Robyn Hitchcock... Gigography

Robyn Hitchcock
Concert appearance: Sat., 8 Mar. 1997

Park West
Clifton Park, New York US

Set list:

Daisy Bomb
The Wind Cries Mary (Jimi Hendrix)
The Devil's Radio
I'm Only You
I Something You
The Yip Song
I Am Not Me electric
You and Oblivion
Only the Stones Remain
Queen of Eyes encore
Glass Hotel acoustic
De Chirico Street

park west, in clifton park (just north of albany), has to be one of the
odder places i've ever seen a hitchcock gig. it's a family
restaurant/sports bar with a fairly large performance space in the back.
based on the "upcoming events," john b. jones (whom, along with his wife
jacci, i had the pleasure to meet -- yes, nick, fegfotos were taken)
ascertained that their usual clientele is the country-and-western-lovin'
sportsfan market. i'm sure it would have been intriguing to hear the
thoughts of either the performers or the usual crowd, as these were two
segments of society that rarely converge. nonetheless, the gig was fairly
well-attended by fairly knowledgable people who gave the dear janes and
robyn a warm welcome.

on first was some local talent whose name escaped me. i'm sure i would have
forgotten it if i had though and his solo acoustic guitar act was equally
forgetable (and, no, i'm not being uncharitable here).

a little bit later, robyn introduced the dear janes. i rather enjoyed their
catchy tunes and sardonic treatment of less than pleasant themes (such as
anti-depressants, suicide and christ-figures). one amusing thing: when the
dear janes came on, they asked everyone to move to closer to the stage.
amazingly, nearly everyone complied, dragging their tables and chairs from
the sides and back of the sptace right up in front of the stage! this
turned out to be a good thing since it greatly improved the enjoyment of
their show and it ensured a good seated view when robyn came on a little

igor then came out and set up the stage: to stage-right, a table with a
(anglepoise?) lamp, fruit, water, coffee, a red book and a napkin. at the
back of the stage, on the drum stand, was the green pylon, sans lightbulb.
at this point, john said something about the kitschyness of the props which
prompted a "robyn kitschcock" comment from me. bad woj. *slap*

when things were ready, in a little tit-for-tat, the dear janes, on their
tippy-toes so they could reach the microphone, introduced robyn. (for those
who care, he was wearing a white shirt, black vest and black jeans.)

as he has at other shows, robyn began with a short reading from the book. i
wonder if that was simply a diversional prop, as the selection he "read"
was as surreal and stream-of-consciousness as any story he's made up on the
spot. he then donned the acoustic and began the set with "daisy bomb",
accompanied by the dear janes who sang along from the stage door.

robyn appeared to be set on leaving the stage for good after the encore,
but the crowd got him back once again and he closed the evening with
another selection from the book (which was, if possible, even more surreal
than the first reading).

some random observations:

"lysander" was introduced with a ramble about an reconaissance airplane
flying high above a checkerboard with huge white chess knights on it,
toliets flushing in ann arbor, computers which have taken over the world
attempting to become more human, and the few people left making a porno
film in the airplane. after finishing the song, he pointed out that the
middle bit was about an american woman wearing headphones while feeding
dogfood to anubis in her london flat which, coincidentially, has the
gateway to eternity in the closet.

"wind cries mary" was introduced in spanish.

i'm still not sure what i think of "feels like 1974". it's alright while
he's playing it and it has a catchy tune, but the song seems a bit too, i
don't know, inside-joke-and-reference-laden. i guess that is often the case
with many of his songs, but it's usually not the focus of the song.

the guitar solo for "only you" was the most together i've heard so far --
usually, it seems as if it is about to fall apart.

"you & oblivion" was stunningly menacing. or menacingly stunning. or both.

'twas very odd to hear "dechirico street" without deni bonet. my mind
involuntarily filled in the violin parts.

i did tape the show. interested parties may feel free to contact me.


If you have an addition or correction, please send an e-mail message about it to Bayard Catron.

If you ever see an error message or a bad link, please send an e-mail message about that to John Hedges.

Back to Query Page
Back to Main Page