5dccbr0ms01.dcita.gov.au>

Here I bathe in remaster heaven.  Revisiting afresh this remarkable body
of work.  Really shakes my donkey up.  They are uniformly wonderful.  If
you want your XtC properly in the digital age, get 'em!!

One thing I've noticed as being a consistent point of interest, not to say
joy to these ears: Colin's bass playing!  Right from the word go, with his
berserk, angular throb on "Science Friction", through to his intriguingly
funky double-tracked almost slap bass on "Standing In For Joe".  With
countless noteworthy stops in between.  Throughout XtC's illustrious
history, embellished now with this brilliant series of
digitally-remastered Compact Discs, Colin McMoulding (meant as swift
compliment) has provided the band with perhaps its most under-studied and
under-rated of assets.

While I was being frightened and boggled by all the other revelations with
this fresh collection - too many to go into here - the main thing I
noticed right through my marathon listening session was Colin's fantastic
basswork, never less than inventive yet steady, subtle then propulsive.  I
admire his command of the instrument, but it's the sounds he makes and his
seldom-acknowledged musical role in the band that got me.

Whaddaya think?

Oh, another thing - my mate Dom pointed this out... some of the new discs
- at least "Nonsuch" and "The Big Express" by my fathoming - have had some
of the tail-ends of certain tracks trimmed (try saying that with a
mouthful of KFC Xtra Tangy Cutlet).  Yeah, it's interesting to do an A-B
comparison (providing one can) between an existing CD and the equivalent
new master, if you want to check this phenomenon, if not compare the
chalk-and-cheese improvement in sound as well.

One more thing... there's an obscene Dave Gregory guitar burp at about
2.53 (elapsed) in "Wake Up" that I don't think I'd really heard before.
Like, there's a bar before the faux-strings come in, it's just before
that.    Did your Ricky enjoy a fierce Vindaloo that night Dave?

Back to work with my sonic microscope...

Oh, wait a mo' longer please: Hey Mitch - what a beautiful account of your
envy-provoking trip to "Blighty".  Sounds like you and your friends had a
fabbo time and thanks for sharing all the details with us.  ...but now I'm
even more confused about what's going to be on "Cupboards" and what will
be gathered up for "Warbles".  But this time around, I have vowed to wait
and see what manna's forth.

I mean, what with the resplendently packaged Virgin back-catalogue, the
delightful "Homegrown", two imminent demo/rarity play-boxes and the
promise of fresh material in the new year, who could honestly say we were
ill-served by XtC?

Digital Love
Paul

PS: new Weezer CD is pretty good for a quick party blast!

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

Date: Wed, 27 Jun 2001 14:45:51 +0200
From: Thomas Hoheisel <Thomas.Hoheisel@fachkommunikation.fh-magdeburg.de>
Subject: Shriekback Reunion
Message-ID: <3.0.1.32.20010627144551.009d47a0@mailserv>

Hey, did you catch this?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Billboard Online, June 26, 2001

Moody dance-pop group Shriekback is taking a democratic approach to
providing its fanbase with a reunion album. The band's official Web site is
exhorting fans to send cash donations to help fund the recording of a new
album featuring the original Shriekback lineup (Barry Andrews, Dave Allen,
Carl Marsh).

Since the group does not currently have a label deal, it plans to fund the
recording and production of the album through personal donations. Everyone
who contributes money to the fund will be mentioned on the album sleeve,
and those contributing $50 or more will also receive a signed copy of the
finished product.

Shriekback's original lineup, which featured key members of seminal bands
XTC and Gang Of Four, has not recorded together since the 1986 album "Big
Night Music" (Island), although an album recorded in 1995 featuring
principal Barry Andrews was released under the Shriekback name in 2000 on
Australian label Mushroom. "Big Night Music" peaked at No. 145 on The
Billboard 200 in 1987, and the single "Intoxication" hit No. 6 on
Billboard's Modern Rock Tracks chart in September 1988.

-- Troy Carpenter, N.Y

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Just wanted to let you know should you wish to chip in.

Tom.

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

Date: Wed, 27 Jun 2001 10:01:15 -0400
From: Keith Hanlon <keith@orchestraville.com>
Subject: Dukes: UK or Japan?
Message-ID: <a05101003b75f97561b5e@[216.233.248.162]>

Anybody know if this is a UK or Japanese version?

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00005AV1R

Thanks!

