Robyn Hitchcock & the Egyptians | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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Robyn Hitchcock & the Egyptians

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Reality is for people who just can't handle Robyn Hitchcock. He's been making records that are fantastic in both senses since his early tenure with England's Soft Boys, whose dark and lovely Underwater Moonlight sounds vaguely like the Beatles undergoing psychoanalysis. His more ethereal Egyptians can out-Sgt. Pepper any band of Beatle wannabes when they want to, but they'd be too bored. Linear story lines in humdrum pop cliches just aren't Hitchcock's way. Once you get used to his mouthful of metaphors, though, Robyn's just an ordinary guy who happens to have a balloon man exploding inside his hand, insects crawling under his skin, a light bulb head that turns itself on, and a dead wife who stops over for coffee. Literal-minded detractors sometimes describe his music as escapist, which is a little like having Norman Rockwell accuse Rene Magritte of having no insights about modern life. Rather than numbing his mind in a chemical haze, Hitchcock sees worlds of possibility in small details that are ordinarily overlooked. His first major-label album, Globe of Frogs, should expand his audience beyond the college-radio devotees who already worship the water he walks on. Saturday, 7:30 PM, Cabaret Metro, 3730 N. Clark; 549-0203.

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