The one where we ditch the ho ho ho's and instead talk about: Kiss, Pet Shop Boys, Fishbone, NIN, Spirit and David Bowie (and not a little drummer boy in sight).
Tuesday, December 15, 2015
Monday, December 07, 2015
Monday, November 23, 2015
"One of my favourite songs of all time is a song called International Feel by Todd Rundgren and that's on his album A Wizard, A True Star. It's a pretty short song but just in terms of the song itself and the production. I've talked about it with the guys from Tame Impala because they're all big Todd Rundgren fans too and if there's anything that's a template for what I've set out to achieve it probably would start with that song."
Monday, November 16, 2015
Monday, October 19, 2015
Monday, October 12, 2015
Saturday, October 10, 2015
It's autumn or fall but the music is still coming. This month we cast our ears over
The Libertines - Anthems for a Doomed Youth
Craig Finn - Faith in the Future
David Gilmour - Rattle that Lock
Keith Richards - Crosseyed Heart
Dam Funk - Invite the Light
Duran Duran - Paper Gods
Thursday, October 08, 2015
Monday, September 07, 2015
Feels like the end of summer doesn't it
Frank Turner - Positive Songs for Negative People
Foals - What Went Down
Public Enemy - Man Plans God Laughs
Ghostfaced Killah - Adrian Younge presents 12 Reasons to Die II
Chelsea Wolfe - Abyss
Wilco - StarWars
Friday, August 21, 2015
Monday, August 10, 2015
Seether is neither black nor white ...
Yes, another helping of mimbling and rambling from your friends at CTTB
Veruca Salt - Ghost Notes
Jason Isbell - Somethinh More than Free
Joy Williams - Venus
Ashley Monroe -The Blade
Tame Impala - Currents
The Chemical Brothers - Born into the Echoes
Monday, July 06, 2015
In the words of the great Billy Idol, it was hot in the city, hot in the city tonight for this recording. Studio fans set to hurricain.
Kacey Musgaves - Pagaent Material
Faith No MOre - Sol Invictus
Giorgio Moroder - Deja Vu
Kendrick Lamar - To Pimp a Butterfly
Florence & The Machine - How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful
Summer Camp - Bad Love
Thursday, July 02, 2015
Monday, June 08, 2015
Wednesday, June 03, 2015
Something / Anything Skrillex (and the longevity of atmospheric music) I agree with too.
Friday, May 22, 2015
We've come over all electronica this month. Whether or not that is a good thing or not, you'll need to listen and find out. Also do we REALLY need a new Blur album?
Blur – The Magic Whip
MG – MG
Rundgren /Nikolaisen/ Lindstrøm - Runddans
Blanck Mass - Dumb Flesh
Speedy Ortiz - Foil Deer
Hot Chip - Why Make Sense?
Friday, May 15, 2015
Tuesday, May 12, 2015
Runddans means "rondel" in Danish, "circular object," and the title of one track is "Rundt Rundt Rundt" – around, around, around. Rundgren: "That's the central theme. The chords keep repeating, and it's hard to tell where the beginning of the sequence is. It's like an aural illusion where the sound sounds like its continually ascending when it's really repeating a cycle of harmonics. It's like you're tuning in a cosmic radio that keeps playing the same song over and over again – but it comes out different every time. It's like Groundhog Day. We refer to it as "the beginning and end of all music."
Meanwhile, Angus Findlayson at Resident Advisor is not totally convinced: "Runddans is an intriguing and sometimes fun experiment, but it's not quite a meeting of great musical minds. A pessimist might say that they've missed one another by a few decades."
Guy Oddy at the Arts Desk is even less impressed saying whilst it's "commendable that Rundgren refuses to let the grass grow under his feet by trying new angles with each new album, it’s a shame that Runddans is all head and not enough heart – and feels like the work of a millionaire hippy for whom making music has become a hobby."
