When I was a teenager I was obsessed with the Twin Peaks TV series. Who killed Laura Palmer was the question that was on everyone’s lips. Who was the mysterious Bob, The Giant and The One Armed Man? Back then I professed to know what was going on and that I understood every last scene. But on watching it again before the third series, I realised I was sadly mistaken. It was twenty-five years before fans had the third season that they’d craved all these years. As a fan I can safely say I was as equally excited as I was confused. Who are the Woodsmen? What is the arm of Mike? What was the whole ‘Got a light’ episode about? There are certainly more questions than there are answers? I would never claim to know exactly what was going on. There’s no denying the mind of David Lynch is an incredibly deep and complex place. The new long awaited series was a complete gear shift to that of the sleepy town in the first two series. Of course much of the new revamp features characters and locations from our favourite fictional town of the nineties, but this time spreading it’s net much further afield.
The music from the original series was a huge part of what made Twin Peaks. The chilled out lounge music went hand in hand with the sleepy town and the strange and wonderful characters. Vocalist Julee Cruise made a name for herself as the lounge singer in The Roadhouse Bar. Her vocal version of the theme tune ‘Falling’ was even a top twenty hit. In the twenty-five years since the last series, the bar has gone up in the world, transforming itself into a popular live music venue. At the end of each episode of the new series, we were treated to a live performance from a host of eclectic bands, from the legendary ZZ Top, to the more leftfield sounds of Chromatics and Au Revoir Simone. The first soundtrack has become somewhat of a classic. The music from the new series is very much a different being, but thankfully it has been put together on one album and will no doubt become a classic in its own right.
Of course the new soundtrack starts off in the only way it could, with the original theme tune, that remains unaltered as the opening music. All the artists and bands keep in with the sound that you would expect to hear in the Roadhouse; chilled, innovative and intriguing. With such a sound it poses the question as to why their are so many fights break out in the bar. Whilst the combined sound of Angelo Badalamenti and Julee Cruise kept things on a level on the original soundtrack, the music from the new series blends together different sounds and genres, from the country vibes of The Cactus Blossoms, the trip-hop beats of Blunted Beatz, and the legendary sound of the bearded rock stalwarts ZZ Top. Julee Cruise reappears as you would absolutely expect on ‘The World Spins,’ a dream pop ballad from 1989 album ‘Floating Into The Night.’
The song that stands out the most from the series was Nine inch Nails’ performance of ‘She’s Gone’ from the ridiculously trippy ‘Got A Light?’ episode. There does however seem a big gaping absence in Hudson Mohawke’s ‘Human’. The music was always going to carefully chosen, fitting into the original feel of the show. There were so many elements going on in the revamped version of the show and the music really falls in line with that, taking interesting and innovative bands, old and new. I’m sure I’m not the only one left completely baffled by the show’s final episode. There’s definitely scope for another series. Whether that will happen or not time will tell, but Lynch has certainly left us with a lot to think about, and a soundtrack that stand up on its own as a great collection of songs. There’s a second album available too featuring the score should Nine Inch Nails not be your kind of thing.