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Rundgren in Peoria

My vision goes red during a cover of Arthur Brown's "Fire."
My vision goes red during a cover of Arthur Brown’s “Fire.”

I didn’t want to go to a Todd Rundgren show alone. Why? Because I knew I’d be struggling to convey to you what exactly happened if I didn’t have a witness.

We were warned, of course. It was billed as “An Unpredictable Evening with Todd Rundgren.” Some of the reviews of this tour were rather mixed, but I really don’t see how anything could be surprising.

Todd came out on stage at Limelight Eventplex on Saturday night and said our most hated phrase almost as a threat:

“Will we play in Peoria? Yes, we will.”

He then went on to warn us about calling out requests (they wouldn’t be honored) and bragged that his band had “a slush pile of songs” to choose from.

“How many of you are on a date? Expecting to get laid afterward?”

There’s something Howard Stern-ish about Todd. His hair? His obvious intelligence? His dirty uncle vibe?

But his voice was never in question. He may not hit the falsetto range with as much gusto anymore, but he has perfect pitch. I can’t say the same of many of his peers.

At some point, I glance over at my friend Nate to make sure that I’m not stroking out. TODD IS PLAYING A RECORD FOR US THAT ISN’T EVEN HIS.

He did land a few jams, though. “I Saw the Light” and “Hello It’s Me” were all Richard Cheese‘d out and only recognizable by lyrics alone. He’s apparently been doing this weirdness with his hits since 1997.

“If a Todd concert is on your bucket list, then this is your chance, young dude.” $25 to fulfill my dad’s prophecy, even if Todd never stood up.

Setlist after the jump…

  1. IMG_3160Jaan Pahechan Ho
  2. Love of the Common Man
  3. Running Bear (Johnny Preston cover)
  4. Cliché
  5. Black & White
  6. Endless Prairie (Lorne Greene cover)
  7. I’m a Gun (Lorne Greene cover)
  8. I Don’t Want to Tie You Down
  9. Big Weekend
  10. Born to Synthesize
  11. It Wouldn’t Have Made Any Difference
  12. Song of the Viking
  13. Compassion
  14. Fire (Arthur Brown cover)
  15. Are You Havin’ Any Fun (Tony Bennett cover)
  16. I Saw the Light
  17. IMG_3213Hello It’s Me
  18. Lysistrata (Utopia song)
  19. One World (Utopia song)
    Encore:
  20. Too Far Gone
  21. Past
  22. Love in Action (Utopia song)

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