Danish indie/electronic music composer, producer and multi-instrumentalist Anders Trentemøller has been refining and redefining his musical direction since his indie-rock projects in the late 1990s. Through six studio albums under the name Trentemøller, along with numerous compilations, EPs and singles, and approximately 100 remixes for other music acts, he has progressed through indie and post punk to techno EDM and trip hop, cold wave and darkwave, and currently has arrived at a more cinematic and ambient milieu. Live, he revisits many of these genres and more.
For the current tour, Trentemøller the man has revamped his self-named band. The band Trentemøller now consists of himself on keyboards and programming, Icelandic solo artist DíSA (Dísa Jakobs) on vocals and guitar, Brian Batz of Sleep Party People on guitar, Jacob Haubjerg of Sleep Party People and Savage Rose on bass, and Silas Tinglef of 2nd Blood on drums. At the Hall at Elsewhere, Batz and Haubjerg also performed as a duo named Luster, a last-minute support act after Tom and His Computer canceled the tour.
Much of the concert spun on the tracks from Trentemøller’s sixth and most recent album, Memoria, released February 11, 2022. The album is Trentemøller’s longest, featuring 14 tracks, and the band performed more than half of it live, interspersed by older cuts. The newer songs especially seemed tailored for the stage.
The mostly-instrumental performance featured perhaps more vocals than expected, with DíSA provided feather-light melodies to some of the more ethereal compositions. These vocals were sometimes haunting in the midst of Trentemøller’s lusher soundscapes, producing a complex dream pop ambiance. Other pieces were more aggressive, often driven by the undercurrent of Tinglef’s motorik rhythms and Haubjerg’s pulsing bass lines. Throughout the set, however, Trentemøller himself at his keyboards and synthesizers was the concert’s dominant force, matching layers of synthwave with shoegaze, kraut rock and electronic pop.
Trentemøller’s performance demonstrated an uncommon bandwidth, drawing the listener to disappear into the hypnotic soundscapes. Although much of it featured danceable and even headbanging rhythms, the dense intricacy of this entrancing music transcended conventional marketing categories. The concert could be appreciated in both a theater setting and in a nightclub environment. Enter the mind palace of Trentemøller by either portal.