Senses Working Overtime: XTC and Dukes of Stratosphear Song-by-song

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Lance LaSalle, Dec 25, 2021.

  1. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

    My intention with this thread, starting Monday, December 27th, is to discuss the music of XTC and The Dukes of Stratosphear.

    I will be going through all of XTC and The Dukes of Stratosphear's songs, one by one, day by day: not only their originals, but covers too. This will include other pseudonymous side projects that were ultimately released under the XTC umbrella (The Colonel, The Three Wise Men, The Arguers, Terry and the Lovemen, etc.)
    However, in the interests of brevity, bona fide solo projects by members of the XTC will not be given special attention to, other than in passing mention.

    I will not to pretend to be the most knowledgeable expert of all of XTC's catalogue -- especially when it comes to side projects -- not even the foremost expert on this forum! But I do think I can reliably post one song per day and hopefully the experts presents will chime in with any relevant information.

    I will also be rating songs on a 1-5 scale, 5 being the best. I like doing this simply because, a) for some reason it helps me to focus my mind critically when I'm listening and b) although individual users' ratings mean nothing, collectively, when averaged, they are an interesting statistic. And I like to make playlists from the more highly-rated songs!

    Having said that one does not have to rate songs to participate in the thread. The main thing is to discuss the music of XTC, song-by-song and learn more about the music of this incredibly talented band.

    One more thing: besides solo projects, I do not plan on holding up unreleased/bootleg songs for rating; that does not mean that they cannot be discussed or referenced in their appropriate era by those who know about them; it only means that I won't make a separate entry for them. It is a fairly big and surprisingly sprawling catalogue.

    Ditto for side projects, where members may have contributed instrumental parts or backing vocals: they will not be held up separately. So, for example, I will not be separately holding up for discussion the songs on Andy Partridges various side projects, or his demo albums Fuzzy Warbles (etc,etc.) Only songs that, at one point or another can really be included as a real XTC or Dukes of Stratosphear release.
    I did a lot of thinkinga bout this over the last few months: originally I planned to title this thread the "songs of Partridge and Moulding" and go full-on completist but over time my concept has evolved; Andy in particular is too prolific and, ultimately, solo projects are best saved for another thread; who knows, I may feel differently at the end of this thread's run.

    For clarity's sake, the albums I plan to go through are as follows:
    • 3D EP
    • White Music
    • Go 2
    • Go 2+
    • Drums And Wires
    • Black Sea
    • English Settlement
    • Mummer
    • The Big Express
    • 25 O'Clock
    • Skylarking
    • Psonic Psunspot
    • Oranges And Lemons
    • Nonsuch
    • Apple Venus Volume One
    • Wasp Star: Apple Venus Volume Two
    Any live albums will be included in one day only discussions.

    Bonus tracks, non-album singles, B-sides, soundtrack songs and other rarities will be discussed after the album they are associated with -- see any of my other song-by-song threads for a template.
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2021
    Fred1, On_the_dunes, M321115 and 44 others like this.
  2. ARL

    ARL Forum Resident

    I'm in, as long as I can handle this and the Kinks thread at the same time!
  3. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

    Yes, I have edited. I didn't realize that I could do that and I actually asked a Gort to do it, but now I've done it myself.
  4. kouzie

    kouzie Forum Resident

    Batavia, IL
    You're busy man Lance! But how can I not join in! Many many thanks in advance!
  5. Bnk

    Bnk Forum Resident

    Unfortunately, I can only chip in for the Drums and Wires/Black Sea eras (when XTC were threatening to be massive in the UK) but it will be great to hear SHF critiques on everything after that especially.
  6. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

    That'll be fine! :) These threads typically have people come and go.
  7. vince

    vince Stan Ricker's son-in-law

    If you're counting "GO+", why not "Take Away/The Lure Of Salvage" by "Mr. Partridge"?
    When released on CD, it WAS credited to XTC......
    uzn007, Beamish13, PhoffiFozz and 3 others like this.
  8. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

