I honestly wasn’t sure I’d cover the new Trentemøller album, because I do
tend to focus slightly more on the ‘very indie’ artists that get less attention elsewhere, But that would be a shame given I’ve somehow managed to cover such a comprehensive range of 2022 album releases so far, and ’Memoria’ fuses together so many genres, Indie, Dream Pop, Electronic, as well as Gothic and even Krautock, it should hopefully be appreciated by everyone.
I had to work out how many albums he’s released, it’s about 6, but that doesn’t do him justice, as he’s produced, collaborated and contributed to so many different releases, and at times in particular over the last couple of years the NMR Indie Playlist always seems to include something that he’s been involved with.
‘Memoria‘ opens with 2 tracks featuring vocalist Lisbet Fritze, a long time collaborator and also guitarist in the excellent Danish trio Giana Factory, who’ve been sadly absent from the music scene for a few years now. I can’t deny that the 5 tracks featuring Fritze were my initial favourites, with opener ‘Veil of White’ immediately absorbing, courtesy of the hazy guitar and electronica, with the soft vocals setting out a tune that floats away into the atmosphere.
‘No More Kissing in the Rain’ steps up the pace, another obvious highlight, shoegaze paradise with the most gorgeous dreamy melody that carries the track along, it is mesmerising stuff. But then he switches to the fully instrumental ‘Darklands’, inevitably darker, and which almost disappears completely into a grey mist at times, it’s a really effective track.
Pre album single release, the excellent ‘In The Gloaming’ continues to create images of misty, grey atmospheres, this time through the lyrics too: “Tears of a silent rain falling, Leading me back to you, Through the dusk, into the dark night”.
The intense ‘When the Sun Explodes’ continues that theme, this time with a krautrock influence, whilst the gothic / punk / noise rock ‘Dead or Alive’ almost feels like the frenzied centrepiece of the album, before Fritze’s vocals take us away again in ‘All Too Soon’, an acceptance of human mortality that appears to mirror the frailties of the Universe itself.
The album concludes with the quite beautiful and soothing ‘Like a Daydream’ and then the inevitably complex and grey ‘Linger‘, an instrumental track that I guess we’re left to interpret ourselves.
At 70 minutes ‘Memoria’ is a really weighty release, and at first listen I can’t deny that I was somewhat lost at the scale and the variation between the ambient instrumental and vocal led tracks. But follow the themes, the images Trentemøller creates, the shades of darkness and light, the intensity in the swirling electronica, the beauty of the Lisbet Fritze vocal tracks, this is a cohesive album that really does deliver something pretty special. It’s well worth the time and investment.