Beeswax: Some B-Sides 1977–1982
Beeswax: Some B-Sides 1977–1982 is a compilation album by XTC released together with A-side collection Waxworks: Some Singles 1977-1982. All tracks written by Andy Partridge except tracks 2, 4, 5, 8, 10 by Colin Moulding
Drums and Wires
Drums and Wires is the third studio album by English band XTC, released on 17 August 1979, on the Virgin record label. The album marked the debut of Dave Gregory, who joined the band as lead guitarist following keyboardist Barry Andrews' departure in early 1979. Gregory went on to remain with the group up until 1998, during the recording of Apple Venus Volume 1, it reached No. 34 on the UK Albums Chart and No. 176 on the US Billboard 200. One single, "Making Plans for Nigel", was released from the album on 14 September 1979, reached No. 17 on the UK Singles Chart. It contained the original recording of "Ten Feet Tall", a re-recorded version of, released in March 1980 in the US only, as the band's first American single, designed to coincide with their first American tour. Certain versions of the album include "Life Begins at the Hop", released on 27 April 1979, reached No. 54 on the UK Singles Chart. In years, the album was rated at number 38 on Pitchfork's "The Top Albums of the 1970s" list; the first 20,000 copies of the LP were bundled with three songs.
The song "Life Begins at the Hop", written by Colin Moulding, was released as a 7" single before the original LP's release. It appears as an addition or substitution. All four songs were included on CD reissues starting in 1985. UK and Canadian vinyl editions came with an insert featuring lyrics to all the songs on Drums and Wires as well as XTC's previous albums, Go 2 and White Music, although it didn't list which album each song came from. Village Voice critic Robert Christgau wrote: "My reservations about this tuneful but willfully eccentric pop are ideological. With its playful clash of cross-currents it's just a'Complicated Game'—like everything else under the sun, Andy Partridge believes; this idea is an attitude rather than an analysis, it assures that the music's underlying passion will be formal. But I like games three-handed hearts or this record—which require concentration but not lifetime dedication, Partridge and Colin Moulding are moving toward a great art-pop mean that will set standards for the genre.
Catchy, interesting—and it rocks." "Making Plans for Nigel" and "Scissor Man" have both been covered by Primus on their EPs Miscellaneous Debris and Rhinoplasty, respectively. "Making Plans for Nigel" has been covered by Robbie Williams on his single Old Before I Die, by The Rembrandts on the tribute album A Testimonial Dinner: The Songs of XTC, by Nouvelle Vague on their self-titled debut album, by Pitchshifter on their single Genius. The Nigel character was referenced by The Enemy in the song "Be Somebody" from their album Music for the People; the 2001 reissue CD was digitally remastered by Ian Cooper at Metropolis Mastering. The final song on side two of the album, "Complicated Game", made its way onto television in 2014 as non-diegetic source music in the premier episode of AMC's Halt and Catch Fire, broadcast on 1 June 2014; the album was reissued on CD and Blu-ray in October 2014, boasting a new stereo and 5.1 surround sound mix of the album from renowned remixer Steven Wilson, as well as new liner notes from Partridge and Gregory, alternate mixes and nearly 40 demo and rehearsal tracks.
Partridge said of the new mix: "It's so good it's upped my opinion of the album." All tracks written except where noted. All tracks written except where noted. XTC Andy Partridge – vocals, synthesizers Colin Moulding – vocals, bass Dave Gregory – guitars, background vocals Terry Chambers – drums, background vocalsAdditional personnel Andy Partridge, Colin Moulding, Dave Gregory, Terry Chambers, Steve Warren, Hugh Padgham, Al Clark, Jumbo Van Reinen – Vernon Yard Male Voice Choir on "Roads Girdle the Globe" Dick Cuthell – trumpet on "That is the Way" Steve Lillywhite – production Hugh Padgham – engineer
Fuzzy Warbles Volume 5
Fuzzy Warbles Volume 5 is the fifth volume in the Fuzzy Warbles series, released in September 2004. The Fuzzy Warbles Series brings together demos and side projects from XTC founding member Andy Partridge. All songs written by Andy Partridge. Welcome to Volume 5 – 0:25 Young Cleopatra – 3:51 I Defy You Gravity – 4:18 Ice Jet Kiss – 0:36 Broomstick Rhythm – 3:37 Earn Enough for Us – 3:03 Dear God – 1:00 Crocodile – 3:49 Motorcycle Landscape – 4:38 Rook – 3:44 Don't You Ever Dare Call Me Chickenhead – 2:12 Mermaid Explanation – 1:05 Mermaid Smiled – 2:26 Aqua Deum – 2:36 Me and the Wind – 4:19 Smalltown – 4:01 Blue Overall – 3:09 Red Brick Dream – 1:22 Jacob's Ladder – 6:14 My Land Is Burning – 6:55 Andy Partridge – instruments and vocals on all tracks All songs were recorded at Andy's home except 14 at Ollie Studios, London and 19 at Tudor Studios, Swindon. Mastered by Ian Cooper at Metropolis Mastering, London Sleeve art by Andrew SwainsonThank you thank you Jiri Trnka, Jan Svankmajer, Karel Zamen, Gerry Anderson, George Pal, Roberta Leigh and all other puppet magic meisters.
