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TODD RUNDGREN

Crossover Prog • United States


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Todd Rundgren biography
Todd Harry Rundgren - Born June 22, 1948 in Upper Darby, Pennsylvania, U.S.

Rundgren played in several bands in New Jersey and Philadelphia during the mid to late 60's including the blues based Woody's Truck Stop, before forming The Nazz, in 1967. Playing both guitar and bass, Rundgren unapologetically drew inspiration from UK bands such as The Move & The Yardbirds, and, in signing to SGC records, they released Nazz Nazz in 1969.

When the band split, Rundgren simultaneously went in to producing and engineering for Bearsville Records, while forming his own band 'Runt'; a vehicle for his own solo career, the eponymous debut for which he released in 1970, which included the Top 40 hit 'We Gotta Get You A Woman'. It was however his reputation for production which ironically gained momentum, engineering The Band & Jesse Winchester, before Badfinger's 'Straight Up' gave him the hit 'Baby Blue'.

This success enabled him to produce his own, critically acclaimed power pop-oriented double album, 'Something/ Anything?' in 1972, upon which he played every instrument. With the door to success opening to him, he spurned it with future releases, such as 1973's eclectic follow-up, A Wizard, A True Star, and 1974's more progressive Todd, which contained several lengthy, experimental instrumentals. Rundgren's music was at its most progressive with his band UTOPIA (a band consisting of three keyboard players), which released Todd Rundgren's Utopia and Initiation in 1974 & 75 respectively, and Another Live, which showcased the bands experimental synthesiser work, with epics mostly over 10 minutes long.

During this period, his music addressed cosmic themes, a reflection of his strong interest in far Eastern religion and philosophy. It is this period of Rundgren's solo work, running parallel with 'Utopia' which will be of most interest to the progressive rock fan, as his music not only displayed psychedelic rock influences, but also the avant-garde Jazz Fusion of artists such as Mahavishnu Orchestra and Frank Zappa. This was underlined by Rundgren's increasingly lavish, ambitious stage settings, which echoed the space-themed shows of acts like Funkedelic & Parliament.

