Nazz – Nazz
Nazz was formed in Philadelphia in 1967 by Todd Rundgren and Carson Van Osten. They released this, their eponymous debut, in October of 1968. The band took its name from the Yardbirds song The Nazz Are Blue, which was a reflection of the heavy influence they took from 1960’s British rock. The album was not a big seller (though it did receive heavy airplay in places like Philly and Boston), but it does feature the fantastic single Open My Eyes b/w the original version of Rundgren’s Hello It’s Me, the definitive version of which he would re-record for his 1972 solo album, Something/Anything?.
In his AllMusic review, Stephen Thomas Erlewine suggests the album was a blueprint for American power pop bands that followed, and that even though some of its songs haven’t aged well, it’s still a good album worth listening to because of its place in music history. He writes:
…they just like to try a lot of different styles, cross-breeding their favorite bands in a blatant act of fanboy worship. At their best, the results of this approach are flat-out stunning, as on the lead cut “Open My Eyes,” which twists the Who’s “I Can’t Explain” around until it winds up in Roy Wood (founding member of both The Move and ELO) territory.
Interestingly, another band called Nazz formed around the same time, and when they learned of Rundgren and Van Osten’s group, they changed their name to Alice Cooper.
- Open My Eyes
- Back of Your Mind
- See What You Can Be
- Hello It’s Me
- Wildwood Blues
- If That’s the Way You Feel
- When I Get My Plane
- Lemming Song
- She’s Goin’ Down
2 thoughts on “October ’68 – All That Nazz”
“Interestingly, another band called Nazz formed around the same time, and when they learned of Rundgren and Van Osten’s group, they changed their name to Alice Cooper.” Didn’t know this!
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Nor did I. 🙂