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Johnny Jewel Navigates Away From His Nightmares On 'Themes For Television'

David Lynch and Johnny Jewel.
Rene & Radka
Courtesy of the artist
David Lynch and Johnny Jewel.

Spend just a few minutes with any Johnny Jewel project (Chromatics, Desire, Glass Candy, Symmetry) and you'll find that it's easy to get lost in the dark edges of his velvet production. As it turns out, Jewel is also easily lost in his music, especially after appearing in (and composing some original music for) Twin Peaks: The Return.

"I was about a year deep into recording what would become Windswept when I heard that David [Lynch] was making Season 3," he writes in a press release. "It's been a year since Chromatics performed at the Roadhouse. With disintegrated memory through the haze of television snow, I wanted to share a glimpse behind the red curtain."

Inspired by the majestic weirdness of Twin Peaks, Jewel created six hours worth of material, edited down into the album Themes for Television, which he released today. (This comes a little less than a week after announcing Chromatics' long-awaited Dear Tommy.) With the exception of "Saturday (Evening)" featuring Desire, the 21-track album is an instrumental foray into foggy synths and lounge-jazz dripped in a sticky glaze — it's a soundtrack to a show that doesn't exist, but nonetheless creates a fantastically vivid sets of moving pictures in your mind's eye.

"The project began as a sonic exploration of the sounds I was hearing in my nightmares," Jewel continues. "I wanted to find my way out of the maze by focusing on beauty over fear — like the way the fractured sunrise looks in a dream."

You can stream Themes for Television below, and watch a video for "Red Door," which is just quintessentially Johnny Jewel — a Hitchcock-ian fever dream of leather and stained glass rendered in striking black and white.

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