Tracks and Traces
Since 1976, Tracks and Traces has awaited release. Why? I don’t know. Anyway, with today’s legions merging electronics and rock instrumentation, this joining of Brian Eno with Harmonia (Cluster and Michael Rother) makes the moments Tortoise fans must get to know. Not as poppy as Here Come the Warm Jets and a tad more earthy than Cluster, Tracks and Traces opens with several over three-minute numbers including the country roadster anthem “Vamos Companeros” into the aquaphilic “By the Riverside.” But number four, the quarter-of-an-hour “Sometimes in Autumn,” makes a wank-free pastoral space to match their rural Forst studio. With synthesizers, drum machines, E-guitar, E-bass, keyboards and Eno’s sparse, reclined vocals, these songs fill a room without pretension or waste.