(Italians Do It Better, out Fri 29 Jun 2018)
According to Jewel himself, he recorded around 20 hours of music for the show and what was left on the cutting room floor has slowly but surely made its way to this collection. For those who loved Twin Peaks and enjoyed the soundtrack then this album is very much a must. For those who haven’t heard any of Jewel’s music before, this isn’t the best jumping on point.
The album is a pretty varied collection of tracks all named after scenes from The Return. The stand-out is a minimal rendition of Windswept that fans of either Jewel or the show will instantly recognise. Beyond that Saturday (Evening) features Desire which certainly adds something to this otherwise ambient album.
Songs like Red Curtain and Red Door are good tracks but even at their best, this is still a collection of unused tracks from an 18 episode series. Jewel already has quite a minimal style to begin with, so when that’s stripped down to be played in the background of a television show then one can imagine how minimal these tracks are. Tomorrow is Yesterday and Sleepless are so minimal it’s worth questioning their place on the album.
It has to be said that this is still good music. While not for everyone Johnny Jewel is a master of production and these tracks, albeit not his best examples, certainly prove it. More than anything this album is just a snack for Jewel fans to tide them over between his last album Digital Rain and the new Chromatics album Dear Tommy.
Those who enjoyed Twin Peaks will likely get something from at least one play through of this, whereas those who like Johnny Jewel may get more. Everyone else on the other hand will likely be left in the dark.