- Number of Discs: 4
- Released: April 2, 2002
- Label: Caroline
Q - 4/02, p.1374 out of 5 stars
- "...For anyone ever touched by the joys of intelligent pop, this is a treasure trove..."
Mojo (Publisher) - April 2002, p.123
"...[XTC were] carriers of the heartful, artful pop genius gene....[the box] functions...as an alternative route tracing XTC's journey from the nervy nerds of the New Wave to the semi-retired statesmen of thought-ful pop..."
Tracks on Disc 1:
- 1.Science Friction - (CBS demo)
- 2.Spinning Top - (live, Live at Eric's in Liverpool)
- 3.Traffic Light Rock - (Live at Eric's in Liverpool)
- 4.Radios In Motion - (White Music version)
- 5.Let's Have Fun - (White Music outtake)
- 6.Fireball XL 5 / Fireball Dub - (White Music outtake, White Music outtake)
- 7.Heatwave MK. 2 Deluxe - (White Music outtake)
- 8.This Is Pop - (Single version)
- 9.Are You Receiving Me? - (Go 2 outtake)
- 10.Things Fall To Bits - (Go 2 outtake)
- 11.Us Being Us - (Go 2 outtake)
- 12.Life Begins At The Hop - (First Rehearsal Extract)
- 13.Life Begins At The Hop - (First Recording, Unused)
- 14.Making Plans For Nigel - (Demo from Swindon Town Hall)
- 15.Ten Feet Tall - (Drums And Wires version)
- 16.Sleepyheads - (Drums And Wires outtake)
Tracks on Disc 2:
- 1.Meccanik Dancing - (live, Live at the Marconi Club in Sydney)
- 2.Atom Age / Hang Onto The Night / Neon Shuffle - (live, Live at the Marconi Club in Sydney)
- 3.Life Begins At The Hop - (Unused U. S. single recording)
- 4.Real By Reel - (Unused single recording)
- 5.When You're Near Me I Have Difficulty - (Unused single recording)
- 6.Helicopter - (Unused single recording)
- 7.Towers Of London - (Rejected single recording)
- 8.Generals And Majors - (Rehearsal tape)
- 9.No Language In Our Lung - (Black Sea version)
- 10.Sgt. Rock Is Going To Help Me - (Black Sea version)
- 11.Paper And Iron - (live, Live at the Lyceum in London)
- 12.Crowded Room - (live, Live at the Lyceum in London)
- 13.Senses Working Overtime - (early work tape)
- 14.Snowman - (live, Live at the Hammersmith Odeon in London)
- 15.Ball And Chain - (Unused single recording)
Tracks on Disc 3:
- 1.Punch And Judy - (Unused Single version)
- 2.Fly On The Wall - (English Settlement version)
- 3.Yacht Dance - (live, Live on the Old Grey Whistle Test, BBC TV)
- 4.Jason And The Argonauts - (English Settlement version)
- 5.Love On A Farmboy's Wages - (Home demo)
- 6.Wonderland - (Home demo)
- 7.Ladybird - (Mummer version)
- 8.All You Pretty Girls - (Home demo)
- 9.Wake Up - (Home demo)
- 10.Everyday Story Of Smalltown, The - (Big Express version)
- 11.Grass - (Home demo)
- 12.Let's Make A Den - (Home demo)
- 13.Meeting Place, The - (Home demo)
- 14.Dear God - (Band demo)
Tracks on Disc 4:
- 1.Brainiac's Daughter - (Psonic Psunspot version, with The Dukes Of The Stratosphear)
- 2.Vanishing Girl - (Psonic Psunspot version, with The Dukes Of The Stratosphear)
- 3.Terrorism - (Home demo)
- 4.Find The Fox - (Home demo)
- 5.Season Cycle - (Skylarking version)
- 6.Troubles, The - (Home demo)
- 7.Mayor Of Simpleton - (Early work tape)
- 8.King For A Day - (Home demo)
- 9.Chalkhills And Children - (Oranges & Lemons version)
- 10.Ballad Of Peter Pumpkinhead, The - (Early Home demo)
- 11.Omnibus - (Nunsuch version)
- 12.Disappointed, The - (Home demo)
- 13.Bungalow - (Nunsuch version)
- 14.Didn't Hurt A Bit - (Nonsuch outtake)
- 15.Books Are Burning - (live, Live on the Late Show, BBC TV)
A COAT OF MANY CUPBOARDS contains outtakes, demo versions, home recordings, rehearsal extracts, acoustic versions and previously unreleased live tracks spanning 15 years of the band's history.
XTC includes: Andy Partridge (vocals, guitar); Colin Moulding (bass).
Additional personnel: The Dukes Of The Stratosphear
Includes liner notes by Harrison Sherwood.
All tracks have been digitally remastered.
XTC: Andy Partridge (vocals, guitar, acoustic guitar, keyboards); David Gregory (vocals, guitar, piano, Mellotron, keyboards, drum programming); Barry Andrews (vocals, keyboards); Colin Moulding (vocals, bass guitar); Terry Chambers (drums).
Additional personnel: Guy Barker (trumpet); Dave Mattacks, Ian Gregory , Pat Mastelotto, Prairie Prince, Peter Phipps (drums).
XTC have had several career retrospectives in the past, but never one like this. Over the course of these four discs, the British popsters' history through their years with Virgin (everything they did up until APPLE VENUS VOL 1) is rolled out with outtakes, demos, live performances, and some of the familiar original recordings. The deluxe packaging is thoughtfully annotated, with extensive notes about each song's composition and/or production.
The box is arranged chronologically, and the band's retirement from playing live after the release of BLACK SEA is mirrored in the deeper approach they began taking in the studio. Home demos even took on broader importance, as complex arrangements were honed before going into a proper studio. For the most part, the behind-the-scenes glimpses show the songs as they became known. There are, however, a few nice surprises, such as the very earliest songwriting work on "Mayor Of Simpleton"--the song had not yet found its identity, and it's rare to hear an XTC song this early in the process, with Andy Partridge literally searching as he strums.