Thursday, May 07, 2015
Tuesday, May 05, 2015
Friday, May 01, 2015
Thursday, April 30, 2015
PING! Yes, a new podcast and some Todd to talk about. But there is more with 3rd album's galore.
The Prodigy - The Day is My Enemy
Todd Rundgren - Global
Halestorm - Into the Wild
Laura Marling - Short Movie
Marina & The Diamonds - Froot
Waxahatchee - Ivy Tripp
Wednesday, April 29, 2015
Tuesday, April 28, 2015
Monday, April 27, 2015
Mojo Magazine too are not feeling the love, stating it lacks" the quality of songwriting in his best best work from the '70s"
Tuesday, April 21, 2015
The new album: With "Global," there's a song called "Flesh and Blood," and that's about the phenomenon if you create the right sort atmosphere and the right music and the right place you can turn tens of thousands of people into a single organism. And that's kind of what you need to accomplish the stuff that we need to accomplish. We need to be able to unify people in that way, and music is one of those things that in some way short circuits people's brains (laughs) and makes them stop thinking about other things and focus on the thing that you're dealing with right now.
The Beatles ( and Deface the Music): The reason why we did that record wasn't really because we had some long standing desire to make a Beatles-style record; we were kind of contrarians. The Knack was really hot at the time with "My Sharona." They dressed like the Beatles and were doing that whole '60s English Invasion thing, so we recorded a power pop song called "I Just Want to Touch You" for laughs and submitted it for the movie soundtrack for a film called "Roadie." I had produced two songs for Alice Cooper for that album and they said to us, "Why don't you put a Utopia song on the soundtrack?" We weren't using Alice's band, so Utopia played on the records and actually appeared in the movie, except for me (laughs). So we gave them that song and they came back and gave us the excuse that it sounds too much like The Beatles. They were afraid The Beatles might take some issues with it and sue them.
Goldmine also spoke to Record Store Day organizer Michael Kurtz and Todd got a mention when he was asked: What are some exciting releases for Record Store Day in the classic rock genre?
MK: I'm a huge Todd Rundgren fan, and there is a 7-inch coming out that is the first official full single/segment to be heard from "Runddans," the single track /continuous album by Todd Rundgren, Lindstrom and Emil Nikolaisen from Serena-Maneesh. The B-side will be an a cappella version of parts of the album put together by Lindstrom.
Monday, April 20, 2015
Personally the thing that always struck me about the song was how blatant a rip off Deep Purple's Black Night was
Sunday, April 19, 2015
"[H]e concentrated on his 25th solo album, “Global,” and performed against a backdrop of throbbing synthesizers and programmed drums. It could easily have been a mess. It was enthralling."
Friday, April 17, 2015
Flesh and Blood
Can We Still Be Friends / I Saw the Light / Hello It's Me
This Island Earth
Just One Victory
Thursday, April 16, 2015
Wednesday, April 15, 2015
Howard Whitman at Technology Tell gives the album a thumbs up. He gives us
Tuesday, April 14, 2015
Really good interview with Todd in Rock Cellar magazine, where he talks about the album and the current state of music. And Todd doesn't hold back in his dislike for some of pop music's current top artists:
"I can’t stand the modern generation of young pop artists pretty much. So your Taylor Swifts and your Katy Perrys, just “neener-neener-neener,” I’d stick my fingers into my ears...so many of these people have no talent. Or they just get produced up the freaking wazoo. And you don’t know whether they actually can do any of the things that they supposedly do."
He also talks about the lyrical inspirations of the album including global warming etc
"Probably the biggest bane to us dealing with these problems is the human potential for inertia. The fact that people just hate changing – which is the essence of conservatism. Conservatism means to resist change, to hold onto the past for as long as possible.Unfortunately, that past is gone. There is no past to hold onto any longer. At a certain point, even somebody like me, who is somewhat cynical and skeptical, even I will get fed up at some point."
Monday, April 13, 2015
The Park Record has an interview with Todd about the new album and production in general.
