Wednesday, September 14, 2011

XTC: Beeswax (Some B-sides) LP

When I went on an XTC vinyl-buying tear back in '88 this was one purchase that I adored. It seemed odd to me for a band whose every album contains some filler (at least by many people's standards) could have such a rock-solid collection of B-sides. Of course, when I bought all the CD re-issues on Virgin, I expected to find "Tissue Tigers" and "Heaven is Paved With Broken Glass" restored to their proper place but NOOOOO - you have to buy Rag and Bone Buffet just to get those tracks and others you can't find anywhere! Fuck! Virgin needs to do double XTC re-issues that work like the new Buzzcocks (B-sides, Peel sessions, demos, radio concerts) ones do.

A1         She's So Square        
A2         Dance Band        
A3         Hang Onto The Night        
A4         Heatwave        
A5         Instant Tunes    
A6         Pulsing Pulsing        
A7         Don't Lose Your Temper        
B1         Smokeless Zone        
B2         The Somnambulist        
B3         Blame The Weather        
B4         Tissue Tigers        
B5         Punch And Judy        
B6         Heaven Is Paved With Broken Glass

So do all XTC albums have filler on them? Let us know what you think in the COMMENTS section, which is where you'll find the Waxworks link.)

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  1. I shout this, you shout that, the clouds coming
    over are looking awful black - it's all hot air,
    you say go, I say stay, clear blue sky goes
    Sheffield grey - it's all hot air. I've grown
    immune to your claws pussycats, I know
    all your threats are tissue tigers crawling
    across the table to me all your threats are
    tissue tigers ripping 'em up is easy for me now.
    I'll shout this, you shout that, an eye for
    heart and a tit for a tat - you easy tear. think
    your stripes are yellow and black I can only
    see the yellow one down your back - you easy
    tear. I've grown immune to your claws
    pussycats, I know all your threats are
    tissue tigers crawling across the table to me
    all your threats are tissue tigers ripping
    'em up is easy for me now.
    we argue all life long, you'd swear that
    black was wrong throw tantrums like
    queen kong I've trapped you in my song
    all your threats are tissue tigers crawling
    across the table to me all your threats are
    tissue tigers ripping 'em up is easy for
    me now.


  2. I don't know too much about xtc - i like what i've heard (a lot), but i've never owned an album.

    but i remember when this came out - sometime in my college, prime-record-buying years. and i really wanted it, cuz b-sides have always intrigued me.

    i guess i just love 'leftovers'...


  3. Those poor XTC records, man--so awesome, yet so neglected, and yeah, they've been slated for double-disc reissues MANY times over the last decade, only to be pulled. It's a damn shame.

    I dug your Top 10 list at BTO...

  4. great blog, but xtc bores me anyway...
    most of the songs are filler to me, sorry. have a few records from the older days and try from time to time to listen again on their works, but almost everytime i fail. think the only record i can listen to (on a good day!) from the start to the end is 'drums and wires', the rest: some nice ideas and two or three good pop songs on every record, but that's not enough. a simple case of 'their time is up' ?

  5. I'm a huge fan, but while I would say there are some weaker tracks on most of the albums, I wouldn't call them filler -- just less meaty. DRUMS AND WIRES and BLACK SEA have no weak bits.

  6. Thanks for all your posts.
    Like some others; XTC I can take 'em or leave 'em. I saw them at Kettering Town Hall in 1977 (I enjoyed the Band but not the hassle). I think it was before they had a record contract and they were selling a disc called "XTC R NRG". I was broke and could not afford it, but would love to hear it if anyone has a copy.


  7. The hits (whether of the chart or of the heart) are amazing but, yeah, most of the XTC albums I've heard definitely have dead spots.

    I was a little surprised when you picked up "English Settlement" as I've never been able to make it all the way through that record (even with the life changing factor of "Senses Working Overtime" in it's favor).

  8. I understand that not everyone will love every minute of XTC, but these posts are a thrill for me. They produced some of the most innovative and inspiring music I've ever heard--and after more than two decades, I could throw on Oranges & Lemons (for example) right now & hear something I've never heard before. Thanks ever so!

  9. brink
    B-sides can be fun - hope you dug some of these ones.

    Yeah in the last batch some of them don't even have track listings - irritating!
    Glad you liked the list - sequel on Sunday.

    Always glad to have a dissenting voice but who knows maybe we'll sway you a bit!

    I can hear the filler on D & W - but maybe I'm being hyper-critcal.

    ""XTC R NRG" fascinating. Never heard of it but if that's correct it means the band invented two terms common in rave culture.

    Great tracks from ES:
    Ball & Chain
    Senses Working Overtime
    Jason and the Argonauts
    No Thugs in our House
    All of a Sudden
    Knuckle Down
    Fly on the wall
    Down in the Cockpit
    English Roundabout

    That's 9/15 plus of the remaining 6 three are pretty good and three are kinda filler-ish - about average for a prime era era XTC.

    Any time, man.

    I had O & L on cassette back in the late 80's I'll have to give it a new listen.

  10. Thanks very much for this. Did you also find the A sides compilation which was part of the set when released?

  11. bobl
    I got them together way back. Since everything on the Wax Works is on Fossil Fuel and other such hits packages though, it won't show up here.

  12. Jeffen, have you ever read Lost in Music by Giles Smith? It documents his most wonderful and compelling obsession with XTC, it's one of my favourite music books ever! Recommend highly.

    Looking forward to exploring all the XTC obscurities too! Thank you!

  13. thanks a million..great stuff.

  14. Elanor
    Never heard of it till now. I'll have to find a copy (of course my library's never heard of it either). Guess I'll have to hold off till I get one of those damn e-reader thingies.

  15. Beeswax is the finest collection of B-sides ever


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