Todd Rundgren's Utopia

Review by Patrick J. Bultemeier (Switch to

Of all the Todd/Utopia shows that have taken place, this is the one I wish I could have been front and center. I don't need two weeks to check out this disc......... because it's one of the ones that rarely gets far from the CD player at my house.

From the get-go...this disc takes off. Hearing the "Utopia Theme" always gets me going. To me, it's Todd's "Feed Your Head" song. Feed it with thought, feed it with knowledge, feed it with Love and last but not least, feed it with mind altering substances. (you knew I'D say that huh?)

These are "cosmic jams" at their finest. Music that's meant to take you somewhere else. I saw my first show around this era..... but was so dosed that i have no idea WHAT they played. All I remember is the synth's and guitar bouncing around inside my head. It really did change my life.

I thought I'd relate a story that concerns the song "Freak Parade".

My brother was an Art major in college.('77) He was getting into film production etc. and decided to enter a yearly contest at the University which recognized talent in the area of cinematography.

About this same time.... he was experiencing some personal transformations...... ala Vegetarian diet etc. We were also doing quite a bit of micro-dot etc. and washing it down with serious quantities of Busch beer.

All of this activity combined with this song to come up with a "concept" film called "The Life and Times of Captain Sim". Sim was my brother's nickname in our "mock fraternity" which was called "Phi Omega Tau". (POT) Our "smokers" or "rush" parties were a haze.... and we regularly had "pound parties" couldn't leave till it was GONE. (another story in itself)

The film is the story about Sim's struggle with alien beings who come down to the campus and shoot him with a "transducer" ray which turns him into a "vegatable".(vegetarian) These beings are actually a giant carrot, a giant mushroom and another veggie that escapes me at the moment. We got some seriously strange looks(or was it the 'cid?) while we were filming it.

We had a great time doing it and it WON the Universities award for cinematography. I am trying to obtain this film from my now "Extremely Right-Wing" brother. He doesn't want to remember those days cus' he wants to be a politician and this wouldn't shed a good light on his campaign. I will get it though......... and when I do I'm gonna have it transferred over from Super 8 to VHS.

It is perfectly timed with the song "Freak Parade". You just wouldn't believe it. Considering it's Super 8....he did an excellent job of editing and combining the soundtrack.

Anyone else "inspired" by this or other TR recordings?

"I've got to take my place.."

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