Robyn Hitchcock

This Is the BBC

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Compiled by the man himself, This Is the BBC collects 14 cuts from sessions taped between 1996 and 1999, focusing primarily on material from Moss Elixir and Jewels for Sophia. As usual, Hitchcock's banter, intricate guitar-playing, and unpredictable nature makes these more than just demos, outtakes, and by the book renderings of studio cuts. Highlights include the sardonic "Where Do You Go When You Die?," an extended version of the traditional piece "Polly on the Shore" (made famous by Martin Carthy), and a smart rendition of Bob Dylan's "It Takes a Lot to Laugh, It Takes a Train to Cry." The 12-page booklet includes poetry, lyrics, and numerous photos and paintings. Casual fans may not find much to sink their teeth into, but longtime Hitchcock collectors will find This Is the BBC to be an above-average oddity.

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