After the debacle that was the making of 1982's Groovy Decay, Robyn Hitchcock briefly retired from music, and when he returned it was with an album that offered a thoroughly uncompromised vision of Hitchcock's imagination. Released in 1984, I Often Dream of Trains was a primarily acoustic set with Hitchcock handling nearly all the instruments and vocals by himself; the tone is spare compared to the full-on rock & roll of his recordings with the Soft Boys or his solo debut, Black Snake Diamond Role, but the curious beauty of Hitchcock's melodies is every bit as striking in these stripped-down sessions, and the surreal imagery of "Flavour of Night," "Trams of Old London," and the title song comes to vivid and enchanting life. Hitchcock's off-kilter wit has rarely been as effective as it is on this album; the jaunty harmonies of "Uncorrected Personality Traits" are the ideal complement for the song's psychobabble, "Sounds Great When You're Dead" manages to be funny and a bit disturbing at once, and the drunken campfire singalong of "Ye Sleeping Knights of Jesus" was joyously sloppy enough to inspire a cover by the Replacements.
Silva Screen Records present earlier composers who were masters of music on Hitchcock films, and later films with Bernard Herrmann on the second CD. The "CONCERTO FOR ORCHESTRA" is Miklos Rozsa's haunting theme which lasts over nine minutes is something from heaven. "STRANGERS ON THE TRAIN" the Dimitri Tiomkin contribution is also an outstanding track which can move the unmoveable with the heart-racing pounding sounds that the two composers generate. Both composers Rozsa and Tiomkin have a list of accomplishments a mile long, but to hear their music on a Hitchcock film is pure geneious in film making and scoring.