This reissue of ELEMENT OF LIGHT includes the original album plus four songs that were added as bonuses to the first CD issue, five previously unreleased demos and live tracks, and "The Can Opener," originally released on the 12-inch vinyl EP: IF YOU WERE A PRIEST.
Robyn Hitchcock & The Egyptians: Robyn Hitchcock (vocals, guitar, piano, bass, keyboards); Morris Windsor (guitar, drums, percussion, background vocals); Andy Metcalfe (piano, keyboards, bass, drums, percussion, background vocals); Roger Jackson (harmonica, electric piano, organ, keyboards, background vocals).
Additional personnel: James Fletcher (saxophone); Chris Cox (trumpet, acoustic bass, percussion).
Producers: Robyn Hitchcock, Andy Metcalfe.
Reissue producer: Jim Neill.
Engineers: Pat Collier, Steve Robertshaw.
Originally released on Relativity. Includes liner notes by Grant Alden.
Robyn Hitchcock & the Egyptians: Robyn Hitchcock (vocals, guitar, piano, keyboards); Morris Windsor (vocals, guitar, keyboards, drums); Andy Metcalfe (vocals, piano, organ, keyboards, bass instrument, drums); Roger Jackson (vocals, keyboards, bass instrument).
Personnel: Chris Cox (percussion).
Audio Mixers: Jessica Corcoran; Pat Collier; Andy Metcalfe; Robyn Hitchcock.
Audio Remasterers: Donal Whelan; Charlie Francis.
Recording information: Alaska (1985-1986); Berry Street Studios (1985-1986); Town & Country Club (1985-1986).
Photographers: Rosalind Kunath; Jason Hoffman; Paul Natkin.
This is Hitchcock's second album with The Egyptians. The band's performance proves that the touring they did prior to this recording helped shape their sound into a surprisingly cohesive force. ELEMENT OF LIGHT is a rich and powerful work that contains some strikingly evocative songs, such as the Lennon-like "Somewhere Apart," the nightscape poetics of "Raymond Chandler Evening," or the UK-meets-Muscle Shoals of "Ted, Woody And Junior."
The album's title comes from the song "Airscape," a gorgeously romantic five minutes of hypnotic words and music. The songcraft, mood and musicianship (The Egyptians were a band fully capable of taking the songwriter's varied compositions and playing them to new heights) make ELEMENT OF LIGHT crucial for Hitchcock fans, and an excellent starting point for those unfamiliar with this compelling artist.