Rundgren's 1976 album Faithful, saw him return to the rock/pop genre which has brought him some success in the early '70s, with a side of original songs, and a side of 60's covers, such as Good Vibrations. This continued with 1978's ...
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Very Best ofVery Best of
Rhino 1997
$7.79
$2.40 (used)
The Complete Bearsville Albums Collection (13CD)The Complete Bearsville Albums Collection (13CD)
Box set
Bearsville 2016
$40.08
$130.16 (used)
Something / Anything [2 SACD]Something / Anything [2 SACD]
Hybrid SACD - DSD
Analog Spark 2018
$23.10
$30.82 (used)
A CappellaA Cappella
Rhino 1990
$4.73 (used)
All Sides Of The Roxy: May 1978All Sides Of The Roxy: May 1978
Box set
Esoteric 2018
$17.51
$15.00 (used)
A Wizard A True StarA Wizard A True Star
Limited Edition
Friday Music 2014
$39.97
$14.98 (used)
Hermit Of Mink HollowHermit Of Mink Hollow
Bearsville 1992
$18.88
$4.81 (used)
Up Against ItUp Against It
Import [Generic] 1999
$36.52 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
TODD RUNDGREN NEARLY HUMAN NEW VINYL USD $58.79 Buy It Now
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Todd Rundgren's Utopia / Another Live (2-CD Set) - Todd Rundgren - Audio CD USD $49.97 Buy It Now
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TODD RUNDGREN Initiation JAPAN CD VDP-28019 1988 OBI USD $61.85 Buy It Now
TODD RUNDGREN HERMIT OF MINK HOLLOW ORIGINAL UK 33rpm LP VERY GOOD USD $4.60 [0 bids]
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An Evening With Todd Rundgren (CD & DVD Package) USD $21.71 Buy It Now
1973 Todd Rundgren A Wizard, A True Star 12" Vinyl LP Record Bearsville BR 2133 USD $19.99 Buy It Now
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TODD RUNDGREN'S UTOPIA-same '74 UK LP ORIG. PROG.BAND. NAZZ USD $13.15 Buy It Now
TODD RUNDGREN-initiation '75 UK LP ORIG+INN PSYCH S/WRITER. NAZZ USD $13.15 Buy It Now
Todd Rundgren - Todd S/T - Cassette Tape album 1990 (1974 album) USD $1.32 [0 bids]
Todd Rundgren Back To The Bars Rare Bearsville Original Sealed Double Lp USD $24.99 Buy It Now
Runt Self Title Rare Bearsville Original Todd Rundgren Sealed Lp USD $19.99 Buy It Now
Todd Rundgren Something To Fall Back On on 45 USD $2.99 Buy It Now
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Todd Rundgren Vinyl LP Record A Wizard True Star Bearsville Warner BR2133 G+/G+ USD $23.97 Buy It Now
Todd Rundgren's Johnson Live CD with DVD NEW USD $15.32 Buy It Now
LP 33 Runt. The Ballad of Todd Rundgren (1971, Bearsville records) VG/VG USD $2.99 [0 bids]
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? Todd Rundgren - Healing (Bearsville 3522) (with a bonus 7") ('81) USD $19.99 Buy It Now
RUNT - We Gotta Get You A Woman 1970 TODD RUNDGREN Pop Rock 7" Ampex USD $1.29 Buy It Now
Todd Rundgren Cd The Final Rock Collection / Rhino Sealed 0081227418625 USD $22.06 Buy It Now
TODD RUNDGREN (Initiation) CD Brand New Sealed USD $5.77 Buy It Now
ADVENTURES IN UTOPIA TODD RUNDGREN BRK 6991 A-1U/B-1U LP Nr MINT VINYL USD $19.72 Buy It Now
BONNIE TYLER & TODD RUNDGREN 'Loving You's A Dirty Job...' 1985 UK 7"/45 rpm USD $5.91 Buy It Now
Led Zeppelin Knebworth 1979 Official Programme Southside Johnny Todd Rundgren USD $39.45 Buy It Now
Tame Impala - Elephant Vinyl 12" Todd Rundgren Remix Psych-Rock Lonerism Modular USD $10.00 [0 bids]
Runt s/t self titled LP Bearsville 1970 VG+ [Todd Rundgren] USD $9.95 Buy It Now 54s
Todd Rundgren - Back to the Bars - 2 LP -SEALED - Bearsville RNDA 71109 USD $20.00 Buy It Now 19m 36s
(IJ116) Todd Rundgren, I Saw The Light / Black Maria - 1972 - 7 inch vinyl USD $5.25 [0 bids]
22m 34s
TODD RUNDGREN 'UTOPIA' RECORD ALBUM in VERYGOOD+ cond USD $3.00 [0 bids]
35m 11s
Todd Rundgren & Utop - Live At The Old Waldorf [New Vinyl] Gold, Ltd Ed USD $26.40 Buy It Now 42m 46s
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Todd Rundgren's Utopia "Another Live" LP with lyrics insert USD $4.95 Buy It Now 1h 55m
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Todd Rundgren's Utopia Bearsville Records 1974 USD $7.99 Buy It Now 2h 27m
Todd Rundgren - Another Side of Roxy - CD - Rhino - CRCL7715 - Japan, 2001 OOP  USD $34.50 Buy It Now 2h 34m
