Tag Archive | David Lynch

Video Clip of The Week: Jonny Polonsky, “Lay Down Your Arms”

If Trent Reznor were to endeavor to make a ‘pop’ record in the style of Paul Westerberg, the result might be an album that sounds something like The Other Side Of Midnight, from multi-instrumentalist wunderkind, Jonny Polonsky. Though he is hardly a kid anymore, Jonny’s professional journey is one of the more fascinating True Stories in the music business. He was signed to Rick Ruben’s American Recordings at 21, and his debut album, Hi My Name in Jonny released in 1996, became the most-well-reviewed album of that year (yes, that is a thing). Two decades later, Jonny continues to record and release his own original material, while writing songs for, touring with, and recording with artists as diverse as Frank Black, Neil Diamond, Reeves Gabrels of David Bowie’s Tin Machine, Pusicfer, The Dixie Chicks, and he also played on posthumous releases from Johnny Cash. Wow, Jonny Polonsky is amazing!

The Other Side of Midnight is a couple of years old now, but I just discovered this crazy-stylish video for the track “Lay Down Your Arms” last week, when Jonny sent me the link, and I think it shows a Beatles-esque growth curve not only in his sound and but also his rock persona, and so it deserves some love from the Gig. The video’s desert setting is the perfect place for this song that tells the tale of a long dead love affair from which both sides are still seeking an armistice with regard to what went down, and what needs to happen in order to move forward. Have most of us been there? I think so. Try not to fall in love with Jonny’s aching, emotionally-rich vocal delivery over a seductive, tribal beat, languid flow and a killer ’80s-reminiscent keyboard hook that is sharp enough to draw blood. I dare you.

The Other Side of Midnight (available on iTunes) was written, produced and recorded entirely by Jonny, and then mixed at David Lynch’s Asymmetrical Studios by Lynch’s longtime Collaborator/Engineer, Dean Hurley (Twin Peaks). Enjoy!

Jonny Polonsky Lay Down Your Arms

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Jonathan LeVine Gallery Presents: Mike Leavitt’s King Cuts!

Alfred Hitchcock
Alfred Hitchcock Is a Bird, by Mike Leavitt (All Photos By Gail)

You loved his homage to the contemporary art world in Art Army Royalty; you thrilled to his Star Wars character mashups with Empire Peaks; and now, Mike Leavitt returns for his third solo exhibition at Jonathan LeVine, King Cuts – honoring the artist’s obsession with 16 of the Best Film Directors Ever! And what great show it is!

Orson Welles
Orson Welles with Key Props from Citizen Kane and A Touch of Evil

Great film directors make sacrifices and compromises when creating a movie. They’re eaten by their work and very often their body succumbs to the pressure. In King Cuts, Leavitt transforms some of the most renowned directors into satirical sculptures, combining their physical attributes with features reminiscent of their most recognizable on-screen characters. Standing 18 inches tall at one quarter inch scale, each sculpture is carved from a single block of wood, similar to the way these auteurs might cut a take or reel.

Francis Ford Coppola
Francis Ford Coppola with Thematic Images from Rumblefish, Dracula, and The Godfather

Through his clever mash-ups, Leavitt has created totems devoted to the best story tellers of all-time that explore the role of being an artist and pose the question, is it possible not to merge art and life?

Stanley Kubrick
Stanley Kubrick Wears the Dress of One of the Twins from The Shining. Also Present are References to Full Metal Jacket, A Clockwork Orange, and 2001

Stanley Kubrick Detail
Stanley Kubrick Detail with Alex DeLarge’s False Eyelashes

Similar to the way Kubrick, Spielberg and Tarantino use the camera like a window to gaze out, Leavitt humorously reverts the gaze back to them. Under their control or not, work sweeps over the life of the creator. Their imagery becomes more powerful than themselves and their icons overtake their anatomy.

David Lynch
David Lynch is Presented with Allusions to The Elephant Man, Dune and Wild at Heart

Mike Leavitt
The Artist, (Right) at the Exhibit’s Opening Reception. He is very nice to fans!

Trading Cards Set 1

Mike also made a set of collectible trading cards of each of the Director’s Sculptures, and the back of each one has a little story about each character.

Trading Cards Set 2

Kathryn Bigelow
Kathryn Bigelow, and the card which describes her, below.

Kathryn Bigelow Trading Card

Leavitt is obviously a passionate film buff who aims to elevate these directors as high artists, while also surreally lampooning them with a taste of their own iconic medicine. He explains, I love movies and I love art. The magic overwhelms me. Moviemakers are consumed by their work, similar to the way my own work overtakes my life. Whether a block of wood, a scene ending or film reel edit, every cut takes conviction. Trust in that vision is so powerful that they relinquish their anatomy. That’s why I sculpted their bodies physically devoured by their work.”