Keith

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

Date: Wed, 27 Jun 2001 16:11:47 +0200
From: art et affiche <art.affiche@wanadoo.fr>
Subject: About painting.
Message-ID: <3B39E99D.27998A61@wanadoo.fr>

It's spring on the Hill, and <Mr. Partridge buys new paint for the
sodding green shed. "Oi! Don't know why the side on the alley's rubbed
smooth!">

Apparently it's summer now. Mr. Partridge changed his mind and came
back to the hardware shop. Instead of the green, he bought deep orange
and red paints for the shed's walls.  "I suddenly realised that I was
making a more mature music", he declared-

:  )

Marie Omnifuzzzz.

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

Date: Wed, 27 Jun 2001 15:18:23 -0500
From: "Dupuy, James" <James.Dupuy@compaq.com>
Subject: XTC Night At earthwire.net
Message-ID: <4D027986353D1341ADA4F2A4F8A170760CB4D3@cceexc18.americas.cpqcorp.net>

Hello XTC fans,
It's been a long time since I have posted. I do check up on the site from
time to time. I think the posts here are very interesting which  shows
something about the fan base for XTC. I am breaking my silence to tell you
about a new internet radio station called earthwire (www.earthwire.net) They
have agreed to let me do a XTC show possibly on a once a week basis. The
first show will be July 3 at 8:00 p.m. central time (US and Canada) and will
last two hours. I have been an XTC fan since 1977 (and one of the lucky ones
to have seen them live in 1980) I have a huge collection (including the
famous demo's). I do take request's if I have it. It will not be hard to
fill up a 2 hour slot of XTC music since the boys are prolific writers. I
think you will enjoy it and would definitely appreciate any requests to help
with the selection. I hope you will enjoy the show.

The Matador

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

Date: Wed, 27 Jun 2001 23:47:48 +0100
From: "David Smith" <David.Smith50@virgin.net>
Subject: RE: Travis . . . Bickle??
Message-ID: <LPBBJEPFIGBHBJHFDMILGEDNCBAA.David.Smith50@virgin.net>

Hi all, long time long lurk, but here I are, all freshly
packaged with new job and the odd fresh opinion or two.

Ira Lieman said about Gossip Central:

> At the end of the article, he says how the band Travis (who I
> have yet to hear, I guess) is a "Beatle spin-off band" and just
> about trips over himself trying to point to Travis as the
> salvation for all that is Rock Music in this world.

Oh. Dear. No.

Ira, if you are a Beatles fan I urge you to BORROW either Travis
album - or both (the first is called "The Man Who", the second "The
Invisible Band").

Listen to one. Think "hey, not bad". Listen to the other. Think "hey,
not ba . . . hang on, didn't I just listen to that song on their
other album? And that one. Hey, and THAT one . . ."

I'm being a little disingenious here - they write nice catchy acoustic
pop-rock and one or two songs (in particular "Why Does it Always Rain On
Me") are good songs. But (certainly here in England) they were touted as
"the saviours of the pop song" and overplayed to death on the radio. In
1999 you could hop 10 channels and hear Travis on every single one.

This would be fine if I could now look back an revisit album number one
away from the glare. Unfortunately they've just released the second one
and the first single "Sing" is just about identical to the first single
("Driftwood") from their first.

And they're simply not that good. Lyrically horrible most of the time,
maudlin and angst ridden in the worst way. It's acoustic student bedsit
blues. Last years next big thing - two words, Alanis and Morisette.

Save yourself Ira, listen to Parachutes by Coldplay or stick with Radiohead
- at best, Travis are a mediocre band, who play "Radiohead Lite".

> I guess I have to make a point to check out this band, as Beatles-spinoff
> kin to (in this order...can't help but laugh) "XTC, Squeeze,
> Electric Light
> Orchestra and a dozen less gifted groups" -- although I don't know if
> comparisons to ELO really apply when discussing The Beatles. Hey,
> I watched
> the ELO Storytellers too, and Mr. Lynne sounds great (and not a
> hair out of
> place!), but I don't really think you can imagine John & Paul and "Don't
> Bring Me Down" in the same breath. <shudder>

Gulp - here's where I admit that I grew up on ELO. Hey, I've admitted to
THAT dirty little secret before, I'm over the shame . . .

Oh, "and how's the drumming Smudge?" I hear you ask . . . work with me
here!

