XTC / Drums and Wires CD+Blu-ray


The long-awaited reissue of XTC‘s 1979 album Drums And Wires has been announced, and like the Nonsuch deluxe release from 2013, the two-disc sets (CD+Blu-ray and CD+DVD-A) will offer a massive amount of extra audio and visual material, including new 5.1 surround and stereo mixes.

Exact details of the track listing haven’t yet been confirmed, but the CD will feature a new Steven Wilson stereo mix plus six additional singles and non-album tracks. The (region free, NTSC) blu-ray audio will contain the original mix and new stereo mix in 24bit/96khz LPCM along with the hi-res 5.1 mix (again, by Steven Wilson). 

The blu-ray will also come with instrumental stereo mixes, five demo sessions and ‘numerous’ other stereo and 5.1 tracks (including Chain of Command and Limelightas well as the promo films for the singles Making Plans for Nigel and Life Begins At The Hop.

*Update: Steven Wilson got in touch with SDE to confirm that the blu-ray features a total of 117 tracks (!), which breaks down as follows:

  • New stereo mix = 12 tracks
  • Original stereo mix = 12 tracks
  • Instrumental mixes = 12 tracks
  • 5.1 mix = 12 tracks
  • Bonus tracks new stereo mixes = 11 tracks
  • Bonus tracks 5.1 = 11 tracks
  • Demo session 1 = 6 tracks
  • Demo session 2 = 4 tracks
  • Demo session 3 = 4 tracks
  • Demo session 4 = 4 tracks
  • Rehearsal tape = 20 tracks
  • DJM re-recordings = 3 tracks
  • Various original alternate mixes = 4 tracks
  • Promo videos = 2 track

All the new Steven Wilson mixes have been created with the input of founder band member Andy Partridge and the full approval of the band. Andy Partridge, Colin Moulding and Dave Gregory all contribute sleeve notes to the booklet.

The CD+DVD-A version will be similar to the CD+Blu-ray although not quite as generous since the format doesn’t offer the same capacity as the blu-ray audio. The instrumental mixes are missing from the DVD which also only comes with seven (rather than ‘numerous’) bonus tracks, all of which are stereo-only.

Drums and Wires is released on Andy Patridge’s APE label on 27 October 2014. The official online store is BurningShed.com where you will get postcards signed by Andy with all pre-orders.

Pre-order via Burning Shed (with signed postcard)

Pre-order via Amazon


1) Making Plans For Nigel 
2) Helicopter 
3) Day In Day Out 
4) When You’re Near Me I Have Difficulty 
5) Ten Feet Tall 
6) Roads Girdle the Globe 
7) Real By Reel 
8) Millions 
9) That Is The Way 
10) Outside World 
11) Scissor Man 
12) Complicated Game 

+ bonus tracks (full details to be confirmed as soon as possible) 

Blu-Ray (Region 0, NTSC): 

Presented in 24bit/96khz LPCM Audio 

Album mixed in 5.1 Surround 
– Steven Wilson stereo mix and original album mix in High Resolution stereo. 

Blu-Ray exclusive material includes: 

Numerous additional stereo and 5.1 tracks, new stereo album instrumental mixes, 5 demo sessions and promo films for the singles Making Plans for Nigel and Life Begins At The Hop.

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[…] third in a series of expanded XTC album reissues following Nonsuch in 2013 and Drums and Wires last year. The CD contains a brand new Steven Wilson stereo mix while blu-ray (no region restrictions, NTSC) […]

[…] More INFO tracklist CD: 01 – Making Plans For Nigel 02 – Helicopter 03 – Day In Day Out 04 – When Youre Near Me I Have Difficulty 05 – Ten Feet Tall 06 – Roads Girdle the Globe 07 – Real by Reel 08 – Millions 09 – That is the Way 10 – Outside World 11 – Scissor Man 12 – Complicated Game 13 – Chain of Command 14 – Limelight 15 – Life Begins at the Hop 16 – Homo Safari 17 – Ten Feet Tall Electric Version 18 – Wait Till Your Boat Goes Down […]

[…] More INFO tracklist CD: 01 – Making Plans For Nigel 02 – Helicopter 03 – Day In Day Out 04 – When Youre Near Me I Have Difficulty 05 – Ten Feet Tall 06 – Roads Girdle the Globe 07 – Real by Reel 08 – Millions 09 – That is the Way 10 – Outside World 11 – Scissor Man 12 – Complicated Game 13 – Chain of Command 14 – Limelight 15 – Life Begins at the Hop 16 – Homo Safari 17 – Ten Feet Tall Electric Version 18 – Wait Till Your Boat Goes Down […]


Considering what a generous curator Andy Partridge has been in the past, it’s fantastic that this version still has so much quality bonus material on offer. After the missed opportunity of the ‘Raft’ remasters in 2000 (can anyone honestly read those reproduced lyrics and credits without fumbling for a magnifying glass?) it’s great to think the whole back catalogue may get this reissue treatment on the artist’s terms, i.e. with equal care paid to both music and packaging.

As all we XTC-ites know, it’s a uniformly superb catalogue, yet sadly I think this 5.1 reissue campaign may be all we can look forward to. Andy’s comments in a recent issue of ‘Vive Le Rock!’ mag seem to confirm there’s no chance whatsoever of a reunion or new music now. Whatever he’s doing in that shed these days, it’s not labelled XTC…


Am patiently waiting in Australia for my Burning Shed pre-order…probably winging its way across Asia as we speak!