Tim Burton
Tim Burton Personified with Motifs from Beetlejuice, Batman and Edward Scissorhards

Installation View
Installation View, Left Right: Francis Ford Coppola, Martin Scorsese, Woody Allen, George Lucas

Mike Leavitt’s talent is just insane. The details of each sculpture are absolutely breathtaking and this exhibit is lots of fun to experience in person. Don’t miss it!

Mike Leavitt’s King Cuts will be on Exhibit Through June 11th, 2016, at Jonathan LeVine Gallery, Located at 529 West 20th Street, 9th Floor, in the Chelsea Gallery District.
King Cuts Signage

James Cameron
James Cameron, Avatar Meets Titanic with side of Aliens and Terminator

Wes Anderson
Wes Anderson Films include The Darjeeling Limited, Bottle Rocket, Moonrise Kingdom, Rushmore, Fantastic Mr. Fox, The Royal Tenenbaums and The Grand Budapest Hotel

Twin Peaks Shower Curtains

Twin Peaks Shower Curtain Scenic

OK, every Twin Peaks fan knows that the series’ first episode opened on the scene of the discovery of Laura Palmer’s dead body, washed up on the beach, “wrapped in plastic” – a plastic shower curtain, to be exact. Now you can think of Twin Peaks every time you shower with these amazing designer shower curtains from Society 6, featuring two dozen different designs, all commemorating the legacy of one of network TVs weirdest dramas!

Here’s one I like a lot!

Twin Peaks Shower Curtain Night Club
Black Lodge Dreams

Plus, the image that started it all!

Twin Peaks Shower Curtain Laura
Laura Palmer

Check out the complete series and pick up one or two for your own home, at This Link!

Thanks to Homes and Hues for the Tip!

Twin Peaks Shower Curtain Night Club
“T” For “Twin”!

Video Clip of The Week: GHXST, “Dead Town”



Hey what’s up, I think I just coined the label for a new music genre: Death Grunge. Has it been taken yet? Find out and let me know, otherwise I’m claiming ownership. NYC based rock trio, GHXST’s new clip for “Dead Town” fits right in with the vibe of Video Clip or of the Week for reasons that take too long to talk about. But what I will offer is that this song sounds just like the haunting soundtrack to 3-minute movie of the same name, and it definitely would have been ideally suited for coloring the oh-so-darkening mood of HBO’s recently completed crime drama series True Detective. “All Night Dead Town.” I love it. Visit GHXST’s FaceBook page at This Link. Enjoy!

GHXST Band

Video Clip of The Week: Weeknight, “Dark Light”



“Dark Light” by the brooding, soulful, electronic duo called Weeknight is like watching a complete film by David Lynch in under four minutes. Weeknight are Holly and Andy from NYC and they pull off the rare combination of pretty faces and real musical talent even when wearing glow-in-the-dark Day of The Dead/Corpse Paint. Weeknight will digitally release their debut album, Post-Everything on Artificial Records on March 4th, vinyl release date TBA. Pre-order the album at This Link Enjoy!

Weeknight Post Everything Cover Art

Miles Aldridge, I Only Want You to Love Me at Steven Kasher

Miles Aldridge Actress #6
Miles Aldridge Actress #6 (All Photos By Gail)

Fashion Photographer Miles Aldridge is currently showing a selection of his Technicolor dream photography, I Only Want You to Love Me, at Steven Kasher Gallery. We declare that this is a Must See exhibit!
Miles Aldridge, Chromo Thriller #3
Chromo Thriller #3

Aldridge’s work is highly controlled with a cinematic effect. His Wikipedia page cites his influences as film directors Derek Jarman, David Lynch and Fellini and the photographer Richard Avedon, as well as the psychedelic graphic design of his father, Alan Aldridge.

Miles Aldridge, I Only Want You to Love Me #1

I Only Want You to Love Me #1

Aldrige’s photography is filled with glamorous, beautiful women, whose perfect appearance and blank expression could be interpreted as passivity and ambivalence.

Miles Aldridge, I Only Want You to Love Me #4

I Only Want You to Love Me #4

Aldridge, however, prefers to define his women as in a state of contemplation, so that we are asked imagine their inner lives. The surreal, David Lynchian context of his photos telegraph the possibility that these dream-like scenarios could just as easily transform into nightmares.

