Trapeze was formed in 1969 by vocalist John Jones and keyboardist Terry Rowley, both former members of The Montanas, along with guitarist Mel Galley, bassist Glenn Hughes and drummer Dave Holland, all former members of Finders Keepers. Shortly after forming, they were signed as the first act on Threshold Records, a label founded by The Moody Blues, and recorded their first album.Trapeze was the only album by the band to feature Jones and Rowley, who left shortly after its release.
Critical reception for Trapeze was generally positive. A review published on AllMusic awarded the album four out of five stars, with writer Bruce Eder focusing particular praise on Galley and Hughes, while noting that the record showed hints for the future sound of the band. Eder described the style of Trapeze as "a much higher-wattage alternative to The Moody Blues", comparing the album to the work of the original lineup of Deep Purple, including Rod Evans.