To casual fans, the cult of Todd Rundgren may seem a bit ludicrous. He scored a few pop hits in the late '60s and early '70s, including infectious nuggets like "Hello, It's Me," "We Gotta Get You a Woman," and "I Saw the Light," then formed Utopia, whose sometimes grandiose progressive rock was often flayed by critics, and since has been largely estranged from the pop charts. Except, just below the surface, Rundgren has been astonishingly prolific all along in many different musical guises, and often as an innovator, especially on the technological front. When he wants, he can be a quintessential popmeister, but he's also a musical chameleon who has dabbled with everything from hard rock to Philly soul to garage stuff and symphonic rock. As a producer, he's covered an astounding range, from Grand Funk to James Cotton, Patti Smith, Meat Loaf, Shaun Cassidy, and XTC. Then, a couple of years or so ago, he took over from Ric Ocasek as lead singer of the New Cars, covering Cars hits as well as adding new automotive tunes. This tour appears to be Rundgren as Rundgren, with a new solo album reportedly in the works for this summer. The band will include guitarist Jesse Gress, longtime bassist Kasim Sulton, and former Tubes drummer Prairie Prince. All ages.
Tue., Jan. 22, 7:30 p.m., 2008