XTC – Apple Venus Volume One [Import] – 200 Gram, Vinyl, LP, Remastered, Ape House Uk, 2018
Limited 200gm vinyl LP pressing. Song lyric sheet included. Newly mastered by Jason Mitchell at Loud Mastering from tapes approved by Andy Partridge. Following seven years of enforced silence due to contractual disputes with Virgin Records, XTC returned in 1999 with it’s own label (Idea) and an album which many fans consider to be the band’s finest recording: Apple Venus Volume I. A stunning selection of songs, mostly acoustic and enhanced by subtle orchestral arrangements, it was in some ways different to what anyone might have expected from the band yet, in hindsight, the logical progression and culmination of musical ideas signposted via songs such as ‘Chalkhills & Children’ and ‘Wrapped in Grey’. A Top 20 album in Japan, the album also charted in the UK and USA though the seven years absence had eroded some of the commercial momentum the band had enjoyed – especially in the USA – with the run of albums from Skylarking to Nonsuch. The album – whose status was never in doubt with critics or fans – is now routinely cited as a career highpoint.