Wednesday, September 26, 2018
  • Stuck in the '80s
  • Steve Spears

What they lacked in video, Utopia’s songs made up for with style

Here's today's history lesson from Lost and Found columnist Kevin Wuench:

While I love all '80s music, I have a sweet spot for early '80s AOR and I've been a little neglectful of that genre lately, so for the next few weeks we'll set aside the hipsters and rev up the Trans Am, glance at our feathered hair in the rearview mirror and kick off the week with Utopia and Hammer In My Heart.

A musical force in the '80s, Todd Rundgren was prolific as a producer, solo artist and as leader of Utopia. While Rundgren never seemed to make videos for his solo work, a lot of his Utopia material had promotional videos. Unlike the other two Utopia videos we've featured on Lost and Found (Crybaby and Feet Don't Fail Me Now) that were diverse in their display, Hammer In My Heart is not much on frills as the video's main trick is stop action/repeated motions by the band on stage. The footage is culled from the band's performance at MTV's first anniversary party/concert.

Whatever is lacking on the video end is more than made up on the audio side as Hammer In My Heart pounds away with an irresistible beat and searing guitars. Released as a single in early 1983, Hammer In My Heart missed the mark on the charts becoming only a minor hit on the Mainstream Rock Charts and failing to hit the pop charts for the New York band.

WATCH THE VIDEO HERE

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