Happy-Birthday

Home Works

I Only Want You to Love Me by Miles Aldridge will be on exhibit through June 8th, 2013 at Steven Kasher Gallery, Located at 521 West 23rd Street, NYC in the Chelsea Gallery District. Gallery Hours: Tuesday – Saturday, 11:00 AM – 6:00 PM

Miles Aldridge I Only Want You to Love Me

Miles Aldridge, Dinner Party #5

Dinner Party #5

Recommended Listening: Matt Boroff, Filling In The Cracks EP

Matt Boroff Filling In The Cracks EP Cover

The phrase “Visual Music” is one that’s rarely applied to any new bands that cross my transom these days. The last time I hauled those words out of the Rock-Critic-Speak vault was maybe in a review of Mercury Rev or Barry Adamson (two artists well immersed in the domain of soundtrack composition), and that was years ago. But that elusive label fits very snugly on a recently released 4-song EP, Filling in the Cracks, from singer/songwriter/multi instrumentalist Matt Boroff – a recently-discovered-by-me artist who, while completely new to my ears, has evidently been making adventurous music for twenty freakin’ years! Wow, who knew? As I learned in a series of email exchanges with the artist this past weekend, even Boroff refers to himself as a “Gold Medalist in the Best Kept Secret Olympics.” I would like to help change that.

A critique of one of Matt’s past recordings, 2008’s Elevator Ride, makes reference to the music “conjuring images of Spaghetti Westerns and sweeping desert landscapes” – and that last sentence fragment on its own should sufficiently compel you to buy / download everything the guy has ever committed to recorded media. But what leapt immediately to my mind when I heard the EP’s title track was “David Lynch Movie”; probably because “Filling In The Cracks” sounds like an eloquent modern hybrid of Angelo Badalamenti’s “Theme From Twin Peaks” and some of that (pardon my French) mind-tweaking shit that Barry Adamson laid down for Lynch’s completely under-worshiped cinematic masterpiece, Lost Highway. Poetic lyrics are all well and good, but when it comes to effectively creating a soundtrack for the movies in your head, it’s all about the sound. With Matt Boroff, there are no compromises in this arena.

Tom Waits’ Swordfishtrombones, Ennio Morricone’s soundtrack to Once Upon a Time in the West, Leonard Cohen’s Songs of Love and Hate, and Portishead’s Live venture, Roseland, NYC are four albums that Matt listened to and was most influenced by while working on this EP, so you can see (and hear) that he has top shelf taste in music to begin with. And in the tradition of one-man band geniuses, he played all instruments on the CD including guitar, bass, organ, piano and hand percussion, with assistance on the drum kit from drummer Little Konzett, who played on all four tracks. (Just as an interesting aside, Konzett is also a well-reputed recording engineer based in Austria, where Boroff now lives). How has Matt Boroff flown under my radar for twenty years? I can’t figure it out.

When you have the songwriting chops that Boroff has, it’s not hard to get four great songs on a four-song EP, but these songs are really good. The anguished, affecting “Garbage Man” features guest vocals by Screaming Trees front man Mark Lanegan (the only other guest artist on the disc besides Konzett), whom Matt met and subsequently became friendly with when he opened for a 2011 gig by Mark and Isobel Campbell in Vienna. “After my set,” Matt offers, “Mark approached me backstage and said very complimentary things, which meant a lot to me, since I’ve been a longtime fan of his.” With their complimentary vocal styles, the collaboration between Boroff and Lanegan is perfectly matched. There’s also a rousing, pub sing-along, “All Going Down With The Ship,” that flaunts guitar work recalling Greg Lake’s acoustic fingering on “From The Beginning.” The EP wraps up with “In Our Loneliness,” which is sort of a reverse love song with amazing, wistful, haunting lyrics. This EP is the definition of “Listening Pleasure.”

But getting back to how it sounds: what ties these songs all together in a bundle of ecstatic transcendence is Boroff’s palette of resonant, brooding guitar tones. Matt explained that the guitar tones on the album engage directly with the space that surrounds them. “I’m more interested in using the guitar as a tool to evoke some kind of mood or atmosphere than I am with this or that particular amp,” he says. “That’s always the guiding principle for whatever the tone ends up being.” Matt used only two guitars throughout the recording; a Fender Cyclone and a Martin acoustic. “When it comes to getting the tones I want to hear,” he continues, “I’ll just keep changing the way I play the guitar until it sounds right to me.” Boroff will often try to mimic the sounds of other instruments by changing the picking position or pickups, and using them in different combinations to emulate sounds of instruments he doesn’t own, such as a dobro or a pedal steel guitar.” Resourceful!

Recommended if you like Tom Waits, Nick Cave, Mark Lanegan or any of the other artists mention in this review, Matt Boroff’s Filling in the Cracks EP is available now on disc via CD Baby (http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/mattboroff) for just $6.00 (what a bargain!), and for download at iTunes and Amazon.com. Like Matt’s FaceBook Fan Page and download one of his songs for free at This Link!

GRADE: A+