By the time Twin Peaks’ second season had aired and Fire Walk With Me had just begun principle production, Thought Gang had been born. The esoteric jazz side-project of David Lynch and Angelo Badalamenti evolved from the seeds of Twin Peaks’ trademark slow cool jazz and blossomed into more experimental pastures: horizonless vistas of acid-soaked free-jazz, laced with spoken word narratives and sprawling noisescapes. Fire Walk With Me’s soundtrack would ultimately showcase two preliminary tracks (“A Real Indication” and “The Black Dog Runs at Night”) from a full-length album that wouldn’t see release for two-and-ahalf decades. Beginning in May 1992 and continuing throughout 1993, the bulk of the remaining material for the album was recorded in pieces, and dove-tailed into a string of contracted sessions for other Lynch-Badalamenti projects.
In the years following, fragments and working versions of Thought Gang material would make appearances in everything from a Lynch-helmed Adidas commercial to scenes in Hotel Room, Mulholland Dr., Inland Empire, deleted scenes from Fire Walk With Me, and most expansively utilised in Showtime’s third season of Twin Peaks. “Frank 2000” and “Summer Night Noise,” as well as an alternate instrumental mix of “Logic and Common Sense,” would score scenes from season three and aid in defining the show’s distinctly experimental, noise-tilted soundtrack.
“It’s sort of like jet-fueled jazz in a weird way…but it’s all based on stories,” says Lynch. “It’s Modern Music.”
Those two words seem to efficiently capture both Thought Gang’s essence and distinctively genre-less genre. Quite often music that finds release beyond its decade of creation experiences a bit of an aural patina resulting from the process of marinating in the ether of time. Perplexingly, Thought Gang retains a contemporary quality difficult to quantify. Fittingly, the resulting album somehow still sounds “modern” and will continue to remain “modern,” decades upon decades after is creation.
1. Stalin Revisited
2. Logic and Common Sense
3. One Dog Bark
4. Woodcutters From Fiery Ships
5. A Real Indication
6. Jack Paints It Red
7. A Meaningless Conversation
8. Frank 2000 Prelude
9. Multi-Tempo Wind Boogie
10. The Black Dog Runs at Night
11. Frank 2000
12. Summer Night Noise