Wednesday 10/20/21 1am ET: Feature LP: Todd Rundgren – Something/Anything? (1972)

Something/Anything? is the third album by American musician Todd Rundgren, released in February 1972. It was his first double album, and was recorded in late 1971 in Los Angeles, New York City and Bearsville Studios, Woodstock. Three quarters of the album was recorded in the studio with Rundgren playing all instruments and singing all vocals, as well as being the producer. The final quarter contained a number of tracks recorded live in the studio without any overdubs, save for a short snippet of archive recordings from the 1960s.

Rundgren had become confident enough at other instruments beyond his standard guitar and keyboards that he had tackled in earlier releases, and this, coupled with a general dissatisfaction with other studio musicians, led him to temporarily relocate to Los Angeles in an attempt to record an entire album single-handedly. After he had created significantly more material than would fit on a standard LP, an earthquake struck LA. He decided to head back to New York for some live sessions, with the help of Moogy Klingman, to lighten the mood. The final sessions were in Bearsville, where the remainder of the recording and mixing took place, and this created enough material for a double album.

The album peaked at number 29 on the Billboard 200 and was certified gold three years after its release. A single taken from the album, “Hello It’s Me”, was a top-five hit in the US in late 1972, and it contained a further hit, “I Saw the Light”. Something/Anything? later attracted critical acclaim as one of the most significant records of the 1970s. In 2003, the album was ranked number 173 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time, maintaining the rating in a 2012 revised list, and later ranked at number 396 in the 2020 edition. It was voted number 797 in the third edition of Colin Larkin’s All Time Top 1000 Albums (2000). After Something/Anything, Rundgren moved away from the straightforward pop ballads present on this album to more experimental territory and progressive rock in later releases, beginning with A Wizard, A True Star.

  1. “I Saw the Light” 2:56
  2. “It Wouldn’t Have Made Any Difference” 3:50
  3. “Wolfman Jack” 2:54
  4. “Cold Morning Light” 3:55
  5. “It Takes Two to Tango (This Is for the Girls)” 2:41
  6. “Sweeter Memories” 3:36

Side two: The Cerebral Side

  1. “Intro” 1:11
  2. “Breathless” 3:15
  3. “The Night the Carousel Burned Down” 4:29
  4. “Saving Grace” 4:12
  5. “Marlene” 3:54
  6. “Song of the Viking” 2:35
  7. “I Went to the Mirror” 4:05

Side three: The Kid Gets Heavy

  1. “Black Maria” 5:20
  2. “One More Day (No Word)” 3:43
  3. “Couldn’t I Just Tell You” 3:34
  4. “Torch Song” 2:52
  5. “Little Red Lights” 4:53

Side four: Baby Needs a New Pair of Snakeskin Boots (A Pop Operetta)

  1. “Overture–My Roots” “Money (That’s What I Want)” “Messin’ with the Kid” (Mel London)” 2:29
  2. “Dust in the Wind” 3:49
  3. “Piss Aaron” 3:26
  4. “Hello It’s Me” 4:42
  5. “Some Folks Is Even Whiter Than Me” 3:56
  6. “You Left Me Sore” 3:13
  7. “Slut” 4:03