Erica for naked yoga. Big thanks to Virgin Records for making this series possible
Dave Gregory (musician)
David Charles Gregory is an English guitarist from Swindon, best known for his work with the rock band XTC. He was a member of the group between the albums Drums and Wires and Nonsuch, contributing guitar and occasional string arrangements. Gregory was the lead guitarist of XTC, from prior to the recording of the Drums and Wires LP in 1979, when he replaced Barry Andrews, to his leaving the band in 1999, he contributed keyboards and backing vocals to their work. Since leaving XTC Gregory has been much in demand as a session musician with a number of artists, including Peter Gabriel, Aimee Mann, Marc Almond, Bingo Durango, Johnny Hates Jazz, Jason Donovan, Martin Newell, Louis Philippe, Mark Owen, R. Stevie Moore and others. Gregory, involved in Steve Hogarth's h-Band, has contributed to works by Porcupine Tree, including string arrangements on their sixth album, Lightbulb Sun, for Dublin group Pugwash. On 16 August 2009, English progressive rock band Big Big Train announced on their official blog that Gregory would be appearing as a guest musician on their sixth studio album, The Underfall Yard.
Gregory subsequently appeared on Big Big Train's Far Skies Deep Time EP. He was first listed as a full band member on English Electric Part One and has been on the subsequent albums since then. Gregory is a member of the group Tin Spirits, which feature ex Stamford Amp singer Mark Kilminster and guitarist Daniel Steinhardt and drummer Douglas Mussard; the band releases their first album, Wired to Earth, on 1 April 2011. Tin Spirits supported Marillion during the Marillionweekend at Port Zélande on 27 March 2011 in the Netherlands. Gregory guests on the 2012 album Not the Weapon but the Hand by Steve Hogarth and Richard Barbieri. In 2013, Gregory contributed to the book 1001 Guitars. Gregory suffers from diabetes. Dave Gregory's web pages Dave Gregory 2 hour audio interview on Rundgren Radio The Dave Gregory Story interview by Mark Powell at Cherry Red Records tinspirits.co.uk Big Big Train's official site
Nonsuch is the 12th studio album by the English band XTC, released on 27 April 1992. It follows Oranges & Lemons, was written in 1990, although Virgin Records would not let the band record the album until a staff change in 1991 greenlit the project; the album was produced by veteran producer Gus Dudgeon, while Fairport Convention's Dave Mattacks was brought in to play drums, as the band lacked a drummer at the time. Nonsuch is a less immediate and more restrained sounding album, carrying the band's psychedelic influences into new musical styles. 13 of the album's 17 tracks were written by guitarist/leader Andy Partridge, with the rest by bassist Colin Moulding. Unlike previous XTC albums, Partridge composed many of his songs using a keyboard. Due to the album's lyric content, which covers topics ranging from love and humanity to the Gulf War and P. T. Barnum, Nonsuch has been described as the band's darkest and most political album; the cover depicts an illustration of the former Nonsuch Palace, chosen after the band had settled on the title "nonesuch", which Partridge felt summed up the album's variety of music.
It was their third double album. Lead single "The Disappointed" reached number 33 in the UK and was nominated for an Ivor Novello award. Nonsuch charted at number 28 in the UK Albums Chart and number 97 on the US Billboard 200, as well as number one on Rolling Stone's College album chart; the album received critical acclaim from music critics, though the band soon left Virgin Records in the UK following a dispute over the cancelled third single from Nonsuch, "Wrapped in Grey". The album was nominated for the 1993 Grammy Award for Best Alternative Music Album. In 2013, a remixed and expanded version of Nonsuch was released. Mixed by Steven Wilson, the edition included new stereo, surround sound and instrumental mixes of the original album along with various demos and outtakes. After the band's double album Oranges & Lemons was released to acclaim from music critics and modest commercial success, XTC took a short break. Band leader Andy Partridge produced And Love For All, the second album by The Lilac Time, while compering for an unbroadcast children's game show named Matchmakers, Dave Gregory played for Johnny Hates Jazz, Marc Almond and Francesco Messina whilst producing for Cud, while Colin Moulding performed a special event concert with David Marx and the Refugees, a Swindon-based band that reunited him with former XTC member Barry Andrews.
