Friday, 16 September 2016

Ballad Of The Blue Rose - A Poem By Benjamin Louche

Last night I left London and stepped into a Lynchian dreamland. The Double R Club were celebrating their 7th Birthday and put on a spectacular show. A highlight was this poem written by our fuckin' suave host Benjamin Louche. The subject being the mysterious blue rose. I woke up this morning desperate to hear it once again and thought it too good not to share...

Ballad Of The Blue Rose

What makes a rose blue, and what meaning therein?
Grown behind picket fence or worn on a pin,
Can a rose feel sorrow? Can its petals fall like tears?
Can the colour blue hold significance? Can its thorns prick out your fears?

Can they prick your thumbs in warning, that something wicked comes?
Something quite against all nature, something impossible that numbs
all your ability to differentiate between the waking world and dreams?
A thing that doesn't belong, yet ever closer than it seems.

For meaning lies in everything, in blinking eyes, in sour face,
In the thread they used to alter the dress, in Lil walking in Place,
But what secrets use the bluest rose for their habitat?
What secrets? Oh, I'm sorry child, but I can't tell you that.

But if you listen oh so carefully, when the nightsea wind doth blow,
You may hear the blue rose singing, and if you do then you will know...



This poem will be published in Voices In The Red Velvet Elsewhere: Vol 2.
Volume 1 which features more musings, imaginings and perverse prose is available to purchase from The Double R Club's online shop here.

To learn more about the author, visit Louche's website.
For Double R Club news and events visit www.thedoublerclub.co.uk.

Thursday, 15 September 2016

Throwback Thursday Review: David Lynch's Crazy Clown Time

I've been doing a clear out recently in anticipation of moving out of my current abode and into a shiny new flat and stumbled upon some old newspaper clippings from my University days. I used to write film and music reviews for the student paper and when Lynch released his Crazy Clown Time album I jumped at the chance to write about it. I know it's old news but thought it worth sharing as it was such a brilliant album and re-reading the review I wrote, I can't help but notice how eloquently I used to write when I was a student of academia...! I better sharpen up my pencils and try a little harder on future posts!

Peak Performance - David Lynch's Crazy Clown Time

It may seem surprising that film maker David Lynch, the surreal all-American visionary, has just released début solo album Crazy Clown Time. But sound has always played an integral part in Lynch’s films and his varied oeuvre doesn't stop at film and music but also includes a Parisian nightclub, his own signature coffee brand, paintings and sculpture, even a furniture collection. This album has been a long time coming.


Lynch has always emphasised the great importance of auditory aspects of his films claiming that music is often the origin for most of his ideas. He has even stated: “people call me a director, but I really think of myself as a sound man.” Godard-esque unexpected musical interludes are common in his work, as are unsettling industrial sound effects and a mixture of equally stylish and darkly atmospheric soundtracks. Over the years he has closely collaborated with many significant names: multi-award winning composer Angelo Badalamenti has scored the soundtracks of the majority of his films, Lynch penned the lyrics for singer Julie Cruise’s album Floating Into The Night after she sang on the opening titles for Lynch’s hit TV drama Twin Peaks, Chris Isaak shot to fame after Lynch directed his music video for Wicked Games and featured him on theWild At Heart soundtrack and more recently he directed a Duran Duran concert for the internet.

The musicianship on Crazy Clown Time is entirely Lynch, apart from the killer opening track Pinky’s Dream to which Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ front woman Karen O lends her vocals. She sounds fabulously seductive, and its a good way to ease in the sceptics before some of the more ‘experimental’ tracks appear and Lynch’s own distorted vocals kick in. Crazy Clown Time mostly offers a dark, moody, hypnotic blues which is entirely evocative of the Lynch universe. But there are a couple of surprisingly upbeat electro-pop tracks in amongst the more quintessential Lynchian fare, like the frothy Good Day Today, which is already popular on the dance floors of Ibiza.

Lynch’s vocals are distorted and range from a raspy whisper to inane and occasionally irritating whines; at times one wonders if the ‘Czar of Bizarre’ is singing with some blue velvet stuffed into his mouth. His voice, which Mel Brook’s infamously once described to be like ‘Jimmy Stewart from Mars’, is not always pleasant on the ears. Track seven titled Strange and Unproductive Thinking lasts an unbearable seven and a half minutes consisting of Lynch mumbling on about transcendental meditation (for which he is an avid spokesperson) through a vocoder machine.

Crazy Clown Time, like all of Lynch’s work, is not for everyone, yet will inspire and stimulate some, particularly fans. Much of the album feels like the perfect soundtrack to a Lynch film which is yet to be made. Although his first official solo experiment is far from disastrous, lets hope that this is not a permanent leave of absence from what he does best.

