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Towers of Swindon
April 27, 2011 9:47 AM   Subscribe

Swindon Viewpoint has recently released a glorious cache of rare videos from everyone's favorite English Settlers XTC! Please to be finding early live performaces by the handsome devils, early studio versions of your favorites, earlier still performances by The Helium Kidz, and even a lovely tour of Swindon with mad genius Andy Partridge! (Then with hair!)

Via Chalkhills.

Enjoy!
posted by Krazor (23 comments total) 38 users marked this as a favorite

 
Thanks! This will keep me occupied till the 2030 XTC reunion tour.
posted by chinston at 10:35 AM on April 27, 2011


I've always found XTC's existence to be very depressing on a personal level because I figured, as a teenager, that I had absolutely no hope of ever being a successful musician if a band as awesome as XTC could exist and not be the hugest thing in the whole world.

But I've said it before and I'll keep saying it forever: Andy Partridge is my favorite Beatle.
posted by The World Famous at 10:59 AM on April 27, 2011 [5 favorites]


This AND the David Lowery post?

TY!
posted by humboldt32 at 11:20 AM on April 27, 2011


I love XTC and have great respect for Partridge, but his devotion to unearthing and releasing every demo he ever recorded, instead of writing and recording at least one proper solo album, is frustrating.
posted by davebush at 1:47 PM on April 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


Andy Partridge is my favorite Beatle

Can I get this on a shirt?
posted by LSK at 2:03 PM on April 27, 2011


Can I get this on a shirt?

Only if it is in quotes with correct attribution to The World Famous.
posted by The World Famous at 2:24 PM on April 27, 2011


Only if it is in quotes with correct attribution to The World Famous.

I was thinking just the quote, since he's my favorite Beatle too.
posted by LSK at 2:56 PM on April 27, 2011


The single stupidest thing I ever did in my life was blowing off seeing XTC open for the Police in 1981. For a long time XTC was my stock answer to "what's your favorite band," often without much thought, but many years later, when I pretty much have moved on, since they're obviously done, I look back at just how I got from them, they're still at the very top of the heap. I learned so much about songwriting dissecting their songs, and Melt The Guns in particular was the sole reason I bought a fretless bass for the first time. Colin Moulding, in 5 minutes, caused me to completely re-assess What it was that I was doing with a bass. I owe him for that.

Love Chalkhills, too. Relph has run a quality site for a long, long time. The chalkhills mailing list was my very first online community, and there were some quality writers contributing there in the late nineties. Harrison Sherwood (who blogged for a while as Neddie Jingo) got the gig writing the 5000 word essay for their box set on the strength of his posts there. I've got about 10 un-read Chalkhills digests in my inbox. I can hardly read them because it just makes me sad that there's no new music. It was such a vibrant list during the Apple Venus days.
posted by Devils Rancher at 5:11 PM on April 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


I pretty much have moved on, since they're obviously done

It really is 'over', isn't it, and this thread only confirms that; open for more than eight hours, and only 8 comments ...
posted by woodblock100 at 5:33 PM on April 27, 2011


I'm just glad to see it made a difference to someone, at the very least. Looks like everyone here was already a fan, though. Would have been nice to make a convert.
posted by Krazor at 6:10 PM on April 27, 2011


I was just kidding, LSK. If you have shirts made, I will buy one.
posted by The World Famous at 6:18 PM on April 27, 2011


Hey, stop it! No reason to get glum about the comment count. This is a great find--thanks, Krazor.

Those guys were impressively tight right from the beginning. Those Helium Kidz videos are fun to see.

I also really liked the 1978 videos with Barry Andrews. He has serious stage presence. I like that iteration of the band, but I can also see how they clashed--he had such a presence, that it changed the balance somewhat away from Partridge. The other thing I noticed, or was reminded of, in these videos, is how good of a drummer Terry Chambers is.
posted by umbĂș at 7:23 PM on April 27, 2011


Well, isn't this a treat. For the longest time I couldn't decide between XTC and Robyn Hitchcock as my heap toppers. These guys burned brighter, but I'm afraid Robyn has won the race.
posted by jetsetsc at 7:51 PM on April 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


"Generals and Majors" wasn't a protest song, it was a prophecy.
posted by bardic at 9:10 PM on April 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


I found Wasp Star Venus 2 at a Borders when I was a kid. Loved it so much.

And if you're getting glum, look at the Favorites, not the comments.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 9:54 PM on April 27, 2011


This will keep me occupied till the 2030 XTC reunion tour.

Please don't get my hopes up. I can't even imagine what an obscene amount of money I would be willing to pay if there were ever such a thing as an XTC tour.

I missed this post earlier because I actually did something other than read MetaFilter after work today. So now I will have plenty to distract me from grading all the papers I now have....

Devils Rancher, I miss Chalkhills. It was, in fact, my very first online community. But I kind of drifted away when the posts got to be fewer and shorter.
posted by DiscourseMarker at 10:35 PM on April 27, 2011


"Generals and Majors" wasn't a protest song, it was a prophecy.

I get the same feeling from "Living through another Cuba."
posted by DiscourseMarker at 10:36 PM on April 27, 2011


Missing a 'davegregory' tag ...
posted by woodblock100 at 10:48 PM on April 27, 2011


"if there were ever such a thing as an XTC tour."

Last I heard the dudes pretty much hate each other.

Just like The Beatles!
posted by bardic at 11:39 PM on April 27, 2011


Statements: "Pop is vacuous." "There aren't really any good pop bands, not on the same [musical/lyrical] level as [band name]." "It all follows the same. old. formula." "Never been a big pop fan. I prefer [old time/current favourite]." etc, etc...

My stock reply: "XTC."

Ususal follow-up comment: "...Right! Man, they were good!

Gets 'em every time.
posted by Zack_Replica at 8:32 PM on April 28, 2011


And I'm convinced the entire course of musical history would have been changed - if only they had chosen a better name (without the 'druggy' overtones ...).

I - for one - had heard of them, but never gave a listen, automatically tossing them out because of the name. It wasn't until a friend basically forced me to give them a chance that I learned what it was all about ...
posted by woodblock100 at 9:47 PM on April 28, 2011


I - for one - had heard of them, but never gave a listen, automatically tossing them out because of the name.

Ha. So, in 1985, I was in middle school and I was really into metal. I had exhausted the resources I had for finding new metal bands to listen to and had started branching out on my own, buying tapes based on what I read in various zines and whatnot. I usually chose what to listen to based on the name and album art of the band. And I was so, so disappointed when, on those criteria, I bought and first listened to a Grateful Dead album.
posted by The World Famous at 9:39 AM on April 29, 2011


So I just wandered back in and clicked a few more links and sampled some old favorites elsewhere ("Then She Appeared" "Love on a Farmboy's Wages" "Burning With Optimism's Flames" "Mayor of Simpleton") to see if I really did want to get started on replacing all those old LPs moldering in my sister-in-law's damp basement.

Yes I do!

Thanks for the nudge.
posted by notyou at 7:11 PM on May 4, 2011


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