In 2003 three Dutch musicians had the idea to start a musical project to pay homage to the progressive rock music of the seventies. They called this project Trion, a contraction of 'trio' and '(Mello)tron'. This trio consist of keyboard player Edo Spanninga (Flamborough Head), guitarist Eddie Mulder (ex-Flamborough Head, Leap Day, Pink Faces), who also plays the bass guitar, and drummer Menno Boomsma (Odyssice). They recorded and released their debut album Tortoise in the same year. At the time I described the album to be a must have for all lovers of music from the seventies featuring the mighty sound of the Mellotron and the melodic guitar play. I rated the album with four stars. The follow-up album Pilgrim (2007) contains the same kind of instrumental music.
For several years both Tortoise and Pilgrim were no longer available, but out of the blue a reissue of the debut album appeared. It has the same kind of Roger Dean-like artwork, but compared to the original release two tracks have been added. These two additional tracks both appeared on the famous releases by Colossus. Fast Forward can be found on Decameron (2011) and Vanha Surullinen appeared on the tribute album Tuonen Titär 2 (2009) and features vocal contributions by Margriet Boomsma (Flamborough Head) and Jos Harteveld (Leap Day, Pink Faces).
Together with this reissue a brand new studio album of Trion was released called Funfair Fantasy. On this album the same musicians are responsible for the same kind of music. And once again the music recorded by bands like Camel, Greenslade, Pink Floyd, Focus , England and Druid crossed my mind while listening to the ten new compositions. Just like their previous albums most tracks are rather laid-back and mellow, but it's a real treat to the ears to listen to those pieces and to the melodic guitar parts performed by Eddie Mulder, who currently plays in Leap Day and Pink Faces (see review of the Northern Prog Festival). But that also applies to the tasteful and pleasant synthesizer solos and the many Mellotron parts played by Edo Spanninga. It's difficult to mention any favourites or musical highlights since all tracks are equally high-levelled.
Funfair Fantasy, the new album by Trion, is an excellent one. It will be principally loved by people who like the seventies retro style that could be found as well on the most recent albums recorded by acts like Willowglass and Pymlico. I would like to advise people who enjoy this third CD by Trion to check out their previous two albums as well.
**** / **** Henri Strik (edited by Peter Willemsen)
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