Merganzer Theatre Junction Grand, Calgary AB, June 23
Published Jun 24, 2016The quietly skilful Merganzer welcomed the first audience members to arrive at Theatre Junction Grand yesterday evening (June 23). Armed with a keyboard, loop pedal and violin, core member Mika Posen invited concertgoers into her world, performing a solo piece involving looped violin lines before inviting a multi-instrumentalist onstage to add flourishes of colour to songs on her autoharp.
Merganzer played from 2015 release Mirror Maze, the title track a calming lullaby despite its unsure lyrics. Synths hummed alongside a simple beat, as Posen cooed with her supple, warm voice. "Songs Without Words" haunted and comforted at the same time, its laboured backing vocals juxtaposing Posen's steady vocal tone, while dirge-like keyboard accompanied the somewhat ominous lyrics, "Sisters in land, sisters in song, holding our hands, now from beyond."
"Broken Telephone" recalled the eerie sounds of Bat For Lashes — as did the use of Autoharp — its lyrics speaking of ghosts and phantom limbs over crackling samples. Although Merganzer may not have seemed a hint insular onstage, they gave the audience an introduction to their intriguing, haunting sound.