Sunday, December 23, 2007

The Acoustic Lounge - XTC

XTC was a New Wave band from Swindon, England, active between 1976 and 2005. Though the band enjoyed some significant chart success (including the UK hits "Making Plans For Nigel" (1979) and "Senses Working Overtime" (1982)), they are more known for their long-standing critical success than for making hit records.

First coming together in 1972, the core duo of Andy Partridge (guitars & vocals) and Colin Moulding (bass & vocals) went through many band names (including The Helium Kidz and Star Park) over the next five years. As the Helium Kidz, they were featured in a small NME article as an up-and-coming band from Swindon. Drawing influence from the New York Dolls and the emerging New York punk scene, they played glam rock with homemade costumes and slowly built up a following. Drummer Terry Chambers joined in 1973. Keyboard player Barry Andrews followed in 1976, and the band finally settled on a name: XTC. By this time, the punk rock movement was in full swing, and XTC had found their style, a unique brand of hyperactive pop mixed with funk, punk, ska, reggae, and art rock.

While XTC have not announced a formal break-up, in 2006 band member Andy Partridge announced that the only other remaining member of XTC, Colin Moulding, was no longer interested in writing, performing or recording music. Partridge has stated that he will not issue new recordings under the XTC banner without Moulding's participation; accordingly, he now speaks of XTC "in the past tense".

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