Since he appeared on the scene in the late '70s as a member of the Soft Boys, Robyn Hitchcock has been making music that melds classic pop songcraft with a wonderfully surreal lyrical style. Imagine the melodic gifts of a smoked-out Paul McCartney and the acerbic, kaleidoscopic wordplay of John Lennon in "I Am the Walrus" mode residing in one person and you've got some sense of Hitchcock. "Ole! Tarantula" is taken from a new maxi-single that was released in conjunction with the premiere of "Sex, Food, Death ... & Insects," a new Hitchcock documentary you can catch on the Sundance Channel. As you'll hear, no one else makes the statement "I feel like a three-legged chinchilla" seem so natural. Fewer still is the number of people who can put those strange sentiments to such sparkling, cleverly arranged guitar pop.
-- David Marchese