"Sometimes I Don't Know What to Feel" Released: April 1973
A Wizard, a True Star is the fourth album by American musician Todd Rundgren, released on March 2, 1973. Its music was a significant departure from his previous album Something/Anything? (1972). He attributed the idiosyncratic sound of A Wizard, a True Star to his experimentation with psychedelic drugs, and said that he "became more aware ... [o]f what music and sound were like in my internal environment, and how different that was from the music I had been making." Upon release, the album reached number 86 on the Billboard 200. It has since been recognized for its influence on later generations of bedroom musicians.
In Rolling Stone, James Isaacs wrote, "I doubt that even the staunchest Rundgren cultists will want to subject themselves to most of the japery on side one, which would be better suited for a cartoon soundtrack. On the other hand, side two's restraint, its brimming good humor and its ambience of innocence is irresistible, and helps save A Wizard, A True Star from total disaster." Writing in Creem, Robert Christgau deemed Rundgren "a minor songwriter with major woman problems who's good with the board and has a sense of humor".Patti Smith was more enthusiastic in her review for the magazine: "Blasphemy even the gods smile on. Rock and roll for the skull. A very noble concept. Past present and tomorrow in one glance. Understanding through musical sensation. Todd Rundgren is preparing us for a generation of frenzied children who will dream in animation."
In MusicHound Rock (1996), Christopher Scapelliti called the record "a fascinating sonic collage that skews his pop-star image 180 degrees".Ben Sisario, on the other hand, wrote in The Rolling Stone Album Guide (2004) that it was "an endurance test of stylistic diversity, with just three fully realized songs ('Sometimes I Don't Know What to Feel,' 'International Feel,' and 'Just One Victory') stranded in the midst of so much half-baked sonic decoration." The album was included in the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die. In 2018, Roger Joseph Manning Jr. praised the record for its unusual sound: "Stuff is distorting. Parts are panned all crazy; there’s so much nuttiness going on, but it ends up enhancing his songs because it adds that much more charm and character."