Brian Eno's Long-Lost Collaboration with Harmonia Unearthed; Appleblim and Shackleton Readying Remix Companion

BY Brock ThiessenPublished Jul 6, 2009

The last few years have undeniably been great ones for Krautrock obsessives, what with a small, dedicated handful of labels digging up and reissuing several long-lost gems from the genre's golden years. This has meant a string of recent re-releases by the likes of Faust, Amon Düül II, Manuel Göttsching, La Düsseldorf and, last but not least, Harmonia, who will finally see their Brian Eno collaboration, Tracks & Traces, get reissued this fall.

On September 19, Grönland Records will repress the long-out-of-print and downright awesome joint effort by Eno and Harmonia, the Krautrock super-trio made up of Neu!'s Michael Rother and Cluster's Hans-Joachim Roedelius and Dieter Moebius. The album was originally recorded in 1976 but came out in 1997 and, frustratingly enough, was deleted soon after.

"Eno brought a great intellect, boundless pleasure in making music and a font of experience in the realm of popular music, and that clearly opened a door that was already closed," Resident Advisor quotes Roedelius as saying of the album, which was actually recorded after Harmonia decided to call it quits.

According to Roedelius, the troubles surrounding the release of Tracks & Traces were partly due to Eno losing the master tapes, but the Cluster/Harmonia member was able to piece together enough of the album from his copies of Eno's four-track tapes. Also, Rother apparently had an old copy hidden away somewhere, and after digitalizing the album's tracks, he found lots of material that didn't make the record's initial cut.

"Initially I asked myself what made sense musically, which of the many tracks I particularly liked and which reflected the broad musical scope of our collaboration with Brian Eno the best?" Rother says of the upcoming reissue. "The next step was about how best to integrate the selected tracks into the existing album. Instead of the normal practice of tacking them onto the end of the album as bonus tracks, I proposed changing the structure of the album and the order of the tracks. Luckily, everyone involved agreed on that."

What this all makes for is a reissue that has a vastly different tracklisting than the original 1997 release and one that contains three previously unreleased tracks. What's more, according to Resident Advisor, a remix package of Tracks & Traces is also due out sometime later this year and will be helmed by Appleblim and Shackleton, both of Skull Disco fame.

For now, here's the new tracklisting for the revamped Tracks & Traces:

1. "Welcome"
2. "Atmosphere"
3. "Vamos Campaneros"
4. "By The Riverside"
5. "Luneburg Heath"
6. "Sometimes In Autumn"
7. "Weird Dream"
8. "Almost"
9. "Les Demoiselles"
10. "When Shade Was Born"
11. "Trace"
12. "Aubade"

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