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Todd Rundgren ; Hermit of Mink Hollow on LP USD $7.99 [0 bids]
2h 53m
Todd Rundgren - An Evening With Todd Rundgren-Live At The Ridgefield Vinyl LP USD $21.98 Buy It Now 2h 54m
Todd Rundgren & Utopia - Live At The Old Waldorf Vinyl LP USD $34.98 Buy It Now 2h 59m
TODD RUNDGREN: Healing LP (w/ bonus 7", sl cw) Rock & Pop USD $10.00 Buy It Now 3h
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Todd Rundgren - Todd Vinyl LP USD $39.98 Buy It Now 3h 4m
NAZZ 1971 SGC LP NAZZ III Todd Rundgren Original shrink wrap George Piros Stamp USD $75.00 Buy It Now 3h 9m
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Todd Rundgren record album Runt USD $14.50 Buy It Now 3h 33m
TODD RUNDGREN 2LP: Something/Anything?, Gatefold Bearsville Records 1972 USD $15.00 Buy It Now 3h 41m
Todd Rundgren - Faithful (CD 2007) NEW AND SEALED USD $3.63 Buy It Now 4h 7m
TODD RUNDGREN A Cappella ORIGINAL SEALED LP 1985 25128-1 CutOut USD $28.89 Buy It Now 4h 11m
1978 ROCK LIVE DOUBLE LP - TODD RUNDGREN - BEARSVILLE 6986 - "BACK TO THR BARS" USD $9.00 Buy It Now 4h 38m
SEALED Todd Rundgren Utopia Another LIVE 1975 Bearsville records BR6961 LP WB USD $17.00 Buy It Now 4h 41m
1978 LIVE ROCK DOUBLE LP - TODD RUNDGREN - BEARSVILLE 6986 - "BACK TO THR BARS" USD $10.00 Buy It Now 4h 48m
70s ROCK LP - TODD RUNDGREN - BEARSVILLE 10105 - "RUNT" USD $10.00 Buy It Now 5h 7m
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TODD RUNDGREN - Liars - CD - **BRAND NEW/STILL SEALED** - RARE USD $82.49 Buy It Now 5h 27m
New Evening With Todd Rundgren-Live At The Ridgefield - Rock USD $21.40 Buy It Now 5h 32m
Todd Rundgren - State (2013 CD) New & Sealed USD $4.80 Buy It Now 5h 40m
todd rundgren cold morning light hello its me 7" USD $7.95 Buy It Now 5h 44m
Utopia 1977 "Oops Wrong Planet" Todd Rundgren RARE MINT LPVinyl Progressive Rock USD $15.99 Buy It Now 5h 48m
Todd Rundgren - Initiation LP VG+ BR 6957 Bearsville Stereo 1975 Vinyl Record USD $12.60 Buy It Now 5h 52m
Faithful by Todd Rundgren CD, Jan-1987, Rhino FREE SHIP USD $6.38 Buy It Now 6h 2m
TODD RUNDGREN'S UTOPIA - "Todd Rundgren's Utopia" - 1974 Vintage Vinyl LP-EX/VG+ USD $8.99 Buy It Now 6h 10m
Runddans:Todd Rundgren,Emil Nikolaisen &Hans-Peter Lindstrom(Format: Audio CD) USD $13.99 Buy It Now 6h 42m
RADIO SHOW: 70's w/STEVE GODDARD 12/31/11 NEW YEARS HITS: TODD RUNDGREN, MELANIE USD $28.99 Buy It Now 6h 49m
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TODD RUNDGREN a wizard, a true star (1st uk & lyric insert) LP EX-/EX K 45513 USD $48.47 Buy It Now 10h 52m
Todd Rundgren Complete Bearsville Albums Collection box set 13 CD NEW sealed USD $83.61 Buy It Now 11h 19m
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TODD RUNDGREN cd NO WORLD ORDER 16 tracks PROPERTY nwo Fascist Christ USD $12.99 Buy It Now 13h 34m
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Todd Rundgren's Utopia Live At Hammersmith Odeon 1975 CD NEW SEALED USD $7.88 Buy It Now 15h
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Todd Rundgren-State (UK IMPORT) CD NEW USD $15.62 Buy It Now 17h 46m
TODD RUNDGREN HELLO IT'S ME excellent+ 1972 UK VINYL 45 SINGLE USD $5.26 [0 bids]
18h 15m
TODD RUNDGREN I SAW THE LIGHT excellent+ 1972 UK VINYL 45 SINGLE USD $6.58 [0 bids]
18h 17m
TODD RUNDGREN/UTOPIA(LOT OF 5)LPs USD $49.98 Buy It Now 19h 17m
OST LP UNDER COVER TODD RUNDGREN TSOL AGENT ORANGE V/A 1987 ENIGMA SEALED USD $19.98 Buy It Now 20h 13m
An Evening With Todd Rundgren - Live At The Ridgefield (NEW CD & DVD) USD $22.35 Buy It Now 20h 19m
An Evening With Todd Rundgren - Live At The Ridgefield (NEW 12" VINYL LP) USD $31.29 Buy It Now 20h 20m
An Evening With Todd Rundgren - Live At The Ridgefield (NEW BLU-RAY) USD $25.50 Buy It Now 20h 40m
Todd Rundgren Todd Rungren's Utopia Live At The Fox Theater 1973 Vinyl 2 LP NEW USD $41.80 Buy It Now 20h 51m
TODD RUNDGREN Global 2015 vinyl LP SEALED/NEW Utopia USD $19.64 Buy It Now 21h 53m
Todd Rundgren - No World Order (CD, Jul-1993, Forward) LIKE NEW USD $4.39 Buy It Now 21h 54m
Hello People "The Handsome Devils" LP - Todd Rundgren Produced & Engineered USD $5.50 Buy It Now 22h 2m