I know there are issues with finding tapes, so wouldn’t the “Apple Venus” and “Wasp Star” albums be the logical ones to do next until more tapes are found? I know “Apple Venus” itself is highly regarded by most fans, Steven Wilson included. Plus the thought of “Green Man” and “River of Orchids” in 5.1 makes my brain bend. Let’s do it Andy, you know it makes sense…it is 15 years old now!

[…] are so many added cuts on this disc that I don’t even think I can accurately count them. Super Deluxe Edition tallied them at 117, and I’m liable to believe them so lets just stick with that […]

Hadleigh Ford

If Steven or Andy do see this just want to pass on how amazing these reissues are. Value for money compared to other SD sets is just unreal. Love the new essays and insights and the various rehearsals and demos are brilliant! Thank you and I’ll just go and get my money ready for the next release!


However it may be. I also have the “Black Plastic Bag” for my copy of Black Sea. WAKE UP! How about the boys pull a Kate Bush on us and pull a stint of live shows within their comfort zone? That would certainly create a hot mess now wouldn’t it? (The blu-ray movie sales- I’m in) Kickstarter-goldmine!

Paul Kent

Yeah, those Dukes reissues are gorgeous, Paul. But, I think Brian may be alluding to a possible 5.1-ification of those albums… I’d buy ’em again! Imagine surround mixes of The Mole From The Ministry, You’re A Good Man Albert Brown, My Love Explodes, Pale And Precious – damn, all of them!!


That’s right Paul I am. Dukes in 5.1. Yeah baby!

Metal Mickey

At the risk of stating the obvious, _this_ is what a SDE should be, i.e. what appears to be every single note laid down by the band in the making of the album – in fact, all that seems to be missing are the multitracks for the listener to create his own mixes, but I’m sure Andy P is working on it!

PS Baward – I have the original US edition of Black Sea, which came in a black plastic bag rather than a green paper one for some reason…


I wonder if the Dukes of Stratosphere will ever get this treatment?

mark orlando avery

Have been an avid XTC fan since first hearing them and then playing them on the radio in the late 70’s. Haven’t lost the feel either here in 2016. Saw them once in D.C. in the l early 80’s and just an absolute thrill to be in their presence. Partridge and Moulding such an unbelievable turn on at the time. ………. won’t ever forget that. Yeah, reliving the past ’cause that’s my way………………………………………………………………………………
MOA–Wednesday 3:13 PM–North-side Library–Charlottesville, Va. 22901


I loved Nonsuch but (like others on here) I would have loved to have the bonus material available via a download. My Blu-ray player is not linked to my HiFi system (maybe I am in the minority).
I raised the issue of a download to Andy via the APE forum – can’t recall if he ever responded (although he did respond to some other things about the Nonsuch release).

I would love to have English Settlement released as part of this series BUT I seem to recall that the original master tapes were lost (!!!!) somewhere down the line thus rendering 5.1 mixes impossible.

English Settlement is one of my top three favourite albums so it really pains me that the masters of all that great work have been lost. :-(


Awesome. Im looking forward to any XTC deluxe versions.
This is how you do it- a lot of bonus music at a fair price.
Black Sea is one of my favs and I hope to see that soon as well.


Personally holding out on English Settlement coming along next…..


Looking forward to Black Sea too. Iwonder if it will come in a little green paper back outer sleeve? :-)


I hope that XTC release a deluxe version of Black Sea next.


Yes I agree. Of course any Black Sea deluxe edition would not be complete without the At The Manor documentary.

Paul Kent

Seeing as we’ve caught Steven’s eye (and, therefore, vicariously, Andy’s), a download code to access all audio would be lovely. This was something that would have been most welcome with Nonsuch and, now, judging by the wealth of audio options available (on the blu-ray, anyway), would be something to consider for this and future Surround Sound Series releases. Any chance?

Brian McCloskey

I agree completely, Paul. Love the work the Nonsuch package, but would have loved to be able to get the demos as MP3s. Would be a very welcome add for this set.

Paul Kent

Nice if Take Away/The Lure Of Salvage could be accommodated somewhere, too. Looking forward to this greatly, regardless :)


It’s been a good few years for music fans. The veil is getting pulled back on some great music!


About time! I’ve been waiting for this for so long.

Matthew Best

11 bonus tracks remixed into stereo and 5.1:
1. Life Begins at the Hop*
2. Homo Safari
(A+B side to Life Begins at the Hop single, UK release April 1979)
3. Chain of Command
4. Limelight
(A+B side to free single included with initial pressing of Drums and Wires, UK release August 1979)
5. Bushman President
6. Pulsing Pulsing
(B-sides to Making Plans for Nigel single, UK release Sep 1979)
7. Wait Til Your Boat Goes Down
8. Ten Feet Tall – electric version
(A+B side to Wait Til Your Boat Goes Down single, UK release March 1980)
9. Officer Blue
(Drums and Wires out-take – B-side to Respectable Street single, UK release March 1981)
10. Over Rusty Water
(Drums and Wires out-take – B-side to No Thugs in Our House single, UK release May 1982)
11. Sleepyheads
(Drums and Wires out-take, first released on Coat of Many Cupboards box set, UK release 2002)
* (Life Begins at the Hop is the original stereo master due to multitrack tapes being unavailable, the 5.1 version is a Penteo upmix)

Matthew Best