The band soon reunited and began writing their next, tenth album, the soon-to-become Nonsuch, determined to record their new compositions in their native England, as recording Oranges & Lemons in Los Angeles had made the band absent from their families back in England. Having written some 32 songs for Nonsuch by 1991, it nonetheless took some time for the album to get off the ground; the band had issue with the musical director of their label Virgin Records, after seeing 32 songs written for Nonsuch, was convinced the band "could do better" and asked them to write other songs. Band leader Andy Partridge reflected: "We were ready, but our English record company refused all our songs." In Partridge's recollection, the director threatened that Virgin would drop the band if the band don't write an album "of twelve Top Ten guaranteed singles," and noted that this attitude held the band up in recording Nonsuch, which they refused to rewrite, believing its songs to be among the greatest they had written.
With the band sitting on the material, the director left the label a year and his replacement liked the band's content, hurrying the band to record the album. The band's initial choice of producers for the album were not available; the band wanted Steve Lillywhite and Hugh Padgham, both of whom the band worked with before, to co-produce the album, but Lillywhite was unavailable due a holiday with his wife Kirsty MacColl and Padgham did not want to produce the album alone, while the band found that hiring John Paul Jones as producer would be too expensive, a deal to work with Bill Bottrell, who had worked on Dangerous by Michael Jackson, fell through. With Partridge becoming so desperate to record Nonsuch that he "would have done it with the window cleaner," eccentric English producer Gus Dudgeon was the band's final choice, having been enticed by his work with the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band, he produced the album, recorded at Chipping Norton Recording Studios, between July and October 1991. When Dudgeon arrived in the studio and Partridge saw his attire and expensive lifestyle, he felt "he was wrong, but by that time it was difficult to go back."
The band nicknamed him Guff Dungeon "because he was so flatulent." Partridge reflected: "Gus is old school, full of blusters and bluff'Elton gave me this Rolls-Royce and I said,'Oh Elton darling...'" Dudgeon had heard of the tense relationship between Partridge and producer Todd Rundgren during the Skylarking sessions, "had come in armed with a heavy supply for vitriol. Dudgeon kept a tape of him and Partridge joking in the sessions and played it to party guests. Nonetheless, Partridge commented that "ultimately he wasn't the right producer for us."At Gregory's suggestion, Dave Mattacks of Fairport Convention played drums on the album. When discussing "what drummer, as a fantasy, would like to work with," Mattacks was top of the band's list; the same week, a friend of the band saw him perform live w
Mummer is the sixth studio album by the English band XTC, released on 30 August 1983. It reached No. 51 on the UK album chart and No. 145 on the U. S. Billboard album charts; the album title refers to a Mummers play. Working titles considered for the album were Fallen From The Fruit, it spawned three UK singles. This was the final album that drummer Terry Chambers appeared on with XTC, as he quit the group during the recording sessions, frustrated with the band's decision to becoming a studio-based act, he was replaced by Peter Phipps. Andy Partridge said "Until early 1982, our work was like black-and-white TV. Mummer was the first in full colour -- bright sky blue." The album was delayed many months by Virgin Records. It was supposed to be released by Epic Records on 26 May 1983 in the U. S. A. but the label thought it was too pastoral for American audiences. It was issued in the U. S. by Geffen Records in February 1984. "Wonderland" was the only single issued by Geffen from the album. The only promotional public appearance made by the band for this album was in late 1983 when they appeared on the BBC-TV show Pebble Mill At One where they lip-synced to "Love on a Farmboy's Wages".
A promotional video was made for the "Wonderland" single. Five more videos were made in July 1983 for the television documentary program Play At Home. All songs composed by Andy Partridge, except where noted. XTC Andy Partridge - vocals, saxophone on "Great Fire" Colin Moulding - vocals, bass Dave Gregory - vocals, keyboard, piano Terry Chambers - drums on "Beating of Hearts", "Wonderland" and the bonus track "Toys"Additional staff Peter Phipps - drums on remaining tracks Steve Nye - producer, mini-korg on "Wonderland", mellotron on "Elements" Nigel Warren-Green – strings on "Great Fire" Gavyn Wright – strings on "Great Fire" Gavin Cochrane - album sleeve photography Bob Sargeant – producer
XTC was an English rock band formed in Swindon in 1972 who were active until 2006. Led by songwriters Andy Partridge and Colin Moulding, the band gained popularity during the rise of punk and new wave in the 1970s playing in a variety of styles that ranged from angular guitar riffs to elaborately arranged pop; because the group did not fit into contemporary trends, they achieved only sporadic commercial success in the UK and US, but attracted a considerable cult following. They have since been recognised for their influence on Britpop and power pop acts. Partridge and Moulding met at a bar in the early 1970s and subsequently formed a glam outfit with drummer Terry Chambers; the band's name and line-up changed and it was not until 1975 that they were known as XTC. In 1977, the group debuted on Virgin Records and, for the next five years, were noted for their energetic live performances, they aspired to be "completely original", to the distaste of their peers, refused to play conventional punk rock, instead synthesising influences from ska, 1960s pop, dub music and the avant-garde.