Crazy Clown Time

David Lynch

Fat Possum Records

4/5

Saturday, 10 September 2016

The Philosophy of Agent Cooper

Twin Peaks is the most quotable show and we all have our favourite lines. One of my most loved is from who else but Special Agent Dale Cooper: "Harry, I'm going to let you in on a little secret. Every day, once a day, give yourself a present." The scene takes place in the Double R diner and Cooper demonstrates to Sheriff Truman how something as simple as a cup of hot, black coffee can become a highlight of your day. I absolutely love Dale's optimistic outlook and enjoyment of life's simple pleasures and recently I've been attempting to take on his philosophy and make it part of my own lifestyle.


Daily I've been taking the time to consider what present to give myself to ensure that pleasure can be found in each day, no matter how mundane it may have been. This week for example I had some stand out presents such as the purchase of the new Twin Peaks OST vinyl and last night I went for dinner and drinks at my favourite diner after work. But it doesn't always have to be extravagant. Wednesday was a particularly warm and sunny day in London and after work I went for an evening stroll in the park with a friend and we enjoyed a glass of rosé wine brought from home to enjoy whilst the sun set. 


This all sounds terribly happy bully of me (Betty Briggs and her smiley face badge come to mind) but making sure there is one thing, no matter how simple, in your day that makes you think that day was worth living can really make a difference to an outlook on life. Life is at times so stressful, disappointing, unfair and harsh. Finding ways to stop the darkness from seeping in is so important. So, I urge you to take on the philosophy of our trusted Special Agent and if you haven't done so already, give yourself a present right now! On that note, I'm going to pop open a bottle of fizz...

Thursday, 8 September 2016

The Perfect Twin Peaks TV Cabinet

I'm moving into a new flat later this year and have been thinking about things I need to purchase and how I want my bedroom to look. As well as what I need to get rid of to de-clutter my life! I was searching for a small table for my record player and also a neat way to store records and I stumbled upon this stunning media unit from Swoon Editions which would be absolutely perfect for a Twin Peaks fan... Click here to view more photos!


How amazing would it be to sit down to watch Season 3 next year with your television placed on top of this?! A very subtle and stylish way to decorate your home with a touch of Twin Peaks inspiration. I so want to store my collection of Lynch films and books behind those chevron embossed doors...

£269 is not a bad price for a decent piece of furniture but it's got me thinking that it would be really easy to DIY a unit you already own or a cheaper piece picked up at a market. Watch this space... I'm thinking I need a touch of Twin Peaks in the new pad.

Wednesday, 7 September 2016

Twin Peaks OST Release Party

Last night Peaks Freaks around the world gathered at their local record shops to celebrate the release of the new Twin Peaks original score vinyl re-issue by Death Waltz Recording Company. For me that meant travelling from work to Sister Ray Ace in Shoreditch, East London. It was a great little gathering with free cherry pie and coffee and the ethereal Angelo Badalamenti tunes playing on repeat.

Sister Ray Ace is a fantastic little shop with an awesome selection of records. After a terrible journey on the underground to get there, the friendly staff greeted us warmly and as soon as we arrived we were scoffing delicious, warm cherry pie. I dragged my lovely friend Gemma with me (she isn't entirely familiar with Twin Peaks but I'm working on it. And who says no to free pie?) and also met a charming man called Jon from the Twin Peaks Twittersphere. It was a great opportunity to talk about the latest Twin Peaks rumours, gossip and share our opinions on favourite characters as well as predictions for the new season.


Annoyingly we arrived late and missed the cherry stalk tongue tying competition. Apparently a woman successfully mastered the Audrey Horne party trick almost instantly! Clearly lacking Miss Horne's seduction, this is something I have never managed to accomplish myself...

After making my record purchase (£29.99) we left and popped across the road to a street food court called Block where we cooled down in the muggy September heat with a Peroni and gorged on delicious stone baked pizza.

It was such a treat unwrapping the vinyl. The designers, Mondo, have done an outstanding job with the artwork (approved by Mr Lynch himself). It's a very special item for a Twin Peaks collection and I can't wait to see what they do for the Fire Walk With Me release (apparently coming later this year). The vinyl itself is supposed to be the colour of coffee but I think it looks more like mahogany wood... which would also be somewhat appropriate was it the intention. I held it very close to the light and could just about read a secret message inscribed running in a circular loop in the middle: "I have no idea where this will lead us but I have a feeling it will be a place both wonderful and strange."

It was a damn fine evening and I urge you to go out and purchase this beautifully crafted vinyl. Having just inherited my dad's record player this is the first record I have ever purchased myself and it couldn't be more perfect. On my way home from the listening party I spotted these enormous chevron patterns on a wall across the street. Is it just me or do you also see Twin Peaks symbolism absolutely everywhere? Spooky...