Tracker - Tracker

geoviangeovian Earth Orbit
edited March 2021 in Year-1982

This is the one-off band formed partly from ex members of the Steve Miller Band, unfortunately not one of Elektra's more astute signings.

Tracker - 1982 Tracker
ARTIST: Tracker
ALBUM: Tracker
LABEL: Elektra
SERIAL: E1-60118
YEAR: 1982
CD REISSUE: Discogs Reissue List

LINEUP: Mark Burger - lead vocals * Greg Douglass - guitars * Byron Allred - keyboards * Lonnie Turner - bass * Gary Mallaber - drums, percussion, backing vocals

Additional Musicians: Kenny Lewis - bass (#5, 7) * John Massaro - rhythm guitar, backing vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 Steppin' Over The Line * 02 She's Gonna Be Trouble * 03 If You're Leaving * 04 Say What You Want To Say * 05 Take It Or Leave It * 06 Walking Along With You * 07 Don't Let Go * 08 Ronnie * 09 .337 * 10 I Had Enough



On paper, this lineup looked like it had some mileage in their collective shoes, but they never got out of the starting blocks. Turner, Allred, Mallaber and guest Massaro had all worked with the Steve Miller Band while Douglass came from the Greg Kihn Band. The one member without a resume was lead singer Mark Burger, who was not sighted again after this one-off effort.

I can probably guess that the A&R guys at Elektra thought they were onto something with this lineup considering the musicians involved, their prevailing history playing in quirky pop-rock acts which during 1982 was flavour of the week. Cashing in? For sure, but in hindsight they really shouldn't have signed off on the music that was delivered because the end result wasn't quite up to spec.

The Songs

For me, the issue with Tracker are threefold; the quality of the songs - there's not a hit single really to be found anywhere. Secondly, they don't settle on any one particular genre - they pick away at a few like food from a smorgasbord. If I was a betting man, I'd suggest a hybrid of radio rock and power-pop. The other sticking point is the awful dry drum mix. Maybe the producer had listened to a few too many Police albums beforehand?

'Steppin' Over The Line' was a good selection as the opening track, a bouncy number with a decent chorus and a certain level of appeal. Tracker deliver a ballad early on called 'If You're Leaving', they probably should've placed this further down the tracklisting as the album loses momentum quickly.

The best track here is the fiery Toto soundalike 'Take It Or Leave It' which provides the album's highwater mark. Then Tracker veer away to some synth pop patter as 'Walking Along With You' steals some ideas from 80's era Genesis as Mark Burger sings in a style similar to Phil Collins.

The band ramp it up on the coarse rocker 'Don't Let Go' coupled with some zany synth parts, while the keyboard (Wurlitzer) dominated 'I Had Enough' is another good tune.

In Summary

'Tracker' has never seen an official release on CD. Even the mighty reissue label Wounded Bird couldn't be bothered picking this up from the Elektra catalogue for which they had first dibs to re-release it.

It's not the worst album you'll ever hear but considering the quality line-up, they really should have delivered something a whole lot better. If you see it lying around in a cutout bin somewhere, pick it up on the cheap, but for no more than a couple of bucks.


Steppin' Over The Line

All written content on this website belongs to copyright. Duplication elsewhere on the Internet is strictly prohibited, unless specific permission is granted.

Sign In or Register to comment.