Review for the 2cd Utopia- Oops! Wrong planet tour (Todd Archive series vol 5)

Review by René Bosman (Switch to

Volume 5 in Nippon Crown's Todd Archive series forms a radio registration of a Utopia concert recorded in Chicago on October 20, 1977. The "Oops! Wrong planet" album was out just then and the band ready for their next tour.

Watching the tracklist it appears Utopia preferred to play more recent songs instead of the old standards, which makes the concert an interesting audio event, although the sound quality is rather poor.

The opening tune is a Utopian interpretation of Gustav Holst's classic(al) masterpiece "The planets" and not, as Tony Rogers remarks in his list of boots, of Ravel's "Bolero". The intro slips over into "Trapped", the first of many Oops!-songs to follow. Mentioningworth especially are "The marriage of heaven and hell" -a song rarely played in later tours- and a unique take of "My angel", for it is one of the spare moments in Todd's musical career he's caught playing the saxophone live.

Other highlights are strong versions of "Communion with the sun", "The seven rays", "Back on the street", "Love is the answer" and of course the opus grand "Singring and the glass guitar", lasting up to 35 minutes and definitely lifting the concert up to it's peak. Pleasant surprise in this one is the suddenly popping up of a "Treatise on cosmic fire" theme in Todd's solo guitar part.

Having listened to the entire concert, it appears this 2cd-set offers enough musical enjoyment to make one forget about the bad sound quality.

René Bosman, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

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