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Is There an X in In Search of Space?

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  • Is There an X in In Search of Space?

    I picked up a copy of The Shindig! Guide to Space rock - Interstellar Overdrive as mentioned on another thread.

    There is a fair amount about Hawkwind and Mike gets several mentions. Throughout the articles it refers to the band's second album as "X In Search of Space".

    On the Hawkwind Wikipaedia page it is also referred to in this way but not in the Hawkwind Discography Wikipaedia page.

    In all my years as a Hawkwind fan I've never heard or seen it being called "X In Search of Space".

    I can vaguely understand it if someone has taken the stylised X on the front cover to be a pre-fix to the name, or even taken it as meaning something akin to "Group X In Search of Space". However, the band were definitely Hawkwind by then and I've always taken the X on the cover as just part of the design.

    Am I missing something or has someone somewhere misinterpreted the name of the album?
    Let me tell you a story 'bout a poor boy....

  • #2
    Yes the original title is "X In Search Of Space" although most people just refer to it as "In Search Of Space". If you look at the cover of the vinyl, the title does have an X in it.

    In Search Of Space.jpg

    Great album, great band...rock on!
    "He found a coin in his pocket, flipped it. She called: 'Incubus!'
    'Succubus,' he said. 'Lucky old me.'" - Michael Moorcock The Final Programme

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    • #3
      Well I'll be a monkey's uncle! I've never noticed that before, and I even looked at the album cover before I posted the question.

      So, in that case, why the X?
      Let me tell you a story 'bout a poor boy....

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      • #4
        Well that I don't know the answer to. Oddly enough there isn't a space between the X and the In on the front cover, perhaps that was intended. I did a little looking around online, not extensively, and couldn't find anything. I should ask Nik Turner on Facebook, or perhaps Mike knows the answer?
        "He found a coin in his pocket, flipped it. She called: 'Incubus!'
        'Succubus,' he said. 'Lucky old me.'" - Michael Moorcock The Final Programme

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        • #5
          Doing a little more research I found this interesting page discussing the album, and about halfway down or so the mystery of the X in the title or lack there of on the spine and label is explained...

          https://www.headheritage.co.uk/unsun...earch-of-space
          "He found a coin in his pocket, flipped it. She called: 'Incubus!'
          'Succubus,' he said. 'Lucky old me.'" - Michael Moorcock The Final Programme

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          • #6
            I always assumed that the 'X' referred to the traveller.

            The album is (loosely) supposed to be about a 2 dimensional spaceship arriving in a 3d world and I thought the 'X' was supposed to refer to a crew member/the Captain. 'X' is searching for 3-dimensional space, aren't they?

            P.s. funny how the Julian Cope article mentions a typo in the album name but then makes a typo of NT's album name!
            What part of 'Get out of town, Freak' don't you understand?

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            • #7
              I think Cope is putting a bit too much significance on NT's Xitintoday. That strikes me more as a simple play on words around "Exiting today".

              Anyway, that's speculation.

              What is interesting is that I've never heard of the NT album and looking it up on Wikipaedia it looks like the original line up was NT plus half of Gong (Hillage, Howlett, Blake). That is something I would really like to hear.

              Unfortunately, the original is only available on vinyl and I no longer have a means of playing that and the version available on CD is a re-recording using a different set of musicians. And costs £38 on Amazon.

              Oh well. I'll keep an eye our for it and see if I can find a CD version of the original.
              Let me tell you a story 'bout a poor boy....

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              • #8
                For me the X simply means an unknown person or even alien who is "in search of space".

                I listen to Xitintoday quite often in recent years.

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                • #9
                  Thanks for the reminder Atticus. I dived on to Amazon this morning over the bacon butty and grabbed a CD copy of Xitintoday on the Eclectic label for £15.

                  Get in there!
                  Let me tell you a story 'bout a poor boy....

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