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PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2011 5:52 pm 
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The Forum Killed Arkay wrote:
Plook wrote:
...That song is from "Hermit of Mink Hollow" which he wrote, produced, sang all parts, and played all instruments, the song “Love is the Answer” is from that album ...

Love is the Answer isn't on Hermit, it was first released on Oops! Wrong Planet.



You are right I was to tired last night to attempt writting anything over one sentance long, my apologize... :smoke:


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2011 6:01 pm 
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PenguinInBondage wrote:
Thanks again Plook - as you are the one responsible for me diving into Todd's career and digesting the material! :mrgreen:

I'd definitely say: "A Wizard, A True Star" needs to be added to that list. It's a great album that almost "has" to be played from start to finish as a whole. I'd also add "Todd" because there are an awful lot of good ones on there too.

I tried a 1st listen to "Hermit of Mink Hollow" yesterday and none of the material really pulled me in like the others. But then again, some albums certainly take more than one listen!



You know there is something about that album (Hermit of Mink Hollow) being a one man show that has a sound to it that just is not quite right, I can not put my finger on it, you probably know better than I the production genius that you are. Wizard is a great album and some of it makes up a good portion of "Back to the Bars' and I like the live versions better, same with "Initiation" so much better live to me, but that may just be my taste...

:smoke:
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2011 10:42 pm 
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Don't forget Nearly Human & 2nd Wind. They're essential TR listening and compliment each other very well. I think Todd is at his best lyrically here. He has a very good sense of what relationships are, warts 'n all and really digs deep to convey the complexities of them to the listener, like almost no other artist can.

And if you get a chance, check out the Liars Live DVD - the stage presentation and visuals are very cool and Kasim even throws a few short early Utopia riffs into one or two of the songs for shits and giggles...

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2011 4:43 am 
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Plook wrote:
You know there is something about that album (Hermit of Mink Hollow) being a one man show that has a sound to it that just is not quite right, I can not put my finger on it


Hmmm.... shades of Zoot Allures? :wink:

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2011 8:04 am 
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You know, is it just me or does Todd's "forced" vocal stretches on Back to the Bars bother any of the rest of you? A lot of the tracks on here, I feel that he tries to hit some of his notes and "peters out". Not being too familiar with his live vox, I'll have to hear some of his other live moments and see if it was just an anomaly on this tour or if it's how his vocals typically cut across live and I just need to learn to "deal with it".... Just something that makes me cringe every once in a while when giving this live album another shot....

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2011 9:40 am 
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PenguinInBondage wrote:
You know, is it just me or does Todd's "forced" vocal stretches on Back to the Bars bother any of the rest of you? A lot of the tracks on here, I feel that he tries to hit some of his notes and "peters out". Not being too familiar with his live vox, I'll have to hear some of his other live moments and see if it was just an anomaly on this tour or if it's how his vocals typically cut across live and I just need to learn to "deal with it".... Just something that makes me cringe every once in a while when giving this live album another shot....

Yeah, that has some vocal problems. If you listen to the complete recordings of that you'd get yer confirmation. I remember an interview with TR from the early 90's that he felt that the Nearly Human tours changed him vocally. He felt that even though he'd been singing for years, he had finally learned how to do it in a way that satisfied him.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2011 9:44 am 
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Disco Boy wrote:
Don't forget Nearly Human & 2nd Wind. They're essential TR listening and compliment each other very well. I think Todd is at his best lyrically here. He has a very good sense of what relationships are, warts 'n all and really digs deep to convey the complexities of them to the listener, like almost no other artist can.

And if you get a chance, check out the Liars Live DVD - the stage presentation and visuals are very cool and Kasim even throws a few short early Utopia riffs into one or two of the songs for shits and giggles...

Nearly Human was one that took me a few listens but I love it. Whenever someone talks about knowing instantly whether they love or hate an album that is one I think of as an exception to the rule.
I love the Liars Live DVD! I remember the tour too, great superbright stage setup and costumes and the sound has alot of meat to it.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2011 9:46 am 
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The Forum Killed Arkay wrote:
PenguinInBondage wrote:
You know, is it just me or does Todd's "forced" vocal stretches on Back to the Bars bother any of the rest of you? A lot of the tracks on here, I feel that he tries to hit some of his notes and "peters out". Not being too familiar with his live vox, I'll have to hear some of his other live moments and see if it was just an anomaly on this tour or if it's how his vocals typically cut across live and I just need to learn to "deal with it".... Just something that makes me cringe every once in a while when giving this live album another shot....

Yeah, that has some vocal problems. If you listen to the complete recordings of that you'd get yer confirmation. I remember an interview with TR from the early 90's that he felt that the Nearly Human tours changed him vocally. He felt that even though he'd been singing for years, he had finally learned how to do it in a way that satisfied him.