"It's the reason why I never developed a particular style as a producer. My reputation is that I could take a new artist who wasn't sure of what they wanted or an established artist who had hit a dead end and be able to get something different out of them."
There is a really good interview on Songfacts about the new album and some old stuff too, including this on my fav The Psychedelic Furs track:
Songfacts: Todd, "Love My Way." Whose idea was the marimbas?
Todd: They had a demo of the song, and I don't remember what the instrument was that they were using. It might've been just a guitar. But I happened to have the marimbas in the studio. I happened to have owned a set of marimbas. So I thought, Well, let's see what it sounds like with the marimbas. And it turned out that the little musical theme just sounded perfect with the marimbas, and became a signature element of the song. So it just was a question of availability. It's not like I had to go rent some marimbas. I happened to have them
Todd doing I Saw the Light, and Song of the Viking, at OpenAir during residency at CU Denver. Also an interview here
Todd also came up in an article about the neuroscience of songs triggering memories in The San Diego Union-Tribune (3 April)
"Apart from rollicking opener Evrybody, much of this doesn't bear comparison with his 70s pomp." - Scottish Express (10 Apr)
"Global sounds more like the work of a teenage bedroom DJ than a 66-year-old veteran with 25 albums under his belt, but this is a poor showcase for a man of his talent and originality." - The Times (10 Apr)
"Global" sounds sterile. Even the clever moments simply sound like Rundgren having a good old time with the Garage Band app. The exceptions are the beautiful ballad "Soothe," a yearning-infused piece with a killer melody and pathos-drenched lyrics; and the album-concluding one-two punch of "Skyscraper" (power-pop masquerading as EDM with soul overtones) and "This Island Earth," which would've been at home on Rundgren's far more successful electronic music collection "Liars." - Buffalo News (NY) 12th Apr
Tuesday, April 07, 2015
Monday, April 06, 2015
"EVEN a partial return to form by Rundgren, one of the finest singer/songwriters of the past 40 years, would have been a revelation. But Global, his 25th solo album, turns out to be a gem."
Wednesday, April 01, 2015
Tidal launched or (re)launched yesterday - here's my take on my other blog, and here's a reason why you might want to, at least, trial it for a month:
According to NME "there are playlists curated by Arcade Fire, Jay Z, Beyoncé and Coldplay, plus a preview of Todd Rundgren’s new collaboration with Lindstrøm and Emil Nikolaisen." maybe a reason to sign up for the free month and then cancel.
There is a press release too with more on the album
“It’s almost like a train ride, going through little towns, big cities and rural fields, giant thresholds over great valleys, through mountain tunnels and things like that. The only way I can characterize it is like this journey, and it’s of such a character that it doesn’t have the typical linearity to it.” - TR
In other news the latest issue of Q Magazine does NOT have a review of the new Todd album (unless it was well hidden) .
Tuesday, March 31, 2015
Meanwhile Todd tell's Billboard (who have a stream of the track Rise) where the album was coming from lyrically:-
"Most of my albums have been insular and about self-examination, and this is a little more about the collective and the issues that face everybody. I wanted to make a record that was sort of simultaneously like a cheerleading record but at the same time not letting anyone forget that we have issues that can only be addressed collectively."
Monday, March 30, 2015
Thursday, March 26, 2015
Allison Moorer - Down To Believing
The Unthanks - Mount the Air
"The keyboards and wild sax riffs add a collage-like quality that sometimes suggests a hip-hop version of Todd Rundgren's A Wizard, A True Star.... A genuine magnum opus."
Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Tuesday, March 24, 2015
Pop, Rock and Country all in the mix this month.
Susanne Sundfor - 10 Love Songs
Father John Misty - I love You, Honeybear
Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds - Chasing Yesterday
Charli XCX - Sucker
The Shires - Brave
Black Star Riders - The Killer Instinct
Of Global he says sees it "like an '80s record, at the point where new wave moves into synth pop, like Depeche Mode or something."
