Great Rock Albums of 1980: Utopia- Adventures in Utopia

Adventures_In_Utopia

Staying on the subject of rock/metal acts who were considered great in their own country but never made headway into others, Todd Rundgren’s band Utopia comes to mind. I can’t think of anyone I know in Great Britain who has heard of them, however, when I have played this album to some of my British friends, they liked it. It is funny how at times music, no matter how good it is, never makes it across the Atlantic.

I read a review of a Utopia album sometime in the future. The critic stated that the rest of the band aren’t up to the talents of Todd Rundgren and as a result pull him down. My only speculation here is that the critic never heard this album. True, Todd Rundgren is nothing short of a musical genius and it is frustratingly shameful that he hasn’t been inducted into the Rock Hall of Fame, but the other members of Utopia are all good song writers, musicians and especially in the case of bassist Kasmir Sulton, good vocalist.

First, the album begins with the very strong track “Road to Utopia” where the space age intro grabs your attention straight away. Straight away, the talents of all four members are highlighted and it in no way downgrades over the rest of the album. I also love the element of humour in songs like “You Make Me Crazy” and Sulton’s vocals show their full potential on the track, “Set Me Free.” After the lengthy but not boring “Caravan” is a total bang your head rock out, “Last of the New Wave Riders.” Then there’s the “The Very Last Time,” which has some personal meaning for me and the slow love song “Love and Love Alone” that again showcases Kasmir’s vocals. Finally, the song goes out not just on a high, I’m talking cloud ten with “Rock Love.” A great closer to an album and an excellent song in it’s own right.

Track Listing:

1. Road to Utopia

2. You Make Me Crazy

3. Second Nature

4. Set Me Free

5. Caravan

6. Last of the New Wave Riders

7. Shot in The Dark

8. The Very Last Time

9. Love and Love Alone

10. Rock Love

Utopia

Utopia

Todd Rundgren- vocals, guitars

Kasmir Sulton- bass, vocals

Roger Powell- keyboards, synthesisers, backing vocals

John “Willie” Wilcox- drums, backing vocals

Anyone who agrees with the critic who said that Utopia diminish the talents of Todd Rundgren, should definitely go and listen to this album. In no way does “Adventures in Utopia” do that, in fact, it serves to showcase the talents of the other members. This is in my opinion, their best album.

Next post: Pat Benatar- Crimes of Passion

To buy Rock and Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop

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6 Responses to “Great Rock Albums of 1980: Utopia- Adventures in Utopia”

  1. I always think of Rundgren more as a producer than anything else. Where to start with Utopia? this one?

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    • For his band Utopia, this is definitely the album to go to. However, if you want to hear some of Todd Rundgren’s solo efforts, then I certainly would recommend the albums “Something/Anything” and “Hermit of Mink Hollow.”

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  2. One of Todd’s best Albums

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