XTC Song of the Day thread

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by George Co-Stanza, Aug 11, 2018.

  1. George Co-Stanza

    George Co-Stanza Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    America
    I thought this would be a fun thread, since I just got into the band this past spring in a big way and am still listening to them a ton, where we talk about a different XTC song every day. Assuming there is interest, I will keep this going to cover every song from every studio album and even some of the non-album tracks. This thread will obviously take a while, but I am down for it. :cool:

    A few ground rules:

    1) as the thread starter, please let me post the song that we will discuss.
    2) I am not going in chronological order. I will bounce all around, which I think makes it more fun...what song will be featured next?? ;)
    3) feel free to discuss any song that has been discussed so far if you miss it the day of.

    Away we go!

    Today's song is "Respectable Street"



    A great song to kick off Black Sea, one of their best albums. That big powerful sound hits you right away, with those thundering drums and powerful riffage. And a hook that is as good as any they did in the early days. It is nearly impossible for me to sing along to the "wooo-ooo-ooo"s in the background during the verses. Love this song.
     
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  2. Fastnbulbous

    Fastnbulbous Forum Resident

    Location:
    Washington DC USA
    The first XTC song I remember hearing was the live version on Urgh or whatever it's called. Dynamite tune and funny lyrics.
     
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  3. hutlock

    hutlock Forum Resident

    Location:
    Cleveland, OH, USA
    I adore this song, might be my favorite XTC "rocker" actually. Andy's vocal snarl on the third verse is just amazing, kicks the tune into overdrive. I am generally incapable of playing it just once -- it's one of those I need to hear two or three times minimum.

    I actually really like Andy's vocal on that third verse of the single version (with cleaned up lyrics, hence a different vocal take.) I can't abide by the self censorship but I do like how he changes the melody on that verse on the "bang the wall for me to turn down..." part. One of those thrilling little musical seconds that make being a music geek so special.
     
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  4. lightbulb

    lightbulb Not the Brightest of the Bunch

    Location:
    Smogville CA USA
    Great XTC song!
    It’s their first that really caught my attention...most likely due to the pounding instrumentation, then also contrasted with the precise, biting lyrics verbalized by Andy Partridge.

    (Their earlier single, Making Plans For Nigel, was laden with a new-wave hook, but I was just mildly curious...)

    In fact, Black Sea was the first XTC album that I picked up - in the green paper wrapper.
     
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  5. snapdeus

    snapdeus Active Member

    Location:
    New York
    Thoughts on the Black Sea remaster by Steven Wilson? I think it sounds the best of all the XTC remasters he's done.
     
  6. George Co-Stanza

    George Co-Stanza Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    America
    I should be receiving that and the Skylarking one in the mail any day now! Can't wait to hear how they sound in 5.1!!
     
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  7. vince

    vince Stan Ricker's son-in-law

    Dare I say;
    "URGH! A Music War" changed my 'music-interest', to the more 'adventurous' rock!
     
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  8. Alofter

    Alofter Nowhere Man

    Location:
    Marshall Michigan
    Great song. Really nailed my young adult feelings after purchasing (well the bank did) our first house.
    Hutlock made some great points about the edit, which can still be found on the Rag and Bone Buffet comp, a must have if you can still find one.
     
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  9. George Co-Stanza

    George Co-Stanza Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    America
    Today's song is "Complicated Game"



    This song was kind of an afterthought for me at first, as it was not an immediate grabber, but I've come around to enjoying it quite a bit. The first three albums have way more misses than hits for me, but the slow burn of this song really grows on you the more you listen. I feel like this is one I will like more and more as times goes on.

     
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  10. hutlock

    hutlock Forum Resident

    Location:
    Cleveland, OH, USA
    Agreed, though I do miss the transitions. But it sounds amazing.
     
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  11. hutlock

    hutlock Forum Resident

    Location:
    Cleveland, OH, USA
    Oh man, this one. Nothing can replicate the first time I heard it -- just totally unexpected and jaw dropping. The slow burn of it building up to that climax ad what sounds like Andy shredding his vocal cords. A truly powerful piece of music made from deceptively simple parts. One of the best album-closers ever.
     
  12. ralph7109

    ralph7109 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Franklin, TN
    The opposite for me. The first time I heard it, it actually did grab me and quickly became one of my favorites.

    I love how it starts off soft and he goes nuts by the end.
     
  13. DaverJ

    DaverJ Forum Resident

    Location:
    East Tennessee
    A definite grower. Initially I didn't care for much of anything on D&W, but after numerous repeated listens, it's charms finally warmed on me.

