Review for Todd Rundgren A cappella tour- Todd Archive series vol. 7

Review by René Bosman (Switch to

This double live cd was recorded in Dallas, Texas on October 31 1985, presenting Todd Rundgren in his (almost) bare essence as a solo singer-songwriter. The opportunity to experience Rundgen this way was offered during the A cappella tour in 1985, but for unclear reasons it took a long time for record companies to release any live material. I wonder why, 'cause there are reasons enough for every fan to consider this record to be a must have.

Firstly, the set offers a broad and interesting selection of songs, ranging from 1972 (Something/Anything) to 1985 (A cappella), some of them not having appeared on any other live album before, like Tiny demons, Too far gone and Song of the Viking.

Further, the variation in the way the tunes are presented is very nice. As expected lots of songs from the A cappella album are performed, Rundgren being accompanied here by an eleven-voice orchestra (including Kasim Sulton). But there's more. In the opening tune Born to synthesize we can hear Rundgren singing alone, on others he accompanies himself just on acoustic or electric guitar or on piano, and like in the good old days there are some in which he's backed up by the original studio tapes, e.g. Lord Chancellor's nightmare song and Bang on the drum all day. With all the songs mixed this concert never gets boring where other a cappella concerts do.

Of course like with almost every a cappella concert slight imperfections can be heard. But they're are hardly disturbing here. Instead most of the songs turn out to be succesful, sometimes even compelling admiration: songs like Real man and Can we still be friends for example are really beautiful in their versions displayed.

Finally in my opinion the recording quality is quite reasonable, with a fine mix and (except for the first two or three songs) a clear sound. Reasons enough therefore to add this record to your collection.

René Bosman, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

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