Monday, September 23, 2013

XTC - Mayor of Simpleton

This is XTC's second appearance on the blog, as "Senses Working Overtime" showed up way back in September 2011.  As we mentioned in that post, XTC produced some outstanding 1960's influenced pop, but somehow managed to avoid becoming big stars.  Their lack of major success seems to have been the result of two factors:  (1) Their inability to tour (guitarist/singer Andy Partridge's stage fright is the stuff of legends), and (2) The lack of trendiness in their music.  Ironically, while they often seemed out of step back in the day, their music has aged remarkably well, in ERV's opinion.

"Mayor of Simpleton" was from the band's 1989 Oranges and Lemons album, and at #72, it was their highest charting U.S. single.  In fact, XTC's only other charting song in the U.S. was "Generals and Majors," which reached #104 in 1980.  "Mayor of Simpleton" was undoubtedly helped by the catchy video(s) below, which led to some airplay on MTV, particularly during the 120 Minutes segment.

Due to the wonders of the internet, we also know that there were two version of the video -- a U.S. version:



And a U.K. version:



XTC continued making music through 1992, when a dispute with their label led the band to stop recording for six years.  Once they were released from their contract, XTC resumed releasing music on a smaller scale until they disbanded in 2005.

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