Robyn Hitchcock: Love From London (Yep Roc)

 |   |  <1 min read

Robyn Hitchcock: Stupified
Robyn Hitchcock: Love From London (Yep Roc)

A quintessentially British songwriter in the same company as Ray Davies, the young Damon Albarn and Paul Weller, Hitchcock also possesses an English eccentricity. Few could pull off a song entitled I Want To Be An Anglepoise Lamp as he did for his first band the Soft Boys.

Now just turned 60 and still ignored by mainstream attention, he pares things back to crisply simple melodies delivered with a minimal embellishment (Lennon-like with a nod to the Rutles on the piano-propelled Stupefied) and his clearly enunciated vocals offer slightlydelic observations (the electro-trippy I Love You).

For every song oozing damaged beauty (the Syd Barrett-like Be Still, and Strawberry Dress) there's another twisting into the chaos of contemporary life and love (the mashing guitar menace of Fix You sounding closer to the Gallaghers).

And sometimes both aspects are drawn together (the lugubrious Harry's Song, the effortless Lennon-Brian Wilson style of Death and Love).

Hitchcock has done stronger albums (Ole! Tarantula and Goodnight Oslo, both with the Venus 3 which included REM's Peter Buck come to mind) and some songs here are Robyn-by-rote. But the best (the string-enhanced, six minute End of Time) are utterly persuasive.

A survivor, God bless 'im.

There is more on Robyn Hitchcock (and the Soft Boys) at Elsewhere starting here.


Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   Music articles index

The Topp Twins: Honky Tonk Angel (Topp)

The Topp Twins: Honky Tonk Angel (Topp)

To be perfectly honest I went off the Topp Twins very quickly: around the time of the Women's Web Collective album Out of the Corners of '82 and in a few subsequent years I thought they were... > Read more

The Waifs: Temptation (Jarrah)

The Waifs: Temptation (Jarrah)

This award-winning Australian folk-rock-blues outfit is much tougher than their fragile name suggests and over five albums, an EP and considerable touring at home and in the States (where they... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

Joanie Sommers: Johnny Get Angry (1962)

Joanie Sommers: Johnny Get Angry (1962)

While not quite in the league of He Hit Me and It Felt Like a Kiss, this sliver of semi-innocent pop sounds slightly uncomfortable these days. Poor Joanie, just wanting to get a response from... > Read more

THE BARGAIN BUY: Margie Joseph; Original Album Series (Atlantic/Rhino)

THE BARGAIN BUY: Margie Joseph; Original Album Series (Atlantic/Rhino)

The point of the on-going weekly Bargain Buy suggestion is not just to direct readers to fine music going cheap, but to also encourage you to take a chance on an unknown or only vaguely familiar... > Read more