Together: Trentemoller @ Royale, 4.25.11

by David Tschiegg (Graphic Design), published May 4th 2011

photos by Andrew Swartz (Music Industry)

After a week of back to back events, mainly late night DJ sets, it was a nice change to see Danish producer Trentemøller with a live band to celebrate the 2011 Together festival’s end ‘€“ with nothing short of a bang. Backed with a full band and mechanized visuals, Trentemøller proved to fans and seasoned Together-goers why he deserved the festival’s closing spot.

The lights inside the Royale were dimmed to a deep purple. People were lingering at bars and mingling on the dance floor while Coralcola, stationed in the stage left balcony, spinned an atmospheric set consisting of minimal techno and hints of UK garage. The set complimented the mood of the venue as people trickled in and positioned themselves for the evening ahead.

The music faded and a spotlight brought everyone’s attention to center stage. ‘€œHello my name is Dorit Chrysler and I play the theremin,’€ were the first words shared with audience from the opener. Now I’ve never had the opportunity to play with a theremin, or even see someone perform with one, but Chrysler made it seem effortless.

Over a light layering of strings, piano and chimes, Chrysler swept her hands back and forth across the dual antennas as she opened with song, ‘€œSaint-Seans’ Aquarium.’€ The song had a classical feel to it. The melody emitted by the theremin weaved in and out of recurring harp-like piano notes. The rest of Chrysler’s half hour set consisted of spooky tunes with ear piercing tremolos. Chrysler sang on a decent number of tracks, subtly complimenting the grandeur of her Theremin playing. The way she controlled the instrument’s frequencies, and the effects she put on them, proved to be an eerily captivatingly performance. I would recommend anyone who is interested in the theremin to check out Dorit Chrysler’s music.

It was now time for the main act, Trentemøller. Lining the front and back perimeter of the stage were a series of fabric-slatted screens that projected up ten feet from the floor. The group of three in the front were set up to shroud the band before they entered the stage. Two inch gaps between fabric were collectively enough to see what was happening behind the screens. It provided for a cool effect, especially when light shone from back of the stage outwards. The same fabric was dangled from metal poles around the stage.

The full band consisted of electric guitar, bass, keys, theremin, drums and assorted percussion. At the helm was Andres Trentemøller with an assortment of instruments to bang, knobs to turn and buttons to push. On a few tracks, vocals were provided by some of the female performers; on “…Even Though You’re With Another Girl,” it was Josephine Phillip (of the recorded version) singing. The full sound of the band definitely energized Trentemøller’s recorded music; I wasn’t expecting myself to be jumping and dancing around after the first couple songs.

The band played a good balance of music off albums The Last Resort and Into the Great Wide Yonder. The first half of the non-stop set came to a lull during song “Miss You.” Members of the band took off from the stage as Andres Trentemøller stayed behind to carry the song forward. The audience, including my sweaty self, was quieted for a rather long moment to listen to the tranquil beats and hear Andres play the accompanying glockenspiel part. Soon enough, the band joined him back on stage, bringing the crowd to a familiar ecstasy as the opening chords to “Silver Surfer, Ghost Rider Go!” reverberated throughout the club.

A solid ending to a great week. A tip of my hat definitely goes to the folks of Together. Excellent job bringing a diverse selection of local and national talent along with an armada of backing panels, discussions, exhibits, demos, competitions and much more. I’m looking forward to all of the supporting events throughout the coming year and the 2012 Together festival.

Below are videos of Dorit Chrysler live at a festival and a snippet of Trentemøller’s performance at the Royale. You can check out more photos of the show here.

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