The review of the album gives it 6/10 saying 'he always wants to explore idiosyncratic digital terrains:admirable but ... not always convincing" Singles out Earth Mother, Soothe, Blind and Holyland as highlights.
Monday, March 16, 2015
“Global” is a strange, but vital, mix of party anthems, dance tracks and foreboding warnings. I believe this particular record has a very good chance of being one of Rundgren’s most successful in years because it is accessible while simultaneously retaining the quirky and brilliant individuality which is the modus operandi of all Todd Rundgren work."
Friday, March 13, 2015
Rolling Stone (Australia) has an interview with Tobias Jesso Jr. , a Canadian singer songwriter (who he counts Taylor Swift and Adele as fans) whose debut album, Goon, they claim is one of the most anticipated of the year. Clearly if I am mentioning this at all you know that he must mention Todd, and he does.
With its sunny melodies and heartsick subject matter, Goon earned comparisons to Harry Nilsson, Nick Drake, Randy Newman and Todd Rundgren – artists Jesso wasn't even familiar with. "I wasn't a big music-digger," he admits. "When it came to oldies stuff, I didn't know Todd Rundgren and Harry Nilsson and stuff like that, but when I was writing, J.R. [White] would say, 'I get this Todd Rundgren vibe.' He would send me those songs, and then I'd learn the chords." Still, Jesso says, he wants a contemporary record and plans to move away from the throwback.
Thursday, March 12, 2015
"Was Christina Aguilera paying tribute to or stealing from the Andrews Sisters with “Candyman”? Should the Beatles have sued the Knickerbockers for “Lies”? Or the Rutles, the Dukes of Stratosphere, and Todd Rundgren’s Utopia, all of whom recorded delectable Beatles soundalike albums, with varying degrees of straight faces?"
In case you missed it, Blurred Lines songwriters – Pharrell Wiliams, TI and Thicke – have already been ordered to pay Marvin Gaye’s family $7.3m in damages for the infringement. Now lawyers say they want to stop sales of the song altogether.
Now it seems the lawyers representing Gaye’s family, want to prevent further sales of the song until songwriting/future royalties sorted out. They told Rolling Stone: “We’ll be asking the court to enter an injunction prohibiting the further sale and distribution of Blurred Lines unless and until we can reach an agreement with those guys on the other side about how future monies that are received will be shared. We’ll be doing that in about a week or so.”
On the actual question of 'infringement' , I think there is certainly a similarity between Blurred Lines and Got to Give it Up, but one that owes more to the arrangement – in particular the percussion (at start of Gaye's song) than of the actual song - lyrically or underlying melody - itself. And even if it does, I'm still not sure this is a good decision.
Gaye has been dead 30 years. He's the person who created the 'original' (if such a thing exists) work. I've banged on about this before, but copyright is not supposed to be a pension fund or an inheritance fund. Gaye has not been 'harmed' by the existence of this track, indeed the very fact some people noticed some similarities would have – as it always the case now – drive people to check out, stream, buy his original track. Pharrell even admitted when the track came out that the vibe of the track had inspired Blurred Lines.
Let's no kid ourselves here. Had Blurred lines sold a few thousand copies instead of being one of the biggest selling tracks worldwide of the last few years, would the estate have done anything? I think we all know the answer to that one. This case is about greed, not protecting Gaye (whose own contribution to the writing of the original track has often been questioned).
Indeed it is ALWAYS about greed.
It's why I was also less than impressed with Tom 'yes I'm' Petty and Jeff Lynne in relation to the Sam Smith track 'Stay with Me' Yes, they sorted it out without recourse to the courts but, I'm a long time Petty fan, and until the story came out I have never once picked up the similarity between the two tracks, and I'd heard the Sam Smith song A LOT on UK radio. Compare that to 'Last Nite,' by the Strokes when you immediately go, Woah there, that's American Girl.
