on 20 November 2013
The music, particularly on "Todd Rundgren's Utopia", is outstanding. Somehow this band manages to maintain sufficient discipline to make blistering music without disappearing too far into the ether. However, a previous CD release of this album (the Rhino edition) had a mastering fault during "The Ikon" (around 16:15) where the music leaps in volume in the right channel for a few seconds and drops back down again. Someone obviously upped the volume to check something while they were editing the recording and failed to drop it back down again. This Edsel edition retains that fault and it is such a stupid, irritating flaw to my ears that I cannot tolerate this CD in my house.
Was it an original production idea? No - I've listened back to my vinyl copy and there is no volume leap there. Is there a CD version without this flaw? I don't know - I haven't heard them all. I can only imagine that Todd Rundgren has no control over these products and his music is at the mercy of inept mastering rooms and idiot engineers.
As you can see, I'm fuming.
If you can listen to this music and accept the mastering flaw as an interesting "feature" then you will hear the kind of music that musicians in the 70s aspired to, with an element of spirituality, a proportion of free playing and some wonderful melodies. Todd is one of the great songwriters of the 70s and an incendiary guitarist to boot.
So, Five Stars for the music minus four for whoever messed up the master.
on 6 April 2013
I bought both of these as vinyl on release (they are probably still cluttering my mums attic as I write)
Until this purchase I doubt I had listened to either album in over a quarter of a century and I was a bit dubious but, I needn't have worried, they still sound fabulous. I don't remember particularly liking side 2 of Utopia at the time but now it really does seem to buzz with ideas.
If you're a Todd fan you'll already know that these (particularly Utopia) were a challenging departure from their immediate predecessors and - if you're relatively new to Todd - don't go expecting Something/Anything? style ballads and power pop 'cos it ain't here! But these incarnations of Utopia also revisited the earlier material, live, and anyone who saw them at Hammersmith in November '75 will testify that this was a great, great Todd band: "Another Live" bears this out
Unfortunately after the next couple of studio albums (Initiation and Faithful) which are both worth a gander the Utopia experiment went totally, in MHO, prog-untastic ("Singring and the Glass Guitar", anyone?). Skip them and re-board the train at Hermit.
Sorry wittered on there. This release is well worth buying if you have any interest at all in one of rock's great genii!
on 1 December 2012
Just a great live album, listened to endlessly while revising 40ish years ago. Never tired of the music esp Another,rate alongside Who Live at Leeds. But remember this is American rock and the culture was very different to the Brits in the 70's so open mind please. Recommended
on 2 June 2013
Todd cranks the guitar up on Utopia, and this is the first Todd Rundgren's Utopia album, played it to death on vinyl, so when these to releases came out together i had to get them. Another Live is not as heavy, but has some great tunes throughout.