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TODD RUNDGREN discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

TODD RUNDGREN top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.03 | 42 ratings
Runt
1970
2.33 | 45 ratings
Runt: The Ballad of Todd Rundgren
1971
3.26 | 73 ratings
Something/Anything?
1972
3.97 | 98 ratings
A Wizard, a True Star
1973
3.99 | 77 ratings
Todd
1974
3.84 | 73 ratings
Initiation
1975
2.90 | 43 ratings
Faithful
1976
3.10 | 41 ratings
Hermit of Mink Hollow
1978
3.01 | 36 ratings
Healing
1981
2.06 | 34 ratings
The Ever Popular Tortured Artist Effect
1983
2.51 | 28 ratings
A Cappella
1985
3.10 | 27 ratings
Nearly Human
1989
2.54 | 23 ratings
2nd Wind
1991
1.70 | 22 ratings
No World Order
1993
2.61 | 13 ratings
No World Order, Lite
1994
2.19 | 14 ratings
The Individualist
1995
2.86 | 9 ratings
With a Twist
1997
2.50 | 3 ratings
Up Against It
1998
2.16 | 12 ratings
One Long Year
2000
3.28 | 22 ratings
Liars
2004
2.89 | 18 ratings
Arena
2008
3.80 | 5 ratings
Todd Rundgren's Johnson
2011
3.00 | 4 ratings
(re)Production
2011
2.31 | 15 ratings
State
2013
2.60 | 5 ratings
Global
2015
3.05 | 4 ratings
Runddans (with Emil Nikolaisen & Hans-Peter Lindstrom)
2015
3.70 | 11 ratings
White Knight
2017

TODD RUNDGREN Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.67 | 19 ratings
Back to the Bars
1978

TODD RUNDGREN Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

TODD RUNDGREN Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.20 | 6 ratings
Anthology (1968 - 1985)
1989
3.08 | 5 ratings
The Very Best of Todd Rundgren
1997
4.67 | 3 ratings
The Best Of Todd Rundgren - Go Ahead. Ignore Me
1999
5.00 | 1 ratings
The Definitive Rock Collection
2006

TODD RUNDGREN Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

TODD RUNDGREN Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 A Wizard, a True Star by RUNDGREN, TODD album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.97 | 98 ratings

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A Wizard, a True Star
Todd Rundgren Crossover Prog

Review by Progfan97402
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Something/Anything was a big commercial and critical success, he was branded as the male answer to Carole King, which I guess he didn't want that comparison, so he purposely made his followup, A Wizard, A True Star to be very different. Much more quirky, twisted, and experimental, I wouldn't be surprised in the least if Frank Zappa was a big influence on him at this point. "International Feel" sounds pretty normal, but a great piece. It sorta reminds me of Spirit's "Mr. Skin" if dominated by clavinet, but then after that it's clear that he really took the VCS-3 synthesizer to much greater use (he used it in a more low-key manner on Something/Anything), here he uses it frequently for strange electronic effects. He was purposely trying to record an album that won't give a hit single, and I'm not too surprised if this irritated the rock critics at the time. I have to admit I never cared for the medley of soul and Motown songs, it just doesn't fit too well with the more artsy and experimental pop surrounding the album. Regardless, listening to this, it's little surprise that he would actually explore prog rock for real with Utopia the following year. The more mainstream crowd would be more comfortable with Something/Anything, but for the more adventurous, if you forget about that soul/Motown medley, this is really some great stuff and worth having.
 No World Order, Lite by RUNDGREN, TODD album cover Studio Album, 1994
2.61 | 13 ratings

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No World Order, Lite
Todd Rundgren Crossover Prog

Review by ghost_of_morphy
Prog Reviewer

2 stars Todd has never been afraid of experimenting in different genres, as he shows here.

No World Order was a gimmicky release designed to let te listener simulate certain aspects of engineering an album. Certainly this was an interesting idea, but the resulting tracks had an incomplete sound to them.

