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#SLS — No Thugs in Our House by XTC

Jim Adams is the audiophile host of Song Lyric Sunday.  Jim says:
This week we have Promise/Vow/Oath and I think that everyone should be able to find a song that uses one of these prompt words.

Here are the “rules”:
• Post the lyrics to the song of your choice, whether it fits the theme or not. If it does not fit, then please explain why you chose this song.
• Please try to include the songwriter(s) – it’s a good idea to give credit where credit is due.
• Make sure you also credit the singer/band and if you desire you can provide a link to where you found the lyrics.
• Link to the YouTube video, or pull it into your post so others can listen to the song.
• Ping back to this post or place your link in the comments section below.
• Read at least one other person’s blog, so we can all share new and fantastic music and create amazing new blogging friends in the process.
• Feel free to suggest future prompts.
• Have fun and enjoy the music.

 

Image result for XTC 1982
XTC

XTC were an English rock band formed in Swindon in 1972. Fronted by songwriters Andy Partridge (guitars, vocals) and Colin Moulding (bass, vocals), the band gained popularity during the rise of punk and new wave in the 1970s, later playing in a variety of styles that ranged from angular guitar riffs to elaborately arranged pop. Partly because the group did not fit into contemporary trends, they achieved only sporadic commercial success in the UK and US, but attracted a considerable cult following. They have since been recognised for their influence on Britpop and later power pop acts.

English Settlement is their fifth studio album and first double album, released February 12, 1982 on Virgin Records. It marked a turn towards the more pastoral pop songs that would dominate later XTC releases, with an emphasis on acoustic guitar, 12-string electric guitar and fretless bass. In some countries, the album was released as a single LP with five tracks deleted. The title refers to the Uffington White Horse depicted on the cover, to the “settlement” of viewpoints, and to the Englishness that the band felt they “settled” into the record.

XTC recorded the album at The Manor Studio in Oxfordshire with producer Hugh Padgham, the engineer of their previous two LPs. Principal songwriter Andy Partridge was fatigued by the grueling touring regimen imposed by their label and management, and believed that pursuing a sound less suited for live performance would relieve the pressure to tour. Three singles were issued from the album: “Senses Working Overtime” (number 10), “Ball and Chain” (number 58) and “No Thugs in Our House” (no chart showing).

English Settlement was well-received critically and continues to be regarded by many critics as XTC’s finest album. It reached number 5 on the UK Album Chart during an 11-week stay, as well as number 48 on the US Billboard 200 during a 20-week stay. An international tour was scheduled in support of the album, but it was canceled after several dates due to Partridge’s worsening exhaustion. XTC’s popularity in the UK faltered, and for the rest of their career, they remained a studio-only band. In 2002, English Settlement was ranked number 46 on Pitchfork’s list of “The Top 100 Albums of the 1980s”.

No Thugs in Our House” is about a middle-class couple struggling to accept that their son is a violent racist. Musically, it was based from Eddie Cochran’s “Summertime Blues”. Partridge’s vocals were treated with slapback echo to mimic the rock and roll feeling of the Cochran song.

 

 

The insect-headed worker-wife will hang her waspies on the line;
The husband burns his paper, sucks his pipe while studying their cushion-floor;
His viscous poly-paste breath comes out,
Their wall-paper world is shattered by his shout,
A boy in blue is busy banging out a headache on the kitchen door

And all the while Graham slept on,
Dreaming of a world where he could do just what he wanted to

No thugs in our house, are there dear?
We made that clear,
We made little Graham promise us he’d be a good boy

No thugs in our house, are there dear?
We made that clear,
We made little Graham promise us he’d be a good boy

The young policeman who just can’t grow a mustache will open up his book,
And spoil their breakfast with reports of Asians who have been so badly kicked
Is this your son’s wallet I’ve got here?
He must have dropped it after too much beer
Oh, officer, we can’t believe our little angel is the one you’ve picked

And all the while Graham slept on,
Dreaming of a world where he could do just what he wanted to

No thugs in our house, are there dear?
We made that clear,
We made little Graham promise us he’d be a good boy

No thugs in our house, are there dear?
We made that clear,
We made little Graham promise us he’d be a good boy

They never read those pamphlets in his bottom drawer,
They never read that tattoo on his arm
They thought it was just a boys club badge he wore,
They never dreamt he’d cause folks any harm

The insect-headed worker wife will hang her waspies on the line;
She’s singing something stale and simple now this business has fizzled out;
Her little tune is such a happy song
Her son is innocent, he can’t do wrong,
‘Cause dad’s a judge and knows exactly what the job of judging’s all about

And all the while Graham slept on,
Dreaming of a world where he could do just what he wanted to

No thugs in our house, are there dear?
We made that clear,
We made little Graham promise us he’d be a good boy

No thugs in our house, are there dear?
We made that clear,
We made little Graham promise us he’d be a good boy

No thugs in our house
No thugs in our house
No thugs in our house, dear

No thugs in our house
No thugs in our house, woo
No thugs in our house
No thugs in our house, owh
No thugs in our house
No thugs in our house, woo
No thugs in our house
No thugs in our house, awh
No thugs in our house
Songwriters: Andy Partridge

 

 

28 thoughts on “#SLS — No Thugs in Our House by XTC

    1. LOL. He tells it like it is, with words and sounds. I read quite a bit about the group when putting the post together. He had been prescribed Valium before he hit his teens. He was hooked on them. After this album they never did live shows again (iirc.)

      Liked by 1 person

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