    Complicated Game is one of the high points of the album - a complete building of a song from quiet annoyance to screaming desperation. Andy at his most complex genius.

    And because I missed yesterday, Respectable Street was were it started for me, and still ranks as a top-10-of-all-time song in my book.
     
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  14. DirkM

    DirkM Forum Resident

    Location:
    MA, USA
    I was going to say the same thing! Actually, I prefer the single version in every possible way:

    1) It omits the boring intro
    2) The mix has more energy
    3) As you said, Andy's vocal has more bite during the climax of the song. On the album version, he fluffs it; on the single version, you can feel his anger and frustration: "TURN down!!!"
    4) The "censored" lyrics are better than the originals! "Now she speaks about diseases/And which proposition pleases best her old man" is hilarious, and much witter than "sex position."



    Re: Complicated Game, once again, I'd prefer to cut off the intro. It's cool the first few times, but then it gets annoying on repeated plays. It's ultimately one of those songs that I respect and "like," but I don't get a lot of pleasure out of hearing it (if that makes any sense).
     
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  15. George Co-Stanza

    George Co-Stanza Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    America
    I love the intro. It's this lovely, quiet intro, and then bam they kill us with that riff and the thundering drums. And then we get that intro melody reprised in the bridge about halfway through the song. Very effective.
     
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  16. George Co-Stanza

    George Co-Stanza Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    America
    I am at a point lately where I literally listen to Respectable Street every single day. After a long work day, it is just a great song to crank up as soon as you get in the car.
     
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  17. YardByrd

    YardByrd Forum Resident

    Location:
    Expat in Helsinki
    A band that took me over 15 years to get into... I loved the Dukes EP the moment I heard it roughly a year after release and bought Psonic Psunspot the week it came out... so, one would think XTC itself would be a natural fit... not so... I repeatedly tried listening to them but something turned me off... mostly the production/engineering... everything was soooo clean... wasn't until Dec. 2001 that I finally "got it"... still have to tune out the cleanliness at times... needless to say, I often prefer the songs on Transistor Blast as opposed to the studio versions, which I have grown to love.
     
  18. riknbkr330

    riknbkr330 Forum Resident

    Respectable Street - Fantastic song and production. Love the early scratchy "vinyl sound", then to that powerful B chord to the ....Andy X chords. Weird chords that I still have trouble making out.

    Complicated Game - Never liked this. I always skip it.
     
  19. snapdeus

    snapdeus Active Member

    Location:
    New York
    The interaction between the bass and drums on Complicated Game is my favorite thing to focus on. The bass slides up are in total lock-step with the bass drum and snare. Also, Andy Partridge talks about his love of creating board/strategy games in the book "Complicated Game" in relation to this song, which is an interesting component I never thought of.
     
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  20. Fastnbulbous

    Fastnbulbous Forum Resident

    Location:
    Washington DC USA
    Complicated Game is the worst song on an otherwise brilliant album. :hide:
     
  21. George Co-Stanza

    George Co-Stanza Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    America
    Today's song is "Jason and the Argonauts"



    Hands down, one of my favorite XTC songs. The groove laid down by Terry Chambers is absolutely killer, with Colin Moulding lending a big assist as well. I can never crank this up loud enough when listening in the car. "Buying knives!!"
     
  22. Jason was a big hit with me right out of the gate. The lyrics are top and the phased drums were tastefully done. This was my second favorite song on English Settlement after Senses Working Overtime.
     
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  23. DaverJ

    DaverJ Forum Resident

    Location:
    East Tennessee
    Jason is a fantastic song - first there's Andy's clever and uncommon lyrics: "I've seen acts of every shade of terrible come from man-like creatures. And I've had the breath of liars blowing me off-course in my sails." Even better are the skillful chords and beats around those words.

    One of the best on English Settlement, an album with many great songs.
     
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  24. Thanks for starting the thread. I just started discovering XTC and have been tripping on Grass and Easter Theatre. I'll check out all these songs along with the thread.
     
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  25. George Co-Stanza

    George Co-Stanza Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    America
    I am still trying to wrap my head around the lyrics to a lot of their songs, but this definitely is one of my favorites from merely a lyrical perspective. And then the music is just as great!!

    Cool! There are still a bunch of XTC songs that have not gotten much attention from me, and some that I still have not heard (the bulk of songs from the first two albums, plus some b-sides), and I figure this thread will be me forcing myself to give them more attention.
     
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