XTC Skylarking - Andy Partridge AMA / news

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Thought I'd start a new thread for Skylarking with some of the recent links.
Andy's Reddit AMA from yesterday.
Included very little in terms of surround stuff, but a lot of interesting stuff otherwise.
Regarding releasing stems: "I wouldn't mind, but I don't think we own the rights for doing that. Universal still own the rights -- we are merely leasing the rights for a while. Any XTC things that come out on APE are merely temporary leases -- unfortunately, we still don't own them."

Regarding the order of 5.1 releases: "It's simply a case of what can be found in the Universal vaults -- which we have to pay for them to search! It's really what they can find -- that's why they haven't been in chronological order."

Many more questions and some answers continued on his twitter.

Older news:
Newish book from Andy about XTC songs.
Todd Rundgren on WTF:
Summary of the story with Andy's responses on twitter.
 
I was the one that asked Andy about the order of the 5.1 releases. All I really wanted to know was which album he HOPED would be released next in 5.1 surround (after "Skylarking"), but he didn't really answer that way, so that's that.
My hope is for either "English Settlement" or "Black Sea", but I would also take "Mummer" or "The Big Express" next over the later or earlier albums.
 
I'll take whatever order they give, just as long as we get them all eventually!

I'm sort of in the same mindset, but I would still prefer to get any and all of the 1980s albums released first before releasing "Apple Venus", "Wasp Star", and the first two albums.
AV and WS both have some amazing contributions from Andy Partridge, but Colin's songs on those albums are all duds IMHO.
Then, on the first two albums, they weren't mature enough as songwriters, and neither of those albums feature the amazing contributions of Mr David Gregory.

So that's why the 80s albums represent (for me) the pinnacle of XTC. Great songs from both Andy and Colin, plus great instrumental prowess from David Gregory.
What's not to love?! :) :banana:
 
While we all continue to wait for the upcoming CD/Blu-Ray edition of "Skylarking", here are some new vinyl reissues from XTC (for those of you like these kind of platters):

XTC - Skylarking - 2016 Deluxe Vinyl Edition (double vinyl preorder)
large6123.jpg


A deluxe double vinyl version of the Corrected Polarity edition XTC's ever popular Todd Rundgren produced Skylarking.

Including:

* 2 x 45rpm, 200g heavyweight vinyl
* 12" 16 page booklet with song notes by band members
* Lyric sheet
* Cut from corrected polarity master
* CD of corrected polarity master
* Both album sleeves - sleeve as released and original proposed design
* All contents packaged in a sturdy slipcase

A definitive edition of one of Pop's finest albums, produced by one of Pop's best producers and performed by one of Pop's greatest groups at their most popular.

Pre-order for 15th July release. UK orders will be sent by courier.

XTC - English Settlement - Deluxe Vinyl Edition (double vinyl preorder)
large6122.jpg


A deluxe double vinyl version of XTC's 1982 classic English Settlement.

Including:

* 2 x 33rpm, 200g heavyweight vinyl
* 12" 16 page booklet with song notes by band members
* Lyric sheet
* 2016 cut from original half-inch master sources
* CD mastered from the same original master sources
* All contents packaged in a sturdy slipcase

While looking for the (still 'lost in the archives') multi-track tapes to enable Steven Wilson to undertake new stereo and 5.1 surround mixes of the album, the original half-inch master tapes were discovered and used as source masters from which engineer John Dent cut new lacquers for this heavyweight vinyl edition.

An album which set standards on its release sounds, if anything, even better now.

Pre-order for 15th July release. UK orders will be sent by courier.

:)
 
English Settlement looks tempting - almost for the packaging alone! Andy always does such a great job in that department. I have all the original UK vinyl up through Big Express and ES is by far the best sounding of the lot. Skylarking looks pretty as well but I have the previous 45 RPM set so I will pass.

Probably :rolleyes:
 
Latest tweet from Andy P:

I'm sending for inclusion in the SKYLARKING bluray,Colin's and my demos,42 tracks in all.The album in demo form and other tracks from then.

:)
 
I picked up the English Settlement deluxe vinyl set and it is very handsomely done. Although I've yet to spin the vinyl I did listen to the CD (marked as 'flat transfer') and it's a significant improvement to the previous CD mastering which suffered from a rather fatiguing hi-end boost. For those who wish to upgrade, the standalone CD is available through Burning Shed:

https://www.burningshed.com/store/ape/product/405/7759/

I've heard chatter that this LP was mixed and/or recorded digitally but Dave Gregory, who provides excellent technical notes, makes no mention of any digital technology used in the chain:

The control room was equipped with 2 Studer A800 24-track tape machines and a 32-channel Helios desk...