Then again, Tom was seemingly fine with The Strokes more blatant rip-off/homage back then: " I saw an interview with them where they actually admitted it. That made me laugh out loud. I was like, ‘OK, good for you.’ It doesn't bother me.” Similarly when The Red Hot Chilli Peppers song “Dani California” came out and people pointed to its similarity with Petty’s Mary Jane's Last dance, he even more pointedly stated : “The truth is, I seriously doubt that there is any negative intent there.” He pretty much made the same comment with Sam Smith and yet he wanted his share of the royalties from that one.
Total hypocritical bollocks. I'll admit I've lost most of the respect I had for Petty off the back of that.
The thing that irks me most is when it is already rich musicians crawling on their bellies after more money.
The only time I have any time for these types of cases is when some jake or joan blogs writes a song and sends it to someone who rejects it and then 2 years later a song co-written by the artist and helpers – which is clearly a blatant rip off of joan blogs' original song – gets released and becomes a hit. This is when it's not homage or inspired by, it is clearly theft. Of course the big difference is that the Joan Blogs' of this world never win their cases – if they even manage to raise enough money to take it through the courts in the first place.
Let's end with Todd. As Todd once said: “Louie Louie” is “More Than a Feeling” is “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” ... Amen.
Tuesday's The Albany Herald (Georgia) had a nice interview with Ernie Isley of the Isley Brothers, where he mentioned Todd.
Does it bother you that some of your songs may be better known by other artists’ versions?
"It’s a feather in our cap. It’s just like us doing Seals and Crofts’ “Summer Breeze” or Todd Rundgren’s “Hello It’s Me.” We all like that. I ran into Todd in California when he was doing an interview and stuck my head in the door. I said, “Hello, it’s me.” We both had a big laugh at that."
Friday, March 06, 2015
Todd gets a passing mention in a review of new Taylor Locke album - Time Stands Still. According to Scottish Daily Express today the influences included The Beatles and The Cars. "But there is also a Laurel Canyon vibe going on, especially on breezy opener Burbank Woman, which has a Jackson Browne/Todd Rundgren feel to it."
Thursday, March 05, 2015
Billed as a "spiritual magnum opus," it is one single (sub divided) track that spans 39 minutes, and is said to fuse Rundgren's "trippy. blue-eyed soul" with Lindstrom's "disco epics" and Nikolaisen's "studio trickery" to result in a "cosmic mix of soul, synth, pop, and disco".
Going to be interesting this one.
Tuesday, March 03, 2015
"[I]t's perched at a point between the past and the present, protest and satire, and that inscrutability is often where Rundgren does interesting work."
"I think two of the best records of my career came out of that period, Nearly Human and 2nd Wind. Those two records I am especially fond of."
Meanwhile, Argentinian publication Pagina/12 has an brief interview with Todd too (think done a while back)
Monday, March 02, 2015
Wednesday, February 25, 2015
There's seventies mood over a large slice of this month's podcast.
The Decemberists - What a Terrible World, What a Beautiful World
Belle & Sebastian - Girls in Peacetime Want to Dance
BC Camplight - How to Die in the North
Nathalie Prass - Nathalie Prass
Meghan Trainor - Title
Gaz Coombs - Matador
Tuesday, February 24, 2015
Monday, February 23, 2015
Friday, February 20, 2015
The intragram shows a white label vinyl with the caption: "Testpressing approved"
So it looks like we'll have two 'Todd' albums this year.
Thursday, February 19, 2015
Wednesday, February 18, 2015
Monday, February 16, 2015
Friday, February 13, 2015
Over at the Guardian, Paul Lester (who can see Todd anywhere - bit like me) comments on new band Swim Mountain and says their sound "draws on “60s studio ethics and modern production techniques … the harmony-heavy songwriters of the 60s and 70s (Rod Argent and Colin Blunstone, Rundgren, Nilsson and the Wilson brothers) "