A year later, Todd released No World Order Lite, incorporating this material in a more traditional and more listenable format. Todd has significantly updated his sound. incorporating elements of rap and hip hop along with a ponderous array of studio manipulated sound. Rap. hip hop, excessively manipulated sound.... that pretty much sums up the low points of this album, and those low points are pervasive.

On the other hand, the actual songs (the ones that are really songs) show some glimmers of interest here and there. Yes, this album is forgettable, but parts of it are quite pleasant and nearly all of it is listenable. Two stars for this confusing mish mash that occasionally melds into coherence.

 Something/Anything? by RUNDGREN, TODD album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.26 | 73 ratings

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Something/Anything?
Todd Rundgren Crossover Prog

Review by Progfan97402
Prog Reviewer

3 stars I really couldn't see the fuss on this album. It's the same feeling I have for the Beatles' White Album. It would have served much better as a single LP as there's too much messing about for a consistent release. "I Saw the Light" and the remake of the old Nazz song from 1968, "Hello, It's Me" were the big hits on this album, the latter having a faster pace than the '68 original. The best stuff is when he takes creative twists to the songs, like "The Night The Carosel Burned Down", the instrumental "Breathless" and "Song of the Viking". "It Wouldn't Have Made Any Difference" is a piano-oriented ballad, but I simply don't care for it, although it sounded like it could become an AM hit at the time. "Hello, It's Me" was originally recorded by Todd's old band, The Nazz, and of course it's the remade version that everyone's familiar with, and I have always enjoyed this song, even when heard on the radio. I hadn't heard this album in years, but I remembered that, for every brilliant song was a song that I could do without. I obviously didn't expect something full-on prog like Utopia's debut, that would be ridiculous. To me, I found A Wizard, a True Star an improvement (although I could do without the medley of soul ballads, as most others can agree on). Certainly Something/Anything is quite diverse but it's really hit or miss, so three stars, it is.
 White Knight by RUNDGREN, TODD album cover Studio Album, 2017
3.70 | 11 ratings

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White Knight
Todd Rundgren Crossover Prog

Review by cartwing

4 stars the last good or just acceptable Album I heard from Todd was the - to my opinion underrated album "Second wind". I was a fan before I found my way to the world of prog, but I wouldnt describe any of his albums as progressive rock ´with two exceptions. "Initiation" and the first "Utopia" album. So this new album is as far away from anything similar to prog as you can imagiine. BUT it is in fact the first album I could listen to from the beginning to the end without pushing the red button. After "Todd Rundgren and friends" this is another album on which he works together with big names such as Daryl Hall or Donald Fagen. Some good tracks on this one even when you compare it with the last few albums. different Music styles are mixed together here but thats just what makes it special. I guess it deserves 4 stars just for the fact that it is real music again...
 Healing by RUNDGREN, TODD album cover Studio Album, 1981
3.01 | 36 ratings

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Healing
Todd Rundgren Crossover Prog

Review by CassandraLeo

4 stars It's a bit beyond me why this album has been so overlooked in Rundgren's catalogue. The album is certainly a product of its time, which means that anyone who doesn't like the sound of '80s synthesizers won't find much to enjoy here. It's also true that, because the songs are a bit more low-key than Rundgren's usual fare, they aren't as immediately catchy as many parts of his catalogue are. However, it's unique in Rundgren's catalogue and, as far as I can ascertain, the whole canon of recorded music.

Rundgren eases you into the album with straightforward synth-pop songs, and the last two songs on the CD version are also straightforward synth-pop (they are included as a separate 7" single on the vinyl, which I will discuss later). However, the midsection of the album - "Shine" and the title track - is an effective fusion of synth-pop and progressive rock, and I haven't heard anything else like them. Perhaps someone like Mike Oldfield was attempting similar material at the time, but there's an atmosphere here that's somewhat different from that of Oldfield's work.

I think part of the reason this album often gets overlooked is because it demands too much patience from listeners who are expecting simple pop songs, but it also contrasts with the flashy showmanship of Rundgren's mid- seventies material. "Healing" runs for twenty minutes, and while it's far from a straightforward verse-chorus-bridge pop song (the song is divided into three tracks because they are discrete parts of the work, not merely for ease of CD navigation), it also doesn't rely on displays of instrumental virtuosity like the best of Utopia's material and Rundgren's mid-'70s solo work did. But that's not the point - the point is to take the listener on an elaborate, emotional musical journey that simply wouldn't have been possible in the form of a three-minute pop song.