Fine thanks - very pleased to report I'm on "Book 2 - Jazz" (cracks me
up too - what's book three, "Easy Listening Standards"?) and, somehow,
in the midst of hours spent practicing my ride cymbal triplet technique
(ting-ti-TING!) I decided I needed to hit something hard (y'know, shake
the cobwebs out of the wrist).

So Mr Right Hand just started hammering a quick "bom-bom-bom-bom" on
the floor tom. "Hey," thinks Mr Left Hand, "that sounds familiar. What
if I do a "tish-tish" on the open hi-hat.".

"Hmmm", thinks Mr Left Foot. I should close that hi-hat when he hits it.
"That'll turn it into a "tissst-tissst".

"Oh yeah" shoots back Left Handy. "Well, in that case I'm gonna hit the
snare drum an'all . . . pow".

So off they go:

Bom-bom-bom-bom-pow
Bom-bom-tiist-tisst-bom-bom-pow
Bom-bom-tiist-tisst-bom-bom-pow
Bom-bom-tiist-tisst-bom-bom-pow

"Errrr, chaps, chaps," says brain. "Thanks for showing me how to play the
drum pattern for Making Plans Fopr Nigel, but can we pleeeease get back
to the ting-ti-TING!"

I did . . . eventually.

It seems I have a future . . . in British Steel!

I'll get me coat . . .

Smudge "next week, putting the pea soup in Sgt Rock" Boy

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

Date: Thu, 28 Jun 2001 07:56:25 +0200
From: Bergmaier Klaus <klaus.bergmaier@maxonline.at>
Subject: I'm Still Standing...
Message-ID: <41E0B760C85AD3119BE200E0291B6EE50898AE@NTSRV>

...In For Joe, waht did you think?
Hello, fellow Chalkhillians!

I received my copy of Homegrown yesterday (I know I'm late) and I like it.
It proved, that CM did not have Steely Dan in mind while working on "Joe".
It also proves for me once more, that this one of the best songs ever (I
know I repeat myself). Did anyone notice that the descending bassline after
"Softly, softly in the night, well you can guess the rest" is exactly the
same as in the Doors' "You're lost, little girl". This seems to me as if
Colin just wanted to say what the Doors song title means at that point of
his song. If he does so, well, what a superb composition. If it is just a
coincidence, it's still great. For me it's the best passage of the album(s).

Meanwhile the Doors music tour I'm part of is almost half over. Please visit
us/me for some interesting links, Barry's organ and leave a message in our
guestbook.

The best from Austria
Klaus

www.thedoors.at/klaus.html

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

Date: Thu, 28 Jun 2001 21:38:55 +1000
From: "Iain Murray" <Iain.Murray@bigpond.com>
Subject: Australian currency and supermarkets
Message-ID: <001c01c0ffc6$ea29f680$e46e36cb@dmps>

> From: SEBASTIEN MAURY 02 9950 3315 <maury.sebastien@abc.net.au>
> Subject: 4:33
>
> For me, one of the "points" of 4:33 is the audience reaction, something
> which can be lost (or at least the visual aspect) on CD. The piece itself
> is not silent, as there will always be ambient noise in an auditorium,
> never total silence. There's also the suggestion that the piece itself is
> less important than the surrounding stuff, be it audience reaction,
> discomfort or machinery noise.

In addition, it was always my understanding (please let me know if I'm
mistaken, or if this has been mentioned before) that part of the live
performance of "4:33" involved the performer holding up one, two or three
fingers to the audience to let them know which movement they were listening
to.

> In other news, I have been enjoying some oddities of late: the Shooty's
> Groove cover of Dear God, which is not bad, some new (not terribly
> inspiring lyrics) but fairly faithful accompaniment. The CD cost me $5
> (Australian...equivalent to US $0.20 or thereabouts...)

Ooh, nasty, Seb! 60 cents at the very least! (Glad you enjoyed the Richard
Thompson CDs, by the way).

> From: frippy <frippy@shellyeah.org>
> Subject: Freaks and Geeks and XTC
>
> This list comforts me in reassuring me that I'm not the only XTC geek to
> get giddy and excited whenever they hear XTC on TV or in the grocery
> store.

About a year ago, I heard "In Another Life" in my local Woolworths
supermarket. Unfortunately, it made me neither giddy nor excited - I just
wanted to get the hell out before I inserted my trolley in someone (which
was a reaction to Woolworths, not XTC - duh!)

Time to up the dosage, methinks.......

Iain

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

End of Chalkhills Digest #7-39
******************************

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