Thanks for the insight, Arkay! As a singer, I can get hyper-critical in that category for sure but it's very comforting to know TR felt the same way about his live vox and also to know that I can find later shows where he executes some of this stuff better vocally. Again, I can get past it but, for me, it's an element that stands out for me at quite a few moments throughout the live compilation.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2011 4:53 pm 
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PenguinInBondage wrote:
The Forum Killed Arkay wrote:
PenguinInBondage wrote:
You know, is it just me or does Todd's "forced" vocal stretches on Back to the Bars bother any of the rest of you? A lot of the tracks on here, I feel that he tries to hit some of his notes and "peters out". Not being too familiar with his live vox, I'll have to hear some of his other live moments and see if it was just an anomaly on this tour or if it's how his vocals typically cut across live and I just need to learn to "deal with it".... Just something that makes me cringe every once in a while when giving this live album another shot....

Yeah, that has some vocal problems. If you listen to the complete recordings of that you'd get yer confirmation. I remember an interview with TR from the early 90's that he felt that the Nearly Human tours changed him vocally. He felt that even though he'd been singing for years, he had finally learned how to do it in a way that satisfied him.


Thanks for the insight, Arkay! As a singer, I can get hyper-critical in that category for sure but it's very comforting to know TR felt the same way about his live vox and also to know that I can find later shows where he executes some of this stuff better vocally. Again, I can get past it but, for me, it's an element that stands out for me at quite a few moments throughout the live compilation.



I agree he really reaches on some of the BTTB vocals, but consider this, he has during a performance what I call Chris Collingsworth syndrome. Have you every watched a Sunday Night football game and as the game goes on Cris Collinsworth goes to shit and it is scratchy and breaking and generally all over the place...that is what I saw in almost every TR and/or Utopia concert in the 70's and 80's. One other factor, BTTB was recorded in 1978 and the cocaine was flowing and the Roxy (where most of it is recorded) was a smoked filled bar, I remember him mentioning what’s up with all the smoking (I was still a non smoker then...I did not start smoking until I was 22).

:smoke:


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2011 9:14 pm 
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Not sure if I follow the Chris Collinsworth anology but I'll think about it Sunday night (the football analyst that really bugs me is Chris Berman with his lurching vocal delivery - it really sounds like he has a serious problem with his throat). As multi-talented as Todd is I think I'd have to say that his vocals aren't his strongest suit though I like them because I'm a TR fan. My first Todd/Utopia album was "Oops! Wrong Planet" and is still probably my all-time favorite. My favorite albums of Todd's tend to be the Utopia albums when they pared it down to a four piece. Besides Oops! I really dig "Swing to the Right", "Utopia", "Oblivion", and "POV" and "Trivia". I also dug the earlier "Another Live". Todd solo favorites are "Something/Anything", "AWATS" and the recent "Liars" and "Arena". Being a big Tubes fan I also dig the Todd produced "Remote Control" album and the very overlooked and experimental Tubes swan song "Love Bomb".


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 17, 2011 7:25 am 
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KillUgly2 wrote:
Not sure if I follow the Chris Collinsworth anology but I'll think about it Sunday night (the football analyst that really bugs me is Chris Berman with his lurching vocal delivery - it really sounds like he has a serious problem with his throat). As multi-talented as Todd is I think I'd have to say that his vocals aren't his strongest suit though I like them because I'm a TR fan. My first Todd/Utopia album was "Oops! Wrong Planet" and is still probably my all-time favorite. My favorite albums of Todd's tend to be the Utopia albums when they pared it down to a four piece. Besides Oops! I really dig "Swing to the Right", "Utopia", "Oblivion", and "POV" and "Trivia". I also dug the earlier "Another Live". Todd solo favorites are "Something/Anything", "AWATS" and the recent "Liars" and "Arena". Being a big Tubes fan I also dig the Todd produced "Remote Control" album and the very overlooked and experimental Tubes swan song "Love Bomb".



Cris looses his voice to a certain degree in every game, similarly TR does in concert also.

Oops is also one of my all time favorites and "Swing to the Right" has some really good songs on it also, the title track be a vocal extravaganza of the tightness of those four singing together. This is one of the unheralded secrets of that band, awesome harmonies.

Another live may be worth buying just to get the song "The Wheel", one of his strongest written lyrics in my opinion. I really faded away from Todd on most of his later albums until "Liars" which I find to be a masterpiece, where he seems to simulate other bands he has worked with on certain songs, "Stood Up" sounds like an XTC song, "Past" is definitely an ode to Hall and Oats and their tragic loss of collaborator Janna Allen (Sarah Smile), and others.

It is a shame that I did not discover the “Liars” album until after the concert tour and The Forum Killed Arkay keeps mentioning a live DVD that is now on my must have list.
:smoke:


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 17, 2011 11:19 am 
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Plook wrote:
It is a shame that I did not discover the “Liars” album until after the concert tour and The Forum Killed Arkay keeps mentioning a live DVD that is now on my must have list.
:smoke:


Yup, I just added it to my Xmas wish list! :mrgreen:
(Used though, they wanted to much for it new on Amazon)

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2011 6:34 am 
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Todd's 1st solo album. Not a high-gloss production, very much an early 70s sound. I give it mixed reviews. The radio hit from this album "We Gotta Get You a Woman" is ok, but so corny it can make me cringe. TR is way into Laura Nyro at this time and the lyrics of "Baby Lets Swing" directly address her. The TR exhibit at the R&R Hall of Fame showed some letters/poems they had sent to each other in the 70s. TR's infatuation with Nyro even contributed to him leaving the Nazz and of course this is the 1st TR album made after that.
There are several tunes on this album that I consider throwaways: There Are No Words, Who's That Man, and Once Burned. They're ok, but I don't find myself returning to them much. Devil's Bite and I'm in the Clique are Quirky TR and fun. But, my favs of the album are the Medley and Birthday Carol. Broke Down and Busted has had some live performances over the years, but this is another album that TR rarely returns to.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2011 9:09 am 
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I couldn't get into "Birthday Carol" :(
What's your take on the lyrical meaning behind that one?

