Something/Anything? [Explicit Lyrics]

( 5 )

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
After two albums, Todd Rundgren had one hit and a burgeoning cult following, plus growing respect as a hitmaking record producer. There's no question he was busy, but as it turns out, all this work only scratched the surface of his ambition. He had decided to abandon the Runt pretense and recorded a full double album by himself save for one side. Others had recorded one-man albums before, most notably Stevie Wonder and Paul McCartney, but Rundgren -- without borrowing musically from either artist -- captured the homemade ambience of McCartney with the visionary feel of Music of My Mind, adding an encyclopedic knowledge of pop music from Gilbert & Sullivan ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
After two albums, Todd Rundgren had one hit and a burgeoning cult following, plus growing respect as a hitmaking record producer. There's no question he was busy, but as it turns out, all this work only scratched the surface of his ambition. He had decided to abandon the Runt pretense and recorded a full double album by himself save for one side. Others had recorded one-man albums before, most notably Stevie Wonder and Paul McCartney, but Rundgren -- without borrowing musically from either artist -- captured the homemade ambience of McCartney with the visionary feel of Music of My Mind, adding an encyclopedic knowledge of pop music from Gilbert & Sullivan through Jimi Hendrix, plus the crazed zeal of a pioneer. Listening to Something/Anything? is a mind-altering trip in itself, no matter how many instantly memorable, shamelessly accessible pop songs are scattered throughout the album. Each side of the double album is a concept onto itself. The first side is "a bouquet of ear-catching melodies"; side two is "the cerebral side"; on side three "the kid gets heavy"; side four is his mock pop operetta, recorded with a full band including the Sales brothers. It gallops through everything -- Carole King tributes "I Saw the Light", classic ballads "Hello It's Me," "It Wouldn't Have Made Any Difference", Motown "Wolfman Jack", blinding power pop "Couldn't I Just Tell You", psychedelic hard rock "Black Maria", pure weirdness "I Went to the Mirror", blue-eyed soul "Dust in the Wind", and scores of brilliant songs that don't fall into any particular style "Cold Morning Light," "It Takes Two to Tango". It's an amazing journey that's remarkably unpretentious. He may have contributed self-penned liner notes, but Rundgren peppers his writing with self-aware, self-deprecating asides, and he also indulges his bizarre sense of humor with gross-outs "Piss Aaron" and sheer quirkiness, such as an aural tour of the studio at the beginning of side two. Something/Anything? has a ton of loose ends throughout: plenty of studio tricks, slight songs but no filler, snippets of dialogue, and purposely botched beginnings, but all these throwaways simply add context -- they're what makes the album into a kaleidoscopic odyssey through the mind of an insanely gifted pop music obsessive. Rundgren occasionally touched on the sheer brilliance of Something/Anything? in his later work, but this extraordinary double album is the one time where his classicist songcraft and messy genius converged to create an utterly unique, glorious record.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/25/1990
  • Label: Rhino
  • UPC: 081227110727
  • Catalog Number: 71107
  • Sales rank: 28,031

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Todd Rundgren Primary Artist, Guitar, Vocals, Multi Instruments
Rick Derringer Guitar
Michael Brecker Horn, Tenor Saxophone
Amos Garrett Guitar
Jim Colegrove Bass
Vicki Sue Robinson Vocals
Rick Vito Guitar
Ben Keith Guitar, Pedal Steel Guitar, Steel Guitar
Brooks Baxes Vocals
Randy Brecker Trumpet, Horn
Anthony Carrabba Vocals
Dennis Cooley Vocals
Richard Corey Vocals
Brother Gene Dinwiddie Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
Henry Fanton Vocals
Jim Horn Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
Robbie Kagale Guitar
Serge Kaken Conductor
Jackie Kelso Saxophone
John Kelson Jr. Tenor Saxophone
Mark "Moogy" Klingman Organ, Piano, Keyboards
Robbie Kogel Guitar
Bugsy Maugh Bass
Billy Mundi Drums
Cecilia Norfleet Vocals
Edward Olmos Clarinet, Vocals
Barry Rodgers Trombone
Barry Rogers Trombone
Hope Ruff Vocals
Hunt Sales Drums
Tony Sales Bass
Charlie Schoning Piano
John Siegler Bass, Cello
John Siomos Drums
Ralph Wash Guitar
Stu Woods Bass
Serge Katzen Conga
Technical Credits
Todd Rundgren Arranger, Producer
Nick Jameson Engineer
Berry Gordy Jr. Composer
Mark "Moogy" Klingman Composer
John Siegler Contributor
Dan Turbeville Engineer
James Lowe Engineer
B. Strong Composer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 5 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 23, 2012

    "Keep Your Head and Everything Will Be Cool"...from Co

    "Keep Your Head and Everything Will Be Cool"...from Couldn't I Just Tell You on disc 2 of this essential LP - track through all the cuts on disc 2 for one of the most memorable rides from a popmeister genius and a true star

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  • Posted October 1, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Really Enjoyed this one

    I bought this on a whim based on an All Music Guide Review and the recommendation of the Music Manager at Barnes & Noble. It turned out to be an excellent album. The first six songs on each of the album's two discs are excellent, the second six songs, on each CD, are more experimental but still quite good. Rundgren even has a parody Rock Opera to end the album, which does get a little too silly. But never the less this is a really good album and contains some great pop/rock songs "Hello It's Me," "Couldn't I Just Tell you," "Torch Song," "It Really Wouldn't Have Made Any Difference," just to name a few. There is an excellent single disc in here if you want to skip over tracks but overall I thought this was excellent and I am very happy I bought it. Recommended to fans of mid-1970s pop/rock and those who can take some humor in their music.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Classic Angst

    Evincing the tricksy turns of every emotion of our Youth, Todd's classic double disc contains classic works: Hello, It's Me, Couldn't I Just Tell You, I Saw the Light. It Wouldn't Have Made Any Difference has been covered by disparate artists ranging from Johnny Mathis to Alison Kraus. Personal favorites that cause me to sing along in the car: Saving Grace, Cold Morning Light, One More Day.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Perhaps we shouldn't let our hands get sore....

    ...yep, the Viking song speaks to me. Todd made one of the great two disk LPs of all time. Solid is the best way to describe this one. Acrobatic musicianship, ascerbic wit and incredible range all come together. The period when this album released saw more than a few "four-siders" release and only a few were cover2cover successes. Little Feat's Waiting for Columbus is in this class of amazingly solid two diskers, but TR is the master!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    The Masterpiece

    Yeah, yeah... this is the one universally acknowledged Rundgren masterwork, and deservedly so-- a better collection of pop classics has NEVER been recorded by anyone. But this Rundgrenphile does not regard it as the best. For one thing, S/A? explores only one side of Rundgren's genius; for another, the three self-recorded sides could have benefited greatly from the help of a few session musicians-- at least a bass player and drummer. Nevertheless, this double album is worth every nickel of its price. Overlooked gems include: ''Sweeter Memories'', ''The Night the Carousel Burned Down'', ALL of Side 3. The unadulterated acclaim given this record later caused Todd a lot of frustration, I'm sure.

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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews