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Sunday, 16 November 2008

Mashed In Plastic: The David Lynch Mash-up Album



It's finally here. After several months of hard work and international collaboration, today finally sees the release of Mashed In Plastic: The David Lynch Mash-up Album.

I love the films of David Lynch. The man is an auteur. On first viewing, his films can seem empty, confusing, intangible...it is only when one looks deeper you release the simplicity of the message he tries to deliver - good vs. evil.

Containing a variety of grotesques mixed with the innocent and angelic, he has created some of the most startling and iconic imagery ever seen in recent times on celluloid (or indeed digital media). A hideously deformed mutant baby being serenaded by a fat cheeked girl inside a radiator; a man tragically mis-formed on the outside and yet so perfect on the inside; an ex-Police man with blue eyes riding giant paprika worms in the desert; a gas-breathing sexual psychopath who's every sentence includes the word fuck and has a penchant for vintage love songs and an irrational fear of Heineken; an insane bank robber with bad teeth (and a decent performance out of the irritatingly wooden Nicholas Cage) who ultimately loses his head on so many levels; a murdered girl floating down a river wrapped in heavy duty plastic and a backwards/forwards speaking dwarf with a peculiar love of jazz, rings and creamed corn; a schizophrenic jazz musician living out his own ideal world in the same world in which he murdered whilst a mystery man in black displays bi-location and films on his handheld camera; an old man driving across America on a tractor encountering cyclists and deer; an aspiring actress again lives out her memories/fantasies in an idealised world full of shady film corporates who are particular about their coffess, cowboys, paint covered directors, pendulous breasted hotties and a verging-on-the-shady porno cinema of the 70s vibe music club where everything is played back on tape; and suffocating rubber clown suits. Unforgettable stuff.

But whilst the visuals are incredible, an often overlooked aspect of Lynch's movie-making excellence is his choice of music and sound. Frequent collaborator, and part-time Lynch regular actor, is Angelo Badalamenti - the Italian-American composer who gave us the haunting scores to Twin Peaks, a scorchingly dark soundtrack to Blue Velvet and a suitably Hollywood-esque atmospheric piece for Mulholland Drive. Other contributors included luminaries of the rock scene such as David Bowie, Trent Reznor, and Rammstein. And then there is his love of all things nostaligic from the 50s and 60s, pop songs, jazz, etc.

It is this music that drives this album.

Beginning life on the 21st July, it all began by accident. I'd just posted a mash I'd created named Twin Hearts which I made as a result of stumbling across a collection of Badalamenti soundtracks. The slinkyness of the Man From Another Place's jazz theme with Kylie cooing over the top was enticing enough to get me some great feedback over on GYBO, and various awards on other mash producers sites. I was chuffed I'd managed to receive a virtually universal approval from people I considered to be my peers, but never expected what came next. GYBO posting legend Linus, aka Alan Black started a correspondence between he, myself and The Reborn Identity aka Gavin Burrell, another producer I had long admired and who had been more than kind on some of my previous tracks. Alan suggested, he would like to hear more Lynch-based tracks, if not an album's worth, such was his passion for all things Lynchian. It turned out that Gav was a Lynch-nut too. Whilst never sure if it were possible to create a whole album of material ourselves, it was something that excited us. We threw out a call on GYBO to see if there were any other Lynch-obsessed producers who would like to join us. I never expected any response but the response we received was incredible.

The person who showed the most enthusiasm was Wax Audio, aka Tom. Now some of you may have heard me talk before of my love for all things Wax Audio. The guy is a production genius, producing many memorable George Bush based tracks and an incredible fusion of two of my favourite local bands - Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath. To have a producer of this calibre on board for me personally was a huge creative incentive, and drove me on to find as many musical combinations as I could.

Other high quality producers came forwards with contributions - the incredible G3RSt (my pre-nom for masher of the year '08), french superstar ToToM (creator of fantastically one off acapellas), GYBO superstars Voicedude and RIAA who have produced some of the most consistently good tracks of the last 3 years, personal faves and masters of insane fun and bass The Who Boys, budding new superstar and thoroughly top chap Neiltomo (one to watch!) and recovering melancholic, the one and only Phil RetroSpector. We had ourselves a genuine prospect of actually getting this album made. Scary

And so make this album we did. Gav acted as Director, co-ordinating people across 3 continents to gather and quality check, all the while making his own incredible contributions, making incredible videos for as many of the contributions as possible AND (AND!!!!) beginning to fashion and build the website. The man cannot sleep, surely? Alan became more and more excited at the way things were progressing and so since this was his own idea, why not include him in some form or other, and so he became the writer for the website, a pure stroke of genius on our part since he is indeed a script writer in Southern California! Writing beautiful, witty and intelligent track notes, Alan gave credibility to the creative ideas behind this album. He also wrote all other text that appears on the website, and was invaluable in troubleshooting the website and maintaining the high quality of pretty much everything. He also emails as much as he posts on GYBO and has kept me smiling for the last 3 months or so. God bless you sir!

And another stroke of fortune/genius on our part was to designate Tom as our sound producer. Not only did Tom want to contribute tracks, he also became the audio genius who took all submissions and mastered them in to something beautiful. He took all submissions and was at times, brutally honest on what worked and what didn't, but in his honesty maintained a quality that I believe would make this album worthy of a proper studio release. He also took the spirit of Lynch than oozes throughout the album and made it transcend the normal bog-standard compilation release by creating several segues and transitions between tracks to create a truly cinematic experience. People, this IS David Lynch.

And myself? I made a couple of little tracks and most of the artwork on the site. And sent constantly irrelevant emails at 3 or 4am. Not a very big contribution.

And so, a labour of love is now complete. Gav, Tom, Alan and I have now become known collectively as 1086 Productions - with a view to maybe working together again in the future (maybe months, years, maybe never, but either way its been a gas guys). We have an incredible website, we have incredible music and incredible video. We have something I believe David Lynch himself would enjoy. And I now have some incredible friends around the world. Everyone's a winner.

TRACKLISTINGS:-






1. The Voice of Love is Crying - [Colatron]
2. Blue Rigby - [Wax Audio]
3. Twin Hearts - [Colatron]
4. Heaven's Drive-In - [Phil RetroSpector]
5. Tori's Deranged - [Wax Audio]
6. Something Stupid This Way Comes - [G3RSt]
7. I'll Be There in Twin Peaks - [Colatron]
8. The Pink Jack - [Wax Audio]
9. Lauren's Opus - [The Reborn Identity]
10. Frank's Here - [The Who Boys]
11. The Elephant Connection - [The Reborn Identity]
12. I've Told Every Little Pumpkin - [ToToM]
13. Violent at Heart - [The Reborn Identity]
14. Don't Go All Wicked on Me - [Neiltomo]
15. Eraserhead Serenade - [RIAA]
16. Velvet Dreams - [Voicedude]
17. In My Twin Life - [Phil RetroSpector]
18. This is David Lynch - [Neiltomo]

The full breakdown of each track is available on the website. As mentioned, we also have videos for several of the tracks, the 'Cabinet of Curiosities' containing bonus tracks, wallpapers, extra artwork etc. On the About section of the website, learn more about the creators of this project, including a Q+A that borders on the surreal.

The album is available in two flavours, either as a full length mix in 2 parts - our recommended form of download, enabling the music to be heard in its intended form with full transitions - or as a single tracks in a collected ZIP file.

All material can be found over at

http://www.mashedinplastic.co.uk/

Please do take the time to look around the whole of the website as this is so much more than a download site, and if possible, please do leave a comment on the guestbook page. Please also take the time to visit the respective creators' websites, available from the links on the left side of my site.

I'd like to take the opportunity now to thank all people who submitted to this project, whether included in the final cut or not - you all helped this get off the ground and you made several Lynch geeks very happy with your interpretations of the music and themes. Special thanks to Phil for doing a heck of a job, not only with his inspired music, but his inspired promotion of the website here there and everywhere.

Big thanks also Scott Johnson as always at Ramdom Thoughts podcast for being kind enough to play a couple of the tracks as exclusives and keep the buzz going. And thanks to Virtual DJ too, for getting the word and several glossy flyers handed out to the beautiful people at the MTV EMAs the other week. You're the man!

Finally, a huge group hug goes out to Gav, Tom and Alan - great friends, great minds, great times hopefully to be continued for a long time to come. My 1086 tattoo is in planning as we speak :D

Dedicated to my beautiful friend Angel, for having the belief in my tunes and giving the encouragement needed to keep doing this stuff. And for listening to Brooklyn Sweet Freakphony every single day. Love ya honeybee

At last, it's gonna feel good getting back to the 'normal' world of mash-up.....watch this space....
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