Music

The Dukes of Stratosphear

Formed 1984.

Biography

The Dukes of Stratosphear was a pseudonym used by the British rock band XTC in the mid-to-late 1980s, concurrently with XTC's continued musical activities. The project was intended as a homage to 1960s pop and psychedelic music by groups such as The Beatles, Pink Floyd, The Byrds, The Kinks, The Zombies, The Beach Boys, The Small Faces, Jefferson Airplane and The Pretty Things.[citation needed]

The band released two records under this pseudonym, the mini-album 25 O'Clock (1985), and the full-length album Psonic Psunspot (1987). The two releases were compiled onto a single CD under the title Chips from the Chocolate Fireball: An Anthology, which was released simultaneously with the vinyl issue of Psonic Psunspot. The Dukes were also mentioned in the credits of XTC's 1986 album Skylarking, where they were thanked for the loan of their guitars.

In 1991, Andy Partridge produced two tracks, "It's Snowing Angels" and "Then She Appeared", intended to be released as a hoax flexidisc attached to the cover of Strange Things Are Happening magazine. Although credited to fictional bands "Big Chief Cigar Choc Champion" and "The Golden", these tracks were a continuation of the Dukes recorded oeuvre in all but name. The magazine folded before the single could be pressed, although "Then She Appeared" would later be reworked for the Nonsuch album. "It's Snowing Angels" was released in 1994 via John Flansburgh's Hello Recording Club (this time credited to the Dukes), and both tracks were included on the Fuzzy Warbles anthology.

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Links & Information

BBC Reviews

  1. Review of 25 O'Clock

    25 O'Clock 2009

    Reviewed by Sid Smith
    Time flies when you're having fun and in 1985 XTC were having plenty of it.
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