Review: The legacy of XTC simultaneously reveals the inner workings and inflexibility of the music industry and how easy it is to be incredibly talented and forward-thinking yet still languish in relative obscurity. Of course most musos are pretty familiar with these New Wavers, but at least some of that knowledge has been garnered retrospectively, through revisiting and reappraising.
'Oranges & Lemons', first released in 1989, is the band at their smash hit-potential best, and also on the cusp of their eventual decline. It's as fresh as any that came before - far more than just New Wave happening here (synth pop, DIY indie), and nobody was looking to reign anything in, allowing the sprawling contents to span two whole discs unabridged. Another piece of compelling evidence to say that XTC's main problems were the fact managers and labels didn't really get what they were aiming for, musically, rather than their notorious avoidance of tours.
Review: 1992's Nonsuch is the ninth in a series of XTC classics to be issued on 200g vinyl. It is often thought to be one of the more mature and sophisticated albums this band put out, and it was also the last they did for Virgin. It was never that widely available first time round, and certainly not on a good quality pressing, so now it has been mastered by Jason Mitchell at Loud Mastering with full approval from the band. The sleek on this version has also been fully restored and expanded to gatefold to accommodate the nice and heavy wax inside, plus full lyric sheets.