Recorded at the Marquee in London shortly after the release of Fegmania!
, the live Gotta Let This Hen Out!
is a tense and exciting record, finding the raw energy that usually goes untapped in Robyn Hitchcock
's music. Although the album makes the Egyptians
sound more like a rock & roll band than they actually were -- they never played with such reckless abandon before or since -- the driving performances don't wreck the melodic and lyrical eccentricities of the songs; instead, the increased vigor gives the music a searing power, obliterating the notion that Hitchcock
's songs are delicate and precious. The set list also accentuates Hitchcock
's strengths, relying on his most accessible and melodic material, whether it's newer Egyptians
material like "Egyptian Cream," "Sometimes I Wish I Was a Pretty Girl," and "Acid Bird," or earlier Soft Boys
tracks like "Kingdom of Love," "Only the Stones Remain," "The Face of Death," and "Leppo and the Jooves." [In 2008 Yep Roc released a new version of Gotta Let This Hen Out!
that included the original album re-mastered, bonus cuts and expanded packaging.]