The title track is clearly going to get the most attention here, though "Shine" may actually hew closer to what is generally expected of prog - it has a more complex arrangement and is closer to, well, rock music. Along with the title track, it is a highlight of the album. The remaining songs are very good pop compositions, though. For me, the standouts among these are "Flesh", which details Rundgren's thoughts on human institutions such as the law, "Compassion", about exactly what its title specifies, and the final two tracks, "Time Heals" and "Tiny Demons".

Rundgren placed these last two songs on a separate 7" single with the vinyl edition of the album, despite the fact that the single combined with the album's B-side (total length 26:40) is actually shorter than the album's A-side (27:08). While this could have been done for reasons of audio fidelity, Rundgren has never been one to shy away from lengthy album sides (the A-side and B-side of Initiation, infamously, run for 32:08 and 35:20 respectively, making it one of the longest single LPs ever released), so it was more likely done to emphasise that they are intended to be considered separately from the title track. They do feel somewhat different in tone from the rest of the album, but I almost always play them after the B-side regardless. "Time Heals" is probably the catchiest song on the entire album, and "Tiny Demons" is a beautiful, subdued ballad that was used on Miami Vice, a TV series often noted for making superb music choices.

Overall, not everyone will love this album, and it demands a lot of patience from the listener before it begins to deliver its gifts. However, it's one of my favourite works Rundgren has released, and I find it comforting in a way that few other musical works can manage. I'm going to give it four stars for my review here because not everything here can be properly considered to be progressive rock, but if I were rating purely on the basis of music quality, I'd award it five stars without hesitation.

 The Ever Popular Tortured Artist Effect by RUNDGREN, TODD album cover Studio Album, 1983
2.06 | 34 ratings

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The Ever Popular Tortured Artist Effect
Todd Rundgren Crossover Prog

Review by Walkscore

2 stars Bang on a Drum while you listen to this.

Made solely to complete a record contract he had with Bearsville (which later went bankrupt), this album sees Todd toss off the throwaway pop tunes as quickly as he could. It is mostly uninspired. Perhaps it was when he was feeling the pressure himself that he came up with the anthem-like chant here, "Bang the Drum All Day". Very likely a joke song for him, it is the one track on this album really worth hearing. The song "Drive" is OK too, although not a sufficient draw to make this album worth purchasing. On the whole the songs are not too too bad, but they are not sufficiently interesting or memorable. Mostly just blah. I give this album 3.1 out of 10 on my 10-point scale, which translates to low 2 PA stars. But that one hit makes me want to go play the drums all day...

 Hermit of Mink Hollow by RUNDGREN, TODD album cover Studio Album, 1978
3.10 | 41 ratings

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Hermit of Mink Hollow
Todd Rundgren Crossover Prog

Review by Walkscore

3 stars The Best post-Wizard Solo Studio Album.

Here, Rundgren continues with the kind of short, thoughtful, and well-crafted songs that he put on side 2 of Faithful, but writes generally stronger material. Indeed, this album contains some of Rundgren's better lyrics. It is intelligent and accessible, but not overly-poppy. This is often considered his best solo album by mainstream critics, but of course, they are less likely to be able to sit through Wizard. I agree that this is one of his best solo albums, more consistent than either Faithful, Something/Anything, or (especially) Todd, and better than most of his solo work that would come afterwards. But it is also clear that his energy for creating innovative new forms of music - so evident on Wizard and TR's Utopia - had waned. This is not in the same league at all as Wizard. But I like it better than Something/Anything. Thankfully, all the songs are decent, and one can listen to this album all the way through without having to hit skip. The songs on Side 2 are particularly good ("Bread", "Bag Lady", "Lucky Guy") and on this album Rundgren lyrics contain social commentary and a more mature adult outlook. So, recommended. I give this album 7.7 out of 10 on my 10-point scale, which translates to high 3 PA stars.

 Faithful by RUNDGREN, TODD album cover Studio Album, 1976
2.90 | 43 ratings

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Faithful
Todd Rundgren Crossover Prog

Review by Walkscore

2 stars Side 2 OK, but a pointless 'concept' Side 1.

