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View Poll Results: Rate the BDA of XTC - BLACK SEA

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  • 10: Great Content, Surround Mix, and Fidelity

    23 82.14%
  • 9

    5 17.86%
  • 8

    0 0%
  • 7

    0 0%
  • 6

    0 0%
  • 5

    0 0%
  • 4

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  • 2

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  • 1: Poor Content, Surround Mix, and Fidelity

    0 0%
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Thread: XTC - BLACK SEA [Blu-Ray Audio]

  1. #26
    Senior Member drphibes's Avatar
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    Default Re: XTC - BLACK SEA [Blu-Ray Audio]

    Listened to this multiple times back to back. The music is new to me, and it's loads of fun. You can hear the beginnings more melodic and layered pop of the late 80s/early 90s, but still plenty of the early "punk" punchiness.

    The mix is solid. A few eye opening moments that I really enjoyed.

    Pans, used excessively, can be too gimmicky, but I like how the drums meander around in "Living Through Another Cuba" along with Andy's vocals echoing around. Well done.

    A 10 for me. Part of this score is once again a large amount of material in a compact package for a very solid price.

  2. #27
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    Default Re: XTC - BLACK SEA [Blu-Ray Audio]

    This one is a 10 for sure as its one of my favorite XTC albums which sounds even better now in glorious 5.1.
    After Drums and Wires showed that XTC was a band to be reckoned with as they brought the fun back to pop music in the late 70's/early 80's and this is the second album of at least 6 great albums in a row.
    XTC with some SW fairy dust thrown in and we have another fantastic BR to listen to for many years to come.
    Bring on some more of these classics please.......

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  4. #28
    Senior Member sjcorne's Avatar
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    Default Re: XTC - BLACK SEA [Blu-Ray Audio]

    First off, what a great album!

    I'm one of those lucky people that was introduced to XTC by the "Surround Sound Series", and I've thorougly enjoyed all the albums remixed so far. These guys were such talents and so versatile in style, it's a shame they didn't achieve as much success in the US and worldwide as they did in the UK.

    Unlike the other releases, I listened to the stereo version (2001 remaster is what's on Spotify) first to get really familiar with the album.

    Stylistically, this is like Drums & Wires mark II: XTC as a live band, VERY energetic and wonderfully offbeat-sounding. The difference is the transition from the sort of punk sound of D&W to a more accessible pop approach. The songs here are just better (IMO). I liked maybe 4 or 5 of the 10 songs in D&W, versus 8 out of 10 on Black Sea. I'll probably end up digging the two I haven't quite warmed up yet eventually. "Travels In Nihilon" is one of them. It's basically the "Complicated Game" of this album...the track that some see as a masterpiece and others just don't understand.

    The surround mix is nothing short of unbelievable. I'm one of those people who likes crazy old quad mixes with extreme separation and weird channel placements, like drums or bass pushed into a corner, so for a while I though SW's mixes were a bit on the conservative side. It's immediately clear that there is a serious increase in channel separation here compared to some other remixes of his. He totally outdoes all his previous XTC remix work. Perhaps this album is a favorite of his?

    I'll run through some highlights: "Generals and Majors" is wildly discrete with the rolling guitar part panned hard into the LF, and the acoustic guitar overdub is ONLY in the rears. The vocal echo effect in the second part of the chorus is especially cool in surround. At the end of that track the guitar bounces between the two rear channels.

    Throughout the entire album there is very little front-to-back bleed on rear guitar parts or the backing vocals. The backing vocals are sometimes even split between the rear corners so you can really hear the harmonies. It's fearless and very quad-like.

    The little offbeat touches that make the album so great are given new clarity and perfectly translate to surround. All of these parts are in the rears: those awesome hypnotic backing vocals on "Paper and Iron" ("paper....iron...won't buy....eden"), the anvil sound in "Towers of London", the deathly whisper in "Travels In Nihilon", and the weird phase effects in "Living Through Another Cuba". Way cool.

    Possibly the surround mix of the year, though I haven't heard them all yet. Have to give it a 10.

    Shame about the missing tapes for English Settlement...was sampling the stereo earlier and can already envision some great surround moments.

    "1, 2, 3, 4, 5", anyone?
    Last edited by sjcorne; 12-07-2017 at 05:03 AM.

    158 CD-4 LP, 120 SQ LP, 33 QS LP, 18 Q8, 69 SACD Multichannel, 55 DVD-A, 18 Dualdisc Multichannel, 12 DTS-CD, 11 BD-A

  5. #29
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    Default Re: XTC - BLACK SEA [Blu-Ray Audio]

    I am a big fan of the Beatles and also XTC but when it comes to 5.1 mixes, for me XTC are more popular than the Beatles...

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  7. #30
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    Default Re: XTC - BLACK SEA [Blu-Ray Audio]

    Haven't finished listening to the album but the layered vocals on Living through Another Cuba are an awesome touch. Also digging some chords I've never noticed before on Love at First Sight. More comments as I finish the album (and hopefully get onto the surround)...

    Sent from my HTC 2PZC100 using Tapatalk

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  9. #31
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    Default Re: XTC - BLACK SEA [Blu-Ray Audio]

    Just received my copy of XTC's Black Sea today and am now spinning the RBCD SW Stereo remaster.....WOW. Can't wait to spin the BD~A tonight.

    Only $16 delivered from ImportCD. What a bargain!

    I feel a solid 10 coming on........

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