Review Revue: Utopia – Deface the Music

Utopia - Deface the Music

Okay, buckle up you guys. This is where I usually write a few words to introduce the album at hand, but our friends at KCMU had a lot to say on this particular album, so I don’t want to take up too much space – and by “on this album” I don’t mean in any way relevant to the album, I mean they wrote a lot of words – most of them hurling verbal abuse at each other – and put them, physically, on the cover of the album. Suffice it to say, in 1980 Todd Rundgren and some other guys made an album of original music that sounded as much like the Beatles as possible, and in 1984 someone very generously donated a copy to KCMU. And this is where our story picks up:

“Todd & pals pretend they are the Beatles and very, very well! Thanks to Dave-O Clements for donating this!”

“Thanks, Dirk! Now my own copy won’t get so worn out!”

“Among my more favorite cuts are ‘Feel Too Good,’ ‘Take It Home’ + ‘Everybody Else Is Wrong,’ which could almost be titled ‘I Am the Strawberry.'”

“Well, fuck, we already knew Rundgren can imitate, it’s creativity he lacks, eh dave? -TW [or is it JW?]”

“John Wright I presume? I take it from this ignorant statement that you are a) not familiar with the fast quantity of Todd R’s material b) without taste c) generally engaging in puerile scribbling which amuses those who know originality when they hear it (like your faves ABC). Answer: D all of the above.”

“I love ya Jonathan! xoxoxoxo your taste makes me whimper.”

“I don’t know about the rest of Todd R’s material, but this is a cheesy attempt at getting people to buy a Bealts record by a band that isn’t the Beatles. I’m so sick of the real Beatles, this only makes me sicker. What a wast of time. Quality, not * [stars?] is what we need.”

“That’s TW, Tom Weber, so don’t blame Jon Wright. Actually, I quite like ‘Something/Anything,’ but most of Runt’s material is derivative and boring. Do you always take such offense at what are, after all, just opinions? You must be pretty boring to argue with. “Oh, and at least I sign myself.)”

“Alfred’s feelings about this disc are on the mark as far as I’m concerned. It’s for my remarks, aimed at who I truly believed was Jon W., I have no apologies seeing as I wasn’t entirely serious, which my good friend Mr. R. would recognize. As for TW: Your estimations concerning my bombastic approach to addressing opinions is clearly a brilliant insight. I AM boring to argue with! I DO take extreme offense! It is for these reasons that I write volumes so that vengeance and self indulgent outrage can merge into a perfect expression of pure hate. TODD RULES!”

“Abuse, now – that’s something I can get into. Exchanging insults is so much more exciting than arguing, don’t you agree? And so much easier. Why, you don’t even have to bother thinking. After all, we wouldn’t want to overstrain what are, um, well, limited faculties, now would we? Which is why we listen to Todd in the first place, of course. But, hey – that’s okay. Rundgren has his uses. He’s a great soporific, for instance. Some of us use valium, some use Utopia. But, y’know: Brain relaxation feels so much better if you exercise it once in a while. Give it a try. -TW”

“How can I respond to this tripe? It is all too obvious that TW was not concerned with what I wrote. He did not address what I was trying to convey; he was much too upset that I bothered to reply to his runaway wit. That was an ‘insult.’ Well, I must say: his being upset was warranted but for different reasons than he would presume. That I should waste my time with this individual’s silliness; that’s disturbing. But look at it this way: He’s making a fool out of himself in grand fashion. If my exchanging print with this gentleman allows us a good guffaw at his expense – I don’t mind scribbling off random comments so that he may be ‘inspired’ to attack. That his attack has all the ferocity of a drugged, toothless lab monkey’s (he is as easily manipulated as the aforementioned critter) is a bit disappointing, yet I’m sure this temper tantrum he is committing to words is effecting [sic] his performance. What a guy. Oh yeah: Todd Rules!”

“Hey, are you suffering from projection or something? It’s not often you see someone make such a laughable ass of themself at such length. Guffaw, indeed. As a last word, permit me to respond to the essence of what you have said in the 3-1/2 stickers you have so far filled (giving them the full consideration, length, and detail they deserve: [_____________ _________________ ________________ _______________ _____________ ___________ _____________ ___________ _______] There, that was easy. Now, if you don’t mind, I’ll find something more entertaining and intellectually challenging to do, like analyzing the lyrics to Duran Duran records. Or Rundgren, perhaps.”

[something scribbled out here]

“I’m looking.”

“This LP kicks ass and takes names!”

“I like it.”

“This is ridiculously bad.”

“Hey! Don’t blame me folks. I had nothing to do with this!!! -Jon Wright a.k.a. JW”

“Bull s**t! This Tom Weber guy doesn’t exist! F**k you, JW! Todd rules!”

“Hey! I do so exist! Cogito ergo sum, and all that. I teleport in here on odd Thursdays to deface albums, abuse typewriters, and generally provoke people. Cerebus rules OK!! (who’s ‘Todd’?) Incidentally, I had one once, but the wheels fell off.”

“This isn’t an argument! Yes it is! Not it isn’t!”

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