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XTC – Black Sea (1980) [Blu-Ray Audio 2017] {BD-Audio Rip 24-96 / FLAC 2.0 & 5.1}

XTC – Black Sea (1980/2017) [FLAC 2.0 & 5.1]
FLAC 2.0 (tracks) Stereo 24-bit/96 kHz | Time – 49:55 minutes | 1,06 GB
FLAC 5.1 (tracks) Multichannel 24-bit/96 kHz | Time – 49:55 m | 2,56 GB
BD-Audio Rip | Features Stereo & Multichannel Mixes | Artwork: Front cover

More Power Rock than Power Pop, when released in September 1980, the album became XTC’s first Top 20 chart album in the U.K., narrowly missed the Top 40 (No. 41) in the USA where it was issued in November, but spent an impressive 24 weeks on the Billboard chart nonetheless. The sense of immediacy, the rush of a band fully living up to its potential is as apparent now as it was when the album first came out & Steven Wilson’s new stereo & 5.1 mixes bring out every nuance of the original performances on what was, already, one of the best engineered & produced albums of the era.

XTC continue on with the big drum sound of Drums and Wires, adding more polish and an even heavier-hitting approach for Black Sea – their arrangements are fuller and they rock harder than ever before. Where Drums and Wires implied social commentary, Black Sea more directly addresses sociopolitical concerns, handling them not strictly in a theoretical sense, but rather showing a human response to the circumstances. Of course, the band’s skewed outlook and mid-’60s pop sense keeps things from becoming too heavy – included are some of their finest songs, like “Respectable Street,” “Generals and Majors,” and “Towers of London,” as well as the thoroughly enjoyable pop fluff throwaway “Sgt. Rock (Is Going to Help Me)” to keep the mood light. All in all, there isn’t a bad song in the bunch – Black Sea is their most consistent album to date – and although XTC always operated on the fringes, the album is their most commercial-sounding, fitting in perfectly with the new wave of the late ’70s/early ’80s.

01 – Respectable Street
02 – Generals And Majors
03 – Living Through Another Cuba
04 – Love At First Sight
05 – Rocket From A Bottle
06 – No Language In Our Lungs
07 – Towers Of London
08 – Paper And Iron (Notes And Coins)
09 – Burning With Optimism’s Flame
10 – Sgt. Rock (Is Going To Help Me)
11 – Travels In Nihilon

STEREO – The 2017 stereo album mix in 24bit/96khz LPCM audio.
MULTICHANNEL – Mixed for 5.1 Surround Sound in 24-bit/96kHz from the original multi-track studio master tapes by Steven Wilson with input from Andy Patridge and is fully approved by XTC.


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