Hey Todd - XTC "Things We Did On Grass (1986-2000) [Archive] - Audio & Video Forums


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12-17-2004, 08:49 PM
After sitting on the shelf for way too long, I pulled out your XTC comp from a few years back and played it again today. Man, what a fun comp. Some great tunes on there, such as "Stupidly Happy", "The Ugly Underneath", "Humble Daisy", "We're All Light", "Grass" and others.

It was quite enjoyable to revisit an old comp. I should do more of that, considering I've got a hundred or two on the rack. Thanks.


12-17-2004, 09:06 PM
I poured over it for weeks. I really tried hard to make it flow and I spent a lot of time with those segues. Problem is, those segues and transitions are lost on those not familiar with the original material. And for those who are, they would probably prefer to do their own comp. I still listen to that comp from time to time, but I'd be remiss if I didn't listen to Skylarking in its entirety.

Glad you liked it. XTC is music's most woefully underappreciated bands ever.

12-19-2004, 06:02 AM

XTC are excellent.


12-19-2004, 09:22 AM
XTC is music's most woefully underappreciated bands ever.
I don't know, we've talked about this before. They're loved without reservation by their fans like many of us around here, but I really think they are a little too weird and quirky and even dissonant and dischordant at times to have real mass appeal. Even a big fan like me was a little turned off the first couple times I listened to The Big Express. It just seemed so bright and chock full of sounds. Kind of an overload. But I could think of about a million bands and albums that are much more underappreciated than XTC. I mean, XTC even had hit songs during their career! Without even digging into obscure bands, ever heard that classic Malpractice album by Dr. Feelgood? Wow, I was just thinking about that one this morning and songs are bouncing around in my head. What a great sound!

If you want to hear a new take on early XTC mixed with the Jam and a dab of Gang of Four, give a listen to the Futureheads debut some of us have been talking about around here. Not universally loved, but close to it. You can listen to the album at http://www.hyperlaunch.com/futureheads/drownedinsound/ if you have a decent connection.

12-19-2004, 01:11 PM
I don't know if XTC's underappreciated or if people just don't get the chance to hear them.

Their quirkyness has kept XTC at an arms length from the US market because the ultraconservative US market decision makers says they are " little too weird and quirky and even dissonant and dischordant at times" for American tastes. Most knowledgable American rock fans have never heard more than 3 XTC songs (Mayor of Simpleton, Dear God, Making Plans for Nigel, maybe a couple of others) in their lives. They haven't been given the chance to. Clearchannel is afraid of "quirk".

See Davey, I'm OK with music that doesn't have mass appeal (obvious, I guess) and I don't think that the best art should have truly mass appeal under any circunstances. It can't be for everyone, if it is, then it's too vanilla.

XTC is quirky as hell, no argument from me. Too quirky for them to ever get to REM or U2 status, but I think that most XTC fans like XTC a lot more than most fans of U2 like U2. Most U2 fans are pretty casual about it. People like U2, but XTC fans are nuts about 'em.

If everybody loved XTC, the pop culture world would be a VERY different place.

Futureheads are OK. I lean towards the quirky, herky jerky tunes (go figure) that are so reminiscent of Drums and Wires. But D&W eats the Futureheads for breakfast.

12-19-2004, 03:09 PM
Futureheads are OK. I lean towards the quirky, herky jerky tunes (go figure) that are so reminiscent of Drums and Wires. But D&W eats the Futureheads for breakfast.
Yea, I can't argue with you there. How many bands of the caliber of XTC have come along in the last few years? But the Futureheads album is only their debut. Compare it to the early XTC albums like White Music or the mostly dismissible Go2, neither which I like very much. Seems like the Futureheads came out pretty strong and are making a very strong showing on both critics and fans end-of-the-year lists too. Definitely a bright spot on the rock landscape, but as I've said before, I wouldn't recommend it over the best albums from their influences, namely XTC, the Buzzcocks, Gang of Four and the Jam. But if you have all those and are looking for something new to light your wick in 2004......

12-19-2004, 06:38 PM

XTC is no normal band. Their music is simple yet complex as all heck, and for the most part, there is no middle of the road for XTC listeners.

You either can't stand 'em or Love 'em.

I love their music, it is powerful and moving, but "getting" XTC is somewhat mood/situational, kind of like Pink Floyd. i.e you just don't spin "The Wall" everyday...

They are kind of like the Beatles of the 80's, similar to the Stranglers could be the modern verison of the Doors.

Regardless, I think they kick it and recommend them to the intellectual, rocking, and somewhat flexible rock afficianado.

"Black Sea" is frikking way excellent.