The title of this album refers to the fact that Rundgren chose to record cover versions of some of his favourite rock songs, and to be as faithful to the originals as possible. This he does no side 1, with cover versions of the Beach Boys ("Good Vibrations"), the Beatles ("Rain", "Strawberry Fields"), Bob Dylan ("Most Likely Go Your Way...") and Hendrix ("If 6 Was 9") among others. While Rundgren shows he can do an amazing job of copying some of the vintage sounds, what is the point? Why would we want to listen to these versions? Don't get me wrong - I support artists making cover versions of classic songs - but I am most interested in hearing where they take the song that is different from the originals, turning into something new and different. That is the art in covering and interpreting other's music. I don't know why he thought we would want to listen to him being faithful to the originals.

However, side 2 is different, with 6 original Rundgren songs. One of these, "Love of the Common Man" is a Rundgren classic, and up there with the best Rundgren songs. "Black and White" and "The Verb to Love" are also decent, although pretty poppy and not that progressive. The last piece, "Boogies", has some good guitar playing, but sounds like filler. (But isn't all of side 1 filler?). I am not sure why Rundgren didn't just record a full album of originals. As it turns out, there are only a few original songs making one want to get this album. The general quality is not low, per se, but most of it is simply pointless. I give this album 4.9 out of 10 on my 10-point scale, which translates to 2 PA stars. Really, only for fans (and even then, mostly for the excellent "Love of the Common Man").

 Initiation by RUNDGREN, TODD album cover Studio Album, 1975
3.84 | 73 ratings

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Initiation
Todd Rundgren Crossover Prog

Review by Walkscore

3 stars Some Gems, but what happened to that epic?

This album is quite different on each side. On side 1 you have individual songs, some of which are excellent Rundgren radio-friendly songs ("Real Man") and some which are excellent Utopia-like progressive rock pieces ("Initiation" and "Fair Warning"). Even "Born to Synthesize", his synth experiment on this album, is decent and listenable. The second side seems to me to be a case of Rundgren losing steam. It is a 36-minute long song, but not one like The Ikon (from TR's Utopia) with a full band and guitar solos, etc, but instead just Todd on synthesizers and no vocals. It seems to me from listening to this, that Rundgren had intended to write another 30-minute progressive rock epic, like The Ikon, and this track is his sketching out of the piece in the studio. But somewhere along the way, he lost energy and/or interest in turning this into a progressive rock epic, and so just released the sketch he did largely with just the synths, and without writing the vocals. As such, it feels unfinished. There are some decent parts - it really could have been a great composition! But it is also clear it was intended to have vocals - there are sections where the chord changes are begging for a vocal overlay, which never came. After this album, Rundgren went back to writing only short songs. I think it was during this album that he found he just didn't have the energy needed to create another epic - it is the point at which you can see the huge potential Rundgren displayed in writing 'Todd Rundgren's Utopia' (the first Utopia album) and the great 'A Wizard A True Star' dissipate. From this point on, Rundgren would become a craftman of quality rock/pop. This album still has hints of Rundgren's innovative and progressive potential, but it is a potential that remained largely unrealized (except for the three great songs on side one). I give this 5.9 out of 10 on my 10-point scale, which translates to low 3 PA stars.

 Todd by RUNDGREN, TODD album cover Studio Album, 1974
3.99 | 77 ratings

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Todd
Todd Rundgren Crossover Prog

Review by Walkscore

2 stars A Failed Experiment. Should also have been a single album.

While Wizard saw Rundgren takes risks that paid off hugely, Todd largely falls flat. It is full of short synth instrumentals and experiments that only sometimes work, and which disrupt the flow of the real music so much that it is very difficult to listen to this album all the way through. There are some gems here, but they are a minority, and are scattered in such a way that one needs to hit skip all the time. "A Dream Goes on Forever" is classic Rundgren, and was the single from this album, very nice (if poppy) song. "Heavy Metal Kids" and "Sons of 1984" are important Rundgren songs that were played live by his band (both solo bands and later Utopia), although I don't think either is that musical. However, there is one amazing 10/10 song here: "The Last Ride". This is a fantastic rock tune, not really progressive but it has a great, classic, guitar solo, among Rundgren's top five songs. Other than this, the picking are rather slim. I give this album 3.6 out of 10 on my 10-point scale, which translates to lower 2 PA stars. Other than "The Last Ride", only for fans.

Thanks to Fandango for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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