Anxious to keep the 'Fi' as 'Hi' as possible, Hugh (Padgham) took the decision to mix down to 1/2" tape, running it at 30 i.p.s., and having heard the results Virgin Records agreed to allow us to release it as a 2 record set...


Man, I do hope those multitrack tapes are found. This would make for a stunning surround release. It is more sparsely arranged than most of their albums but there's still plenty of layers of cleverly-crafted guitar interplay that would benefit greatly from having more 'breathing' room. And it may be their finest sounding album, fidelity wise.
 
Man, I do hope those multitrack tapes are found. This would make for a stunning surround release. It is more sparsely arranged than most of their albums but there's still plenty of layers of cleverly-crafted guitar interplay that would benefit greatly from having more 'breathing' room. And it may be their finest sounding album, fidelity wise.

I completely agree in that "English Settlement" would be a stunning album in surround, and I hope it will be the 5th release in this "Surround Sound Series". (Either that or "Black Sea" would be the best options for the next release after "Skylarking".)
It's a tough situation for Andy though in that not only do they not know where the tapes are located for a lot of these albums, but they have to pay Universal (who now owns Virgin records) to do the searching, which can get pretty expensive as I understand it!
I just hope that they find the full multitrack tapes for another 80s album very soon, whether it's the aforementioned two above or "Mummer" or "The Big Express".
Any of those would be excellent follow-ups to "Skylarking", more so than the first two or last two albums XTC made. :)
 
Here it is, folks! Remember, you saw it here first!

http://stevenwilsonhq.com/sw/headphonedust/xtc-skylarking-cdblu-ray/

A virtual boxed set on a single Blu-Ray disc. Also includes CD with 4 additional tracks from the sessions, 3 previously unreleased. Skylarking is the fourth in a series of remixed and expanded XTC albums. For many music fans, the band's Todd Rundgren produced 8th album is *the* classic XTC album, and therefore the one for which there has been the most demand for a 5.1 surround mix. The album has been remixed in both new stereo and 5.1 surround sound by Steven Wilson with input from Andy Partridge, and is fully approved by XTC.

Product Description

Skylarking is the fourth in a series of remixed and expanded XTC albums. For many music fans, the band’s Todd Rundgren produced 8th album is *the* classic XTC album, and therefore the one for which there has been the most demand for a 5.1 surround mix. The album has been remixed in both new stereo and 5.1 surround sound by Steven Wilson with input from Andy Partridge, and is fully approved by XTC.

The CD features the new stereo mix, and 4 additional tracks from the sessions, 3 of which have been mixed for the very first time: Extrovert (from the 12 inch single of Grass), Let’s Make a Den, The Troubles, and Little Lighthouse.

Continuing with the “box set on a single disc” concept of the previous acclaimed releases in the series, the Blu-Ray features:

– 5.1 surround album mix in 24bit/96khz in LPCM and DTS HD MA
– The new stereo album mix in 24bit/96khz LPCM audio
– The four additional songs from the album sessions in both stereo and 5.1
– The original (uncorrected polarity) stereo album mix hi-res stereo
– The original (corrected polarity) stereo album mix in hi-res stereo
– Instrumental versions of all new mixes in 24bit/96khz LPCM audio
– A complete alternate album in demo form based on Todd Rundgren’s original sequence
– Numerous additional demo & work tape sessions showing the evolution of the album and associated recordings
– Promo films for “Dear God and “Grass”

The CD/Blu-Ray combination is presented in special packaging with expanded booklet and sleeve-notes by Andy Partridge, Colin Moulding and Dave Gregory

Pre-order now for release on 10th October 2016

1 Summer’s Cauldron
2 Grass
3 The Meeting Place
4 That’s Really Super, Supergirl
5 Ballet for a Rainy Day
6 1000 Umbrellas
7 Season Cycle
8 Earn Enough for Us
9 Big Day
10 Another Satellite
11 Mermaid Smiled
12 The Man Who Sailed Around His Soul
13 Dear God
14 Dying
15 Sacrificial Bonfire
+
16 Extrovert
17 Let’s Make a Den
18 The Troubles
19 Little Lighthouse

:)
 
f**k today got expensive pre ordered

Indeed! I never thought I'd be thankful that I may have to wait another year for a Seeds of Love box set!

As with all the previous XTC releases, this looks amazing. I know you'd have to be an idiot to complain about any of these XTC releases, but I really was hoping to have this video:

[video=youtube;pfRQGZUKS2Y]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pfRQGZUKS2Y[/video]
 
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