- Released: October 27, 1987
- Label: Rhino
- 1.Overture: Mountaintop And Sunrise / Communion With The Sun
- 2.Magic Dragon Theatre
- 4.Eternal Love
- 5.Sunburst Finish
- 7.Singring And The Glass Guitar (An Electrified Fairytale)
Utopia: Todd Rundgren (vocals, guitar, piano, saxophone); Roger Powell (vocals, keyboards, synthesizer); Kasim Sulton (vocals, bass); John "Willie" Wilcox (vocals, drums, percussion).
Recorded at Bearsville Sound Studio, Bearsville, New York and Utopia Sound, Lake Hill, New York.
Ra was the Egyptian god of the sun as worshipped by Akhnaten. Your prog-rock warning bell should be going off right now, but if you're expecting some Emerson Lake and Palmer meets Spinal Tap travesty, rest easy. RA is definitely one of the most progressive albums by Todd Rundgren and Utopia, but it's also a surprisingly tuneful, meaty album not really that far removed from Rundgren's earlier pop records.
Utopia's new, slimmed-down lineup of Rundgren, Roger Powell, Kasim Sultan, and Willie Wilcox (a lineup that would remain intact for a decade) is a musically tight but never boringly meticulous unit. Tunes like "Overture" and "Sunburst Finish" feature tricky fusion-oriented soloing, but they also have some absolutely rapturous Byrds-like harmonies. The 18-minute fairy-tale suite "Singring and the Glass Guitar" sounds like Rundgren's homage to Brian Wilson's "Mount Vernon and Fairway," and "Magic Dragon Theatre" also recalls the Beach Boys' most lysergic work.