Just as life was feeling monotonous, The Deer Tracks flew in from Sweden to throw some pixie dust, transforming what would have been a night in with my computer to an evening of audio-visual splendor. The “Northern Light” electronica duo released the third segment of the “The Archer” trilogy last week and has chosen Portland as the starting point of their North American tour. Only discovering their existence couple of months ago, I scarcely had the time to get myself familiar enough with their music to know what to expect. But being a Nordic music-phile, I knew crawling out of my lair wouldn’t be in vain.
Armed with boxes of the “world famous” Voodoo Doughnuts, I found jet-lagged musicians trying to catch some rest before the crowd poured in. Lucky for me, Elin Lindfors and David Lehnberg agreed to be my first candidates for my photo series with doughnuts provided by couple of very generous and kooky guys. Elin chose “Marshall Matters” (plain cake doughnut with vanilla frosting and mini M&M’s), and David picked “Neapolitan” (chocolate cake doughnut with vanilla frosting, strawberry dust and three marshmallows) for the camera. The reasons behind their selections is as unconventional as their musical project. Having once dreamt of being a colorful doughnut motivated Lindfors’, while the resemblance to the shape of a universe guided Lehnberg’s. I did not realize how much a sugary cake ring could shed light on a person until now.
If the doughnut theory has any weight, Lehnberg is the space and time, providing the world where Lindfors could embellish and lure us in. On stage, the songstress with the long blonde hair, almost as pale as the snow, commands the attention. But the dark-haired synth/programmer wizard doesn’t hide behind the machinery. Lehnberg’s asymmetrical hair flapping like the wings of a bird, would at times, steel our gaze from his fairy-like partner. These two singers and multi-instrumentalists are the yin and yang personified.
The Deer Tracks immersed Mississippi Studios in an otherworldly aural experience that could be as endearing as Múm and chilling as The Knife. In the shadows of Lindfors and Lehnberg, the “Evil Twin”, who were dressed in matching black dresses and hooded headdresses, provided the additional keyboards and a drum kit that makes a huge difference in an electronic-based music. From “Lazarus” off of the latest LP, to their fan favourite, “Tiger” from the second trilogy, the quartet seemingly played without a blunder. And it’s not without the effort of the two meticulous musicians, who spend almost every waking hour, honing their craft to create the illusion, that we are experiencing another universe – where a man and a deer can exist as one entity.
To celebrate a successful commencement of The Deer Tracks’ tour, we toasted with my home-infused lavender vodka. Skål!