Trace

Birds

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This is the second of three records by Trace, a trio led by keyboardist Rick van der Linden. By the time they recorded their second LP just one year after taping their debut, they had already

undergone a change in personnel, with Ian Mosely replacing Pierre van der Linden on drums. The album's first side is sort of an extended suite, though it is an incongruous mix of pipe organ with a plodding electric bass and drums during "King Bird." "Preacher Bird" features a weak lyric sung with little feeling by bassist Jaap van Eik and has a prominent role for the acoustic piano, although the synthesizer and harpsichord sneak in as well. "Bouree" is taken from Bach's "English Suite No. 2 in A minor" (BMV 807) and is turned into a miniature hard rocker before it deteriorates into a comical midsection with fake bird calls and a tiresome vamp. But "Opus 1065," the leader's interpretation of Bach's "Concerto for Harpsichord and Strings in A minor" (BMV 1065) never picks up sufficient steam, though it features some tasty violin by guest Darryl Way. The one true bright spot of this release is van der Linden's sprightly solo piano arrangement of jazzman Bix Beiderbecke's "In a Mist," which unfortunately is barely over a minute in length. The downhill slide of Trace on this second LP is painfully obvious, so it is doubtful that there is much demand for this long-deleted record.

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