Album Details

August 19, 2008
Yep Roc
Pop/Rock, Jangle Pop, Neo-Psychedelia, Alternative Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, College Rock, Alternative Singer/Songwriter

Album Review

The second installment in Yep Roc's mammoth Robyn Hitchcock reissue series introduces the Egyptians (bass player Andy Metcalfe and drummer Morris Windsor) into the mix, collecting Fegmania!, the live Gotta Let This Hen Out!, and Element of Light, along with a double disc of B-sides called A Bad Case of History. Luminous Groove, like its 2007 predecessor, I Wanna Go Backwards, makes available all of its components (with the exception of the "rarities" compilation) separately, which may be maddening to longtime fans who already replaced their original copies with the early-'90s Rhino reissues and just want the bonus stuff. Like the Rhino releases, each album is stocked with B-sides, most of which fall in the "demo" or "typically surreal" categories -- Hitchcock seemingly records every idea he has, making the prospect for bonus cuts on future reissues mind-boggling. The two remastered studio albums represent a creative peak for the notoriously eccentric Englishman, laying the foundation for his more commercial A&M years, but it's the Bad Case of History overview that makes Luminous Groove worth the price for "a cardboard box with five CDs stuffed in it." Unlike I Wanna Go Backwards' bonus disc, which grabbed tracks from previously released collections (specifically 1995's You & Oblivion), History revels in its obscurity, boasting 15 unreleased studio tracks (many of which, like a laconic dream pop rendition of the beloved Highland ballad "Wild Mountain Thyme" and a sneering punk rock face-peeler called "Zipper in My Spine," are absolute gems) and 17 mid-'90s live cuts that dip into A&M territory. Sure, it's a typically "Hitchcockian" mess of competing genres, melodic left turns, and obscure references to fish and fowl, but it only reinforces his "outsider" cultural significance, and dutifully whets the appetite for this tasty meal's third course.
James Christopher Monger, Rovi

Track Listing

  1. Egyptian Cream
  2. Another Bubble
  3. I'm Only You
  4. My Wife and My Dead Wife
  5. Goodnight I Say
  6. The Man with the Lightbulb Head
  7. Insect Mother
  8. Strawberry Mind
  9. Glass
  10. The Fly
  11. Heaven
  12. Heaven End Bit
  13. Bells of Rhymney [#]
  14. Some Body [#]
  15. Heaven [Live] [Live][#]
  16. The Pit Of Souls [#]
  17. The Drowning Church [#]
  18. The Man With The Lightbulb Head [Instrumental] [#][Instrumental]
  19. Lady Obvious [#]
  20. Sometimes I Wish I Was a Pretty Girl [Live]
  21. Kingdom of Love [Live]
  22. Acid Bird [Live]
  23. The Cars She Used To Drive [Live]
  24. My Wife and My Dead Wife [Live]
  25. Brenda's Iron Sledge [Live]
  26. The Fly [Live]
  27. Only the Stones Remain [Live]
  28. Egyptian Cream [Live]
  29. Leppo and the Jooves [Live]
  30. America [Live]
  31. Heaven [Live]
  32. Listening to the Higsons [Live]
  33. The Face Of Death [Live]
  34. If You Were a Priest [Live]
  35. I'm Only You [Live]
  36. Unsettled [Live]
  37. Freeze [Live]
  38. Egyptian Cream #2
  39. If You Were a Priest
  40. Winchester
  41. Somewhere Apart
  42. Ted, Woody and Junior
  43. The President
  44. Raymond Chandler Evening
  45. Bass
  46. Airscape
  47. Never Stop Bleeding
  48. Lady Waters & The Hooded One
  49. The Black Crow Knows [#]
  50. The Crawling [#]
  51. The Leopard [#]
  52. Tell Me About Your Drugs [#]
  53. Sprinkling Dots [#]
  54. Upside-Down Church Blues [#]
  55. Into It [#]
  56. Neck [#]
  57. Bass [Demo] [#][Demo Version]
  58. Lady Waters & The Hooded One [Demo] [Mix I][#][Demo Version]
  59. Bad Case of History [*]
  60. In Agony of Pleasure [*]
  61. Poisonous Angel [*]
  62. Live Man Die [*]
  63. Furry Baby [*]
  64. Evil Guy [*]
  65. Hanging out with Dad [*]
  66. Wild Mountain Thyme [*]
  67. Ivy Alone [*]
  68. I Am Not Me [*]
  69. Surfer Ghost [*]
  70. Beautiful Queen [*]
  71. Testosterone Blues [*]
  72. Zipper in My Spine [*]
  73. Lost Tribes [*]
  74. Child of the Universe [Live][*]
  75. Freeze [Live][*]
  76. Veins of the Queen [Live][*]
  77. The Ruling Class [Live][*]
  78. So You Think You're in Love [Live][*]
  79. Driving Aloud [Live][*]
  80. Wax Doll [Live][*]
  81. The Living Years [Live][*]
  82. Eight Miles High [Live][*]
  83. Chimes of Freedom [Live][*]
  84. Railway Shoes [Live][*]
  85. Arms of Love [Live][*]
  86. Moon Inside [Live][*]
  87. Globe of Frogs [Live][*]
  88. V & D [Live][*]
  89. Wafflehead [Live][*]
  90. Wreck of the Arthur Lee [Live][*]