Sunday, September 11, 2011

Vocal Harmonies => Alphanumeric: The Disappointed

XTC: The Disappointed


XTC does not stand for anything. Say the letters out loud, and you get the word ecstasy. I don’t know if the name was intended as a drug reference, but I prefer the older meaning of the word, because the band’s music has always given me intense pleasure. The Disappointed is a sort of negative example of the power of vocal harmony. Almost half way through the song, all you have heard is Andy Partridge singing lead and some oohs, but never at the same time. Suddenly, Dave Gregory comes in with a low note on one word, “disappointed”. From there, the vocal arrangement becomes gradually more complex, and it helps the song build to a great climax. So, by leaving the vocal harmonies out of so much of the song, XTC gives a great demonstration of their power once they arrive.

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