From the Vault...



© Geffen Records

Year of Release: 1992

track listing
  • The Ballad of
    Peter Pumpkinhead
  • My Bird Performs
  • Dear Madam Barnum
  • Humble Daisy
  • The Smartest Monkeys
  • The Disappointed
  • Holly Up On Poppy
  • Crocodile
  • Rook
  • Omnibus
  • The Wave
  • Then She Appeared
  • War Dance
  • Wrapped In Grey
  • The Ugly Underneath
  • Bungalow
  • Books Are Burning

  • WSVNRadio Archives
    A B C D E F G H I J K L M
    N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

    XTC related sites:
    XTC Website
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    XTC: short for Ecstasy...

    Chicago radio station WXRT has always featured the band XTC, and just recently, the group's original albums were given the green light for reissue on CD. In hearing their Best-Of compilation, Upsy Daisy Assortment, it's quite obvious that their music is very interesting to listen to; and as many Best-Of/Greatest Hits compilations are, it's arguable that many songs that were released on original albums do not get the Best-Of treatment. Therefore, it's best to listen to the original albums as a whole, and determine the fact that XTC's music is best to listen to, from start to finish, as they happened on each release.

    Surpringly, only two songs from Nonsuch made Upsy Daisy Assortment, and its arguable on how other tunes didn't make the Best-Of. "The Ballad Of Peter Pumpkin" (quite obvious on this one being recognized as Best-Of material; it's poppish sound definitely has the Beatles influence, especially on Paul McCartney's behalf.) "The Disappointed" is the other Best-Of track, and its another good tune for that, being very poppish in sound, and an easy head-bopping, enjoyable (not disappointing) song. "Dear Madam Barnum" is a great tune, and why it didn't make the best-of is beyond me.

    "My Bird Performs" is just ok, where "Humble Daisy" is a nice pleasant tune, and again, it could be seen as a McCartney-inspired track. The bass line stands out on "The Hardest Monkeys", a song that has an almost Elvis Costello meets pop, more than new wave, when Costello first started out his career. "Holly Up On Poppy" is another pop number; not as energetic as other tunes, and "Crocodile" is interesting, and could be a possible contender on a Best-Of and/or multiple CD Anthology.

    "Rook" is another great potential; definitely Paul McCartney-inspired, from such tunes in the later years of The Beatles -- White Album, maybe even Sgt. Pepper.

    "Omnibus" maybe the only least listened-to song on this release, likewise "The Wave." Returning to standard pop is "Then She Appeared", a song, again, that is fair, yet enjoyable. More enjoyable is "War Dance," having a sound compared to Duran Duran; definitely pop rock.

    1970s pop (McCartney and The Raspberries) best describes the ballad "Wrapped In Grey." (Almost) New Wave, Pop Rock (obvious) describes "The Ugly Underneath." Pure ballad pop best describes "Bungalow". Medium-tempo McCartney pop has the closing number, "Books Are Burning."

    It's easy to see the influence of the later years of The Beatles on Nonsuch. Other influences are heard also, such as the likes as Paul McCartney/Wings, Elvis Costello, Duran Duran, and The Kinks. Getting a "Best-Of" XTC is not enough; it's best to get their original albums, and enjoy the many songs this band from England has to offer.

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    Previous Review: #743
    Traffic--John Barleycorn Must Die
    Next Review: #745
    Mariah Carey--Butterfly