He played five songs as tune-up to the introduction to his new music (and finished with 2 known tracks as his encore). Two of the songs easily could have been within the Rolling Stone Magazine’s latest “top 100” guitar jams (Black Maria & Open My Eyes). A nice version of “Lunatic Fringe” was played, although I would prefer to hear one of his many other tunes that speak to the lunatic fringe than what Red Ryder wrote.
But this show was about moving forward. Rundgren proved once again that nothing is static by challenging the sold out HOB to embrace the future. He played the entire “Arena” disk. I don’t know any of the titles from this effort (yet). The songs were tight; they highlighted his guitar skills, utilized traditional Utopian like background vocals, and engaged the crowd with energy and passion for the new material.
Clevelanders responded to the new music with howls and shrieks that were usually reserved only for more familiar tunes.
Once again – Rundgren comes through with material that is relevant and infectious. I can’t wait for his follow-up visit.