Todd Rundgren – Something/Anything? (1972)

I first heard of Todd Rundgren when I heard about the Wolftrap Sgt. Peppers show. I researched him on youtube and my curiosity was piqued! So, on the advice of reader fishwater, I picked up Todd Rundgren’s album Something/Anything?

That’s a lot of music! Damn. It seems more like three albums than a double album. As soon as I got it, I listened to a few seconds of a few songs here and there and I thought it sounded kinda dated…I was a little worried.

I loaded my newly acquired TR music onto my iPod, put my headphones on and set off on a 6 mile walk. (6 miles! Yay me!)

And well, this is a GREAT album. I can’t say enough about it. I enjoyed the whole thing, and the word ‘dated’ never crossed my mind. Everything sounds fresh and interesting. Some songs I liked more than others, but I enjoyed listening to the entire album.

Todd Rundgren’s lyrics are interesting. Sometimes they seem like reading someone’s mind. He doesn’t pretty up those thoughts or anything. He just puts them out there in simple, straightforward words, sometimes trite (“It takes two to tango”), but it’s honest, and he gets pretty deep that way. All that said, it’s the music that is the real star of this show.

I’ve only been through the album once. I’m including some of the songs that jumped out at me on the first run through. I think it is safe to say I like the more ‘unusal’ songs. But there is something for everybody on this album.

I Went To The Mirror. I hit replay on that one. That’s a big deal because I had so much music to get through and I didn’t have time to be replaying stuff the first time through. But I dig that song. I could have written that song. LOL. Some mornings are tough.

Some Folks Is Even Whiter Than Me. Some folks is blacker than me…I’m stuck somewhere in the middle. Talkin ‘bout your outside…talking about your inside too. (Can you tell I dig this song, too?)

Black Maria…wow. Classic.

Little Red Lights My inner rocker loves this one.

The Night The Carousel Burned Down

One More Day (No Word)

and of course….I Saw The Light

So there you have my first listen stand-outs.

I love this album.


5 Responses to “Todd Rundgren – Something/Anything? (1972)”

  1. 1 fishwater
    June 22, 2008 at 4:22 am

    Glad you got to check this out. There’s certainly a lot to digest in this album! Can you imagine something like this being released (and being a big hit!) today??

  2. June 22, 2008 at 1:53 pm

    No, I can’t imagine something like this being released today…

    BUT, if by some miracle something like this were to be released today (and when I say ‘like this’ I mean huge, creative, and cutting edge), I could imagine it being a hit…yes. There are legions of young people looking for something good, something real, something creative, and above all something different, that they can really set their young ears to appreciating. Just look at how Pink Floyd’s “The Wall” is a hit with each and every successive generation of teens…they want something that blows their minds. And the music snob-ish teens these days are not wearing t-shirts of today’s bands, they are wearing t-shirts of bands from the 70’s! They want David Bowie!

    When it comes to rock ‘n’ roll, the industry has proven that while it knows what makes the tweens tick, it has forgotten that teens and young adults are hungry for original art. Poor rock ‘n’ roll! Where has the innovation gone?

  3. 3 alanbryson
    August 14, 2008 at 1:54 am

    Great recording, of course the amazing thing about it was that Todd played all the instruments and sang everything – a complete solo overdubbed masterpiece.

  4. October 28, 2008 at 11:32 pm

    Yes, there’s a reason my blog is called Something/Anything. It’s a state of musical mind that could operate across any kind of contemporary music.

    Anyone who aspires to write pop or rock songs should listen to this album. It’s a fascinating run through all the styles available in the early 70ies. Then Todd heard Mahavishnu Orchestra and jumped on the progressive/fusion rock for a while, but that’s another story.

    Then there are all the other Todd albums waiting to be explored.

  5. 5 The Dude
    March 12, 2010 at 8:51 pm

    For me, the entire 4th side is the masterpiece. Starts off with Todd’s old bands recorded very amateurishly. Probably reel to reel mono with one mike in the middle of the room. Two different bands. Then the fun starts. “Dust in the Wind” is my personal favorite on the album. “Piss Arron” (sp?)is just hilarious. “You Really Left Me Sore” as a public service piece about the dangers of herpes, the worst venereal disease you could get at the time, is very silly. Pythonesque almost. “Some Folks is Even Whiter Than Me” was quite a statement at the time. Poking fun at the idiocy of racism was pretty ballsy in the early seventies. “SLUT” is the perfect ending for a very irreverent side. The liner notes state that Todd felt he had heard Black Maria before he recorded it. What is strange is I’d bought this album, yes, vinyl, (I’m that old), secondhand. It didn’t have the liner notes in it, but yet that was my first thought upon first listen to the song as well. When I finally ran across a copy of the liner notes I was blown away. This album is a true masterpiece. Glad someone of a younger generation appreciates it as well.

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