    You're right. Well...Ok.
    PhoffiFozz, kouzie and vince like this.
  9. Bob C

    Bob C Forum Resident

    So Cal
    Me neither but I'll follow along and chip in where I can.
    kouzie and Lance LaSalle like this.
  10. Jamsterdammer

    Jamsterdammer The Great CD in the Sky

    Málaga, Spain
    Great initiative! One of my favorite bands. I'll try to keep up (in parallel with the Brian Eno SxS thread)
    prymel, Mr. Bewlay and Lance LaSalle like this.
  11. shakti

    shakti Senior Member

    Ramnes, Norway
    I’ll try to chip in when I can. Awesome thread idea/ambition. One of my favourite bands, especially when I consider them on a song by song basis.
    Lance LaSalle likes this.
  12. Telemark

    Telemark Forum Resident

    The best British guitar-pop band since the Beatles. So glad you’re doing this, Lance! I’m all in.
  13. Shriner

    Shriner Forum Resident

    Ann Arbor, MI, USA
    I'm in for this as well. There are only a few bands/artists where I feel I know the material inside-and-out to comment -- and XTC is one of them.
    tunza60 and Lance LaSalle like this.
  14. DaverJ

    DaverJ Forum Resident

    East Tennessee
    Same - this is going to be a nice trip down memory lane.
  15. Bob C

    Bob C Forum Resident

    So Cal
    I'm one of those that never quite got The Beatles comparison but that's OK. I like 'em both!
  16. Yeppers41

    Yeppers41 Forum Resident

    Sydney, Australia
    I'm very curious to see if anyone actually enjoys these tracks. I've always been fascinated with remixing and dubbing since the early 80's, but, IMHO, this EP and album wasn't a great example of the artform. (Though it's funny to imagine an alternate universe where he ended up collaborating with Madonna).
    uzn007 likes this.
  17. Telemark

    Telemark Forum Resident

    I would never say XTC sound like the Beatles. What I would say is that nobody else since the Beatles wrote so many indelible tunes or played them with such heart and inventiveness.
  18. pablo fanques

    pablo fanques Somebody's Bad Handwroter

    Poughkeepsie, NY
    I was very late to your brilliant R.E.M. thread but I'll be 'hear' for day one. Bob on!
  19. Mr. Bewlay

    Mr. Bewlay It Is The Business Of The Future To Be Dangerous.

    Denver CO
    Awesome! One of my absolute favourite bands, and I have all their official releases from English Settlement. Apart from the Waxworks compilation I don't have anything before that. I don't know why. I should really rectify that.
    croquetlawns likes this.
  20. PhoffiFozz

    PhoffiFozz Forum Resident

    I'll try to keep up and be in here. (Something I'm REALLY bad at on here). But I'll also let everyone know up front: I'm pretty biased. Although there are some songs I'm not AS crazy about, I pretty much love the entire XTC/Dukes catalog. Really love it it. Find it unique, innovative, creative & diverse. In all eras and from both principal songwriters.
  21. fairaintfair

    fairaintfair I Buried Paul

    SF Bay Area
    I’m in!
  22. plentyofjamjars67

    plentyofjamjars67 Forum Resident

    I'll try and participate as much as I can. I like these threads for hearing a song in a new light, and of course the discussion. I'm certain there are several songs that will need my support (we all have those, right? :D)
    YardByrd likes this.
  23. uzn007

    uzn007 Pack Rat

    Raleigh, N.C.
    They certainly could sound like the Beatles when they wanted to, but it's more about the breadth of ideas for me, the way they started out as this fairly basic "new wave" band before recording a brilliant and brilliantly-unique catalog.
  24. moomaloo

    moomaloo All-round good egg

    I’m also in - if I can keep up…

    Could we also include some collector’s notes as we go? - picture sleeves, album pressings etc..?
    Plan9 and Bob C like this.
  25. George Co-Stanza

    George Co-Stanza Forum Resident

    I did a thread similar to this a few years ago (link below) and it was a blast. I haven't listened to a lot of XTC lately, and am off on too many other musical tangents to dive back into XTC with both feet at the moment in order to be a frequent contributor to this thread, but I will certainly read and chime in when something hits me. :)

    XTC Song of the Day thread

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