Apple Venus (Vol. 1)
It’s 1999, and whew! — we have now had twenty years of sociopolitical pop gems from Andy Partridge and Colin Moulding: “Making Plans For Nigel,” “Senses Working Overtime,” “Dear God,” “Peter Pumpkinhead,” et. al. “Apple Venus” seems to the phrase of the decade for XTC, as those words appeared on 1991’s excellent Nonsuch album in the captivating “Then She Appeared.” Apple Venus Volume 1 here is apparently the kinder, gentler installment, which really brings out the marvelously executed Beatle-esque arrangements and harmonies that have always identified the band to one degree or another. XTC is also adept at taking chances, and they do a nice quasi-eastern raga with “Green Man.” “I’d Like That” and “Easter Theatre” are vintage Andy Partridge; “Frivolous Tonight” and “Fruit Nut” are vintage Colin Moulding; and Apple Venus Volume 1 is, well, vintage XTC.
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