Partridge, XTC's frontman and primary songwriter, insisted that the band was "blatantly just pop music. We were a new pop group. That's all." After 1982's English Settlement, the band stopped concert touring and became a studio-based project centred on Partridge and guitarist Dave Gregory. They continued to produce more progressive recordings, including The Big Express, Oranges & Lemons and Apple Venus Volume 1. A spin-off group, the Dukes of Stratosphear, was invented as a one-off excursion into 1960s-style psychedelia, but as XTC's music evolved, the distinctions between the two bands lessened. Due to poor management, they never received a share of profits from record sales, of which there were millions, nor from touring revenue, forcing them into debt throughout the 1980s and 1990s. In 1993, they went on strike against Virgin, citing an unfair recording contract, extricated themselves from the label sometime after. XTC's best-known albums are the Todd Rundgren-produced Skylarking, they had a total of 10 albums and 6 singles that reached the UK top 40, including "Making Plans for Nigel", "Sgt.
Rock" and "Senses Working Overtime". In the US, "Mayor of Simpleton" was their highest-charting single, while "Dear God" was controversial for its anti-religious message The group inspired tribute bands, tribute albums, fan conventions, fanzines across the UK, US and Japan. In 2006, Partridge announced that his creative partnership with Moulding had disintegrated, leaving XTC "in the past tense". Moulding and Chambers reunited as the duo TC&I in the late 2010s. Partridge and Gregory remain musically active. Andy Partridge and Colin Moulding grew up on Penhill council estate in Swindon. Partridge jokingly characterised the community as being populated entirely by people with physical, mental or emotional defects. In the 1960s, he was a fan of contemporary pop groups like the Beatles, but was intimidated by the process of learning guitar; when the Monkees grew popular. He became interested in joining a music group, he recalled watching local guitarist Dave Gregory performing Jimi Hendrix-style songs at churches and youth clubs: "Sort of acid-skiffle.
I thought,'Ah, one day I'll play guitar!' But I didn't think I would be in the same band as this kid on the stage." Partridge obtained a guitar and taught himself how to play it with no formal training. At the age of 15, he wrote his first song, titled "Please Help Me", attracted the nickname "Rocky" for his early guitar mastery of the Beatles' "Rocky Raccoon". By the early 1970s, his music tastes had transitioned "from the Monkees to having a big binge on this Euro-avant-garde stuff. I got in deep." One of his first bands was called "Stiff Beach", formed in August 1970. In early 1972, Partridge's evolving group settled into "Star Park", a four-piece that featured himself with guitarist Dave Cartner, drummer Paul Wilson, a bassist nicknamed "Nervous Steve". In 1972, Partridge became closer acquainted with Gregory, a diabetic suffering from a bout of depression, while working as an assistant at the Bon Marche record shop in Swindon. Gregory was played the Mahavishnu Orchestra's album The Inner Mounting Flame, which he called "one of the watershed moments in my musical education."
Partridge met Colin Moulding at the Stage Bar on Swindon’s Old Town's Union Row known as Long's. Moulding had been playing bass since 1970 "because I liked music I thought that playing a bass, with four strings, would be infinitely easier than playing a guitar, with six strings; that was a horrible misconception!". At the end of 1972, Moulding and drummer Terry Chambers joined Partridge's band, replacing Nervous Steve and Paul Wilson, the group was renamed "Star Park". Other members would join and leave the group. After Star Park opened for Thin Lizzy in May 1973, the band renamed themselves the Helium Kidz. Partridge's musical conceptions were "blown away" upon hearing the New York Dolls: "I just wanted to play three chords again and get out my mom's makeup and stuff." He subsequently wrote hundreds of songs for the Helium Kidz, some demo tapes were sent to Decca Records. NME ran a small profile on the "up and coming" band, which consisted of Partridge, Moulding and guitarist Dave Cartner: "They aspire to attain the impossible dream of being able to throw a TV or two out of the window of an American hotel and have no one complain."
This version of the group lasted until 1975, when the Helium Kidz decided to rebrand themselves and change their music t