Thursday, April 16, 2015



oddToddlyenough said...

Thanks for posting this!
The boys seem to be in a mood...are they just tired, or was the writing already on the wall, knowing they would soon break up?
Must have been frustrating, knowing how good you were, only to be vastly underappreciated.
I have very fond memories of exciting concerts - from RA to Adventures to the Oblivion tour (great album, great show, so very underrated.
I'd love to see them shake the cobwebs and give us one final 40th anniversary tour next year!
What the hell, might as well toss in an album too.

from 23rd said...

I agree with you regarding Oblivion.
I think it was the band`s strongest album and the tour was great. I saw it at Webster Hall (in its Ritz days). We had to wait in the rain until nearly eleven before the doors opened, the band ran out into two cabs and we (all 50 or so of us) went in to wait for an hour while the guys dined (or got fucked up somewhere).
It was a shamefully small crowd for a great performance. No wonder they had to hang it up after POV. Roger noted that the dissolution was due to "insufficient response from the marketplace." He was right: almost no one bought the albums and even fewer showed up for the concerts.
Having said that, I think it would be a mistake to try to recreate the band now. Honestly, everyone is just too old. You can`t go home again.

dtopia said...

Todd seems fit, bouncing around on stage.
Kasim isn't THAT old .
Willie is still very involved in different musical ventures (and most drummers age well).
Roger could be a concern with (II believe) arthritic hands.
It seems feasible to do a 10 - 15 city tour...
An album would be totally doable physically, and I feel pretty confident that working together again would biting out the old Utopian creativity.
I will wait for it forever.
I will wait for it....

But, I know the hour is getting layayayayte��

oops! dtopia said...

The above should read BRING out the old Utopian creativity, not BITING....stupid auto correct Lol

from 23rd said...

The thing is, Todd has said that a reunion couldn`t just be for a quickie, major-market tour. It would have to be a more serious undertaking.
If so few cared 30 years ago, I don`t see many more being interested now. It would be the same problem all over again.
In addition, I agree with Grace Slick that a rock and roll stage is not the appropriate place for old people. There`s just something not quite right about seniors grimacing over an electric guitar. The whole idea of a "rock band" is an adolescent one; I don`t know how seriously they could involve themselves at this point.

Anonymous said...

Their strength was their melodies, lyrics and musicianship and vocals; not that they jumped around like a rock band. I don't think that goes away or that jumping around much is necessary to get it across. They have charisma and talent.

from 23rd said...

I agree with you on their musical strength, but those qualities attracted almost no one in an era when the playing field was much less crowded. Nowadays, melody is alien, lyrics irrelevant, and 60s-style pop even more ancient to modern ears. I can`t imagine a sufficient audience for the group today.
(BTW, Todd was the only member of the band with charisma; indeed, he and Grace Slick were the two most riveting live performers I ever saw. The rest of Utopia were cyphers in comparison).

Winston Smith said...

The '82 Utopia self-titled album on a Network was a staggering work of pop genius. It barely made a ripple on the charts, but drew some nice crowds when they toured it. I would kill to see Utopia again in their prime. I have no idea whether they can catch lightning in a bottle again. Todd and Kasim are still in good voice, I am guessing Willie can still play, but Roger looked like hammered shit in Akron. He is a fine keyboardist but I wonder if he can still cut the mustard. Hopefully we shall see.

Anonymous said...

Seems clear the 4sum were not enjoying the inane interviews they endured. Clearly they were never ass kissing guys who radio jocks & programmers went nuts for. I believe many more people would have gotten On The Road w. UTOPIA if they heard their music when it was new. In today's world the pendulum has swung so far from song craft & great lyrics that Todd/Utopia would be pretty jarring & hard for younger people to feel connected to.
I believe a reunion would be a great time to invite people who didn't know the music then. Most in their 40's or over would be well impressed & some 'kids' could see the light as well.
Regards from Badgerland

Anonymous said...

Yes I have some new favorite bands and then I find out they've been going for about ten years. I think it takes at least 10 years to get really good at anything, but then the really younger people are listening to all eras. They don't really care. I listen to a lot of alternative, not so much electronic stuff; the Black Angels is about as trancey as I go. But I like Fall Out Boy, Panic at the Disco and The All American Rejects. Offspring. Stuff with a sense of humor.They ref that 80s/90s period with a rock twist. Panic also does some lovely ballad stuff and a very clever takeoff on country on one song. They have an obnoxious lead singer but he is also extremely funny and talented. Anyway those sorts of bands remind me of Utopia for musical reasons, certain songs and chord progressions.

The blood line of David. said...

OOP's /RA tour was Spectacular. Greatest Hits utopia 1983 tour was sublime. Oblivion blew me away when i first heard it. I was/am so impressed with Roger Powell. M<issed the Oblivion tour. Saw POV/Love Bomb at the Arie Crown theater in Chicago with my Bro. Excellent show and presentation. No oblivion tunes that sucked. Fairly short set. Half of the Audience left after Utopia and more left as the Tubes played their set. Me and my brother thought the tubes Love Bomb set was outstanding and they played all of our favorites. Odd pairing but little did we know that would be the last time I would see my favorite Band in concert every again. Pre Adventures show with Utopia starting off playing "last of the new wave riders" with Todd facing Wille on the the drums, then whipping around on the Lead intro on guitar and wildly running and jumping. climbing around the stage was awesome!. Seven Rays on the Pyramid was insane. Sucked that the deface the Music tour never made it to Chicago. First hearing "One World " played live by utopia was an experience. always wondered why they did not play certain songs such as Marriage of heaven and hell or rape of the young again.