Friday, September 9, 2011

XTC: Rainbow Drops and Finger Pops

"Malking Plans for Nigel" from XTC's 1979 album "Drums and Wires" is one of the defining songs of the new wave era for me, alongside The Police's "Can't Stand Losing You", Split Enz's "I See Red", Squeeze's  "Misadventure" and Joe Jackson's "I'm the Man". These relentlessly up-tempo songs with choppy guitar, catchy choruses, conspicuous keyboards and deliberate quirkiness did much to fuck up my taste in music forever.

Rainbow Drops & Finger Pops - Live at the Rainbow Theatre, London, UK, 1979-09-17 is another lavish XTC bootleg - worth getting just for the packaging alone never mind the kinetic live performance from the band near their peak:

01 Beatown
02 Real By Reel
03 The Rhythm
04 Roads Girdle The Globe
05 Science Friction
06 Life Begins At the Hop
07 Helicopter
08 Battery brides
09 Making Plans For Nigel
10 Scissor Man
11 Instant Tunes
12 Outside World
13 Life Is Good In The Greenhouse
14 Crowded Room
15 Radios In Motion
16 Are You Receiving Me?
17 Set Myself On Fire
18 Meccanik Dancing
19 This Is Pop
20 Dance Band
21 Statue Of Liberty

Love or hate the designation, what are your defining 'new wave' songs? Le us know in the COMMENTS section (which is where you'll find the link for Rainbow Drops and Finger Pops CD).

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  1. Other classic 'new wave' songs:

    Elvis Costello and the Attractions: I don't wanna go to Chelsea
    The Cars: My Best Friend's Girl
    The Vapours: Turning Japanese
    Blondie: Picture This

  2. Thanks. XTC seems so long ago and yet, so near.

  3. Great song, other new wave faves? Off the top of my head; Tourist Information - The Tours, Pump It Up - Elvis Costello, In The Flesh - Blondie.
    Check out our new podcast here: which features Dirty Pictures by Radio Stars, another new wave cracker.

  4. XTC live were a real force,thanks for New Wave 5: Space Junk (Devo)Captain Kirk(Spizzenergy)Te Deum(Frank Sumatra)No Tears(Tuxedomoon)and obviously Nigel...

  5. hey! i think this blog is back in my good books, (after a short intermission)(see Rezillo's)
    XTC seem to be one of them bands who influence everyone, but take no credit for it...UP TO NOW!!!
    Many Thanks Jeffen!
    influences for me include-
    Magazine~ Shot By Both Sides
    Stiff Little Fingers~ At The Edge
    Boomtown Rats~ Someones Lookin' At You
    Damned~everything they did
    Iggy- Search and Destroy

  6. your best series ever?

  7. Can't find a link anywhere?!

  8. Cheers in advance for this one Jeff. I agree with the Red Curtain re Turning Japanese being a classic new wave song (You should also check out the brilliant version of that song by the Vibrators)

    Just waiting for you to wake up and post a link up now :-)

  9. Well this is bizarre.

    I know I put the link up yesterday morning (my e-mail shows the comment was left) plus 74 people d/l'ed it but now there's no comment from me here.


    Well this is bizarre.

  10. thanks for the great posts. XTC have long been a favorite of mine since I heard and taped "Making Plans for Nigel" off the radio in 1980. I have every album they ever released and many boots to boot. Other seminal new wave tracks from my earliest teenage year are Oingo Boingo's "Outside", Split Enz's "I Got You", one of my first LP purchases Costello's "Get Happy", Suburban Lawns' "Janitor", Wall of Voodoo's "Red Light", Squeeze's "Pulling Mussels", Devo's "Whip It", and almost everything off the classic movie "Urgh! A Music War" which I watched again just last weekend and can be ordered here:,default,pd.html?cgid=ZARCHIVEALL-BEST&src=GGLHMOD&gclid=CNn72sr2kqsCFeUZQgodnWvXtw
    Cheers, Dude, for the great blog and the obvious enthusiasm you bring to it.

  11. Try as I might I simply cannot get the (new) link to work? Just me or anyone else? Ahh, that Mediafire.....

  12. BS1962


    Hope it works it has gotten 30 or so d/l's I posted the new link. This is the weirdest upload ever!

  13. Still won't work for me, thanks for attempting the fix though....sometimes things simply are not meant to be!

  14. Thank you so much!
    My download worked fine but seems to not have #21 Stature of Liberty. Anyone else?

  15. Hey folks
    Glad most people's d/l worked and thanks for adding to the list of defining New Wave songs.

  16. Is definately missing the last track 21 - Statue of Liberty :(


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