“What on earth do you know about Twin Peaks?” My mother nearly broke her neck amidst my announcement of my latest binge-watch. Twin Peaks is a show lauded (and sometimes prodded) for its surrealism, humor and drama-worthy subjects. An overarching tale of a small Washington town, grieving over the death of known teen Laura Palmer, creators Mark Frost and David Lynch teamed up with Showtime and gave fans Twin Peaks: The Return. The show sets on Laura’s promise to protagonist Agent Dale Cooper, in a dream in the famed curtained Red Room, “I’ll see you again in 25 years,” in a town now plagued by something darker and permeating through all within the town.
After a month of watching both original seasons, the film Fire Walk With Me, and the deleted scenes, I was of course late but managed to watch the revival’s remaining episodes with bated breath along with everyone else. Visual art and accompanying music is a reliable way for emotional response and providing information. Throughout the show, elements clearly showed we weren’t in the ’90s anymore. We are surrounded by electronics, a plethora of ways to light a stage, and an expanding demographic (ages 17 to 35) open to new and upcoming acts, more accessible than before.
There were just about 13 artists who made their way to the “Roadhouse” stage (now “The Bang Bang Bar”), and we give you four artists to know: The Twin Peaks Edition.
The Chromatics with “Shadow”
Electronica, Chillwave, and a group with four members out of Seattle, Washington. Their music (featured on other shows like Bates Motel, Mr. Robot, and Gossip Girl) is familiar for those with ’80s nostalgia (and too young to remember, but obsessed with it). Singer Ruth Radelet sings of a person too unfamiliar and a dream of escaping long gone. They were the first group featured at the bar. With at least one character struggling with a crazy relationship and slowly losing them to drugs (and maybe something else), this isn’t a coincidence, but nice foreshadowing.
Au Revoir Simone with “A Violent Yet Flammable World”
Synth, quirky, and smooth. This group based out of Brooklyn, New York showed off their best expressionless faces, instrumentals, and musings (and great harmonies) of a strange world. The track evokes traces of sounds of The Postal Service, Depeche Mode, and La Roux. Definitely memorable and another element showing Twin Peaks in a new age.
Sharon Von Etten and various artists with “Tarifa”
This song is definitely poetry if you listen carefully, over the rising harmonies, guitar, and soft horns. It definitely evokes a bit of sadness and contemplation over that last time with someone you love. Keep it, feel it, and replay it.
Julee Cruise with “The World Spins” (featuring the Chromatics)
A definite return, as Cruise is best known for Twin Peaks’ theme “Falling,” and her melodic sound. This track is a soft lullaby for one of the best dreams you could ever have. A plea for normalcy, and intimacy, in a world that doesn’t wait, the song whispers sadness. This same song had key character Laura Palmer break in tears, as well as other characters, as they felt sadness or realization in their own lives. It was a nice touch to have both a new generation of musicians, and a hailed one such as Cruise, featured on the stage together during the series two-part finale; the pan and fade from dark forest to the red-curtained stage, and the starting melody played. Priceless. It continues to be a personal favorite, as gave hope Laura gets a second chance.
Take a chance and get into these artists, but definitely watch an episode of the Twin Peaks: The Return. As a lover of music, sometimes a scene adds a great touch to a great piece of music. If by some chance, I live the same moment with my mother, asking what on earth I know about Twin Peaks, I’ll tell say I believe the show is about everyone. And if she or anyone doesn’t like or believe my response, that’s okay! Time will be different, but the world continues on whether the answer is, or nothing at all.
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Artists to Know: Twin Peaks Edition: Image courtesy of Au Revoir Simone/YouTube