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Sorry, I've only just realised.
And yeah, they really are that good. Don't get me started; I can be very boring about XTC.
I'll merely say this: Skylarking is the most-celebrated album but it isn't remotely my favourite - the run from Drums & Wires through Black Sea to English Settlement is up there with ANY postpunk run of three (Wire, Magazine and The Cure especially springing to mind) - and later on, how they adapt! How their infinitely beautiful, imaginative songwriting finds pastoral shades! Nonsuch and Apple Venus are two quite stunning records IMO, and should not be overlooked.
Not to mention the Dukes of Stratosphear...
Some of the very early stuff can be a bit new-wave funky in a bad Elvis Costello-y way, and some of the later Oranges & Lemons era stuff is a bit too naff, but it's all still good, and their run of albums in the middle is great. Haven't bothered with all the extra-curricular stuff yet, but will get round to it eventually I'm sure.
Oranges And Lemons is not very good, unfortunately. Big Express and Mummer have their moments but they're very much transitional records.
Skylarking itself is all about the middle-eight of Ballet For A Rainy Day. That alone justifies the album - of course there's plenty else to love. 'Another Satellite' might be my favourite, mind
but I do like it a lot
They've got it all - catchy tunes, intelligent lyrics, unafraid to experiment with different styles whether it be angular new wave, guitar pop or pastoral strummage. I think someone once described XTC as god's way of apolgizing for the Beatles breaking up, which is funny but also bang on the money.
awwwwwwwwwwwww yeah :-D
but you also make me want to give Mummer another go, which is a good thing
but I like that a lot.