XTC: This Is Pop

XTC: This Is Pop
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Review

XTC inspire a very singular fandom. Quirky, colourful, restlessly inventive and as English as the Marlborough Downs, Andy Partridge’s Swindon minstrels fashioned albums that fizzed with wit. And this vibrant documentary is exactly the tribute they deserve, filmed against an aptly surreal backdrop mixing model trains with miniature faking.

Their journey from jerky sci-fi to majestic pastoralism is beautifully un-rock ’n’ roll, as is Partridge’s creative process (lacking a verse for Senses Working Overtime, he strummed a non-chord that suggested “somebody in a field, tilling”). Even their mucking-about years as pasticheurs the Dukes of Stratosphear were muso nirvana.

Some very cool followers, including Harry Shearer and John Grant, explain the wilful unpredictability that made XTC so lovable. How refreshing to hear that it was never about the riches; only ever the music.

Summary

Documentary charting the career of English rock band XTC, who formed in Swindon in 1972 and became one of Britain's most influential yet unsung bands.

Cast & Crew

Actor XTC
Documentary