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2011 9:27 am 
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I quite like that "Something/Anything" album. Todd plays all the instruments (it was surprising to find out he can even play some saxophone/flute) on 3/4ths of the album. The fourth side is accompanied by session musicians and it's got not only the big hit "Hello It's Me", but also some songs with rather salacious lyrics, "Piss Aaron" and "Slut" are almost like prime Flo and Eddie era stuff in their subject matter, but played with musicians as slick as on "Apostrophe".

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2011 10:23 am 
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PenguinInBondage wrote:
I couldn't get into "Birthday Carol" :(
What's your take on the lyrical meaning behind that one?

Awesome question. I wish I had a good answer. If I come up with one I'll let you know. I tend to think of it as TR's first effort at Long-Form. I'm sure you know that later on, he creates several lengthy tunes and as far as I know, this is the longest one to-date. One time I had a great conversation with sleeping in a jar about Yes lyrics. I went into it wanting to know everything about every lyric that I heard, I left the conversation thinking its ok to have songs where the meaning is variable. (But now I gotta know again... sleepy where are you)

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2011 11:12 am 
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The Forum Killed Arkay wrote:
Awesome question. I wish I had a good answer. If I come up with one I'll let you know. I tend to think of it as TR's first effort at Long-Form. I'm sure you know that later on, he creates several lengthy tunes and as far as I know, this is the longest one to-date. One time I had a great conversation with sleeping in a jar about Yes lyrics. I went into it wanting to know everything about every lyric that I heard, I left the conversation thinking its ok to have songs where the meaning is variable. (But now I gotta know again... sleepy where are you)


Sleeping, perhaps... :wink:
Absolutely though - sometimes it's best to leave the interpretation in the imagination of the imaginer! But that one in particular - since the lyrics are a bit less obtuse than your average Yes lyric, I wonder what he means by being born today along with his brother, yadda yadda yadda...

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2011 11:27 am 
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Yeah, I don't think he had an actual brother... so back to the imaginations for now anyway.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2011 11:39 am 
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The Forum Killed Arkay wrote:
Yeah, I don't think he had an actual brother... so back to the imaginations for now anyway.


Yeah, but... but.... but..... how could he be born this morning yet he learned to speak in just 9 months? O_o

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2011 11:45 am 
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PenguinInBondage wrote:
The Forum Killed Arkay wrote:
Yeah, I don't think he had an actual brother... so back to the imaginations for now anyway.


Yeah, but... but.... but..... how could he be born this morning yet he learned to speak in just 9 months? O_o

Well, he had been listening since early morn! hahahaha Damn time compression

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2011 1:08 pm 
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The Forum Killed Arkay wrote:
Yeah, I don't think he had an actual brother... so back to the imaginations for now anyway.



He I believe has a sister, I was working a AT&T job up in the remote foothills of Northern California and one of the Techs at site was I believe his sister or possibly a cousin. We chatted about TR for about 10 minutes and then went about our business, it has been many years now (possibly 10+) so I am not clear on the whole thing.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2011 1:15 pm 
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Plook wrote:
He I believe has a sister, I was working a AT&T job up in the remote foothills of Northern California and one of the Techs at site was I believe his sister or possibly a cousin. We chatted about TR for about 10 minutes and then went about our business, it has been many years now (possibly 10+) so I am not clear on the whole thing.

:smoke:


Hmmmm... maybe it was TODD himself then! :mrgreen:

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2011 1:23 pm 
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PenguinInBondage wrote:
Thanks again Plook - as you are the one responsible for me diving into Todd's career and digesting the material! :mrgreen:

I'd definitely say: "A Wizard, A True Star" needs to be added to that list. It's a great album that almost "has" to be played from start to finish as a whole. I'd also add "Todd" because there are an awful lot of good ones on there too.

I tried a 1st listen to "Hermit of Mink Hollow" yesterday and none of the material really pulled me in like the others. But then again, some albums certainly take more than one listen!


A Wizard A True Star is an amazing piece. I agree with Plook about Faithful. I also think Runt is fine and shows some growth from his days with the Nazz.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2011 1:29 pm 
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Yup, AWATS is still standing out for me as his best solo album. The first Utopia album (Todd Rundgren's Utopia) is still standing out for me as their best. I'm still digesting though (quite a bit in both catalogs!)

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2011 1:38 pm 
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And yes it is commercial, but Something/Anything has some really pretty songs on it (It Wouldn't Have Made Any Difference) comes readily to mind.

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