Chrysta Bell & David Lynch: ‘Somewhere in the Nowhere’

Beating the beat

This is the latest release by Texan model, actress and recording artist Chrysta Bell, a five-track EP co-written and produced by director David Lynch with the musical participation of his closest collaborator, Dean Hurley.

Somewhere in the Nowhere belongs to no other place but Los Angeles. You’ve got the picture at once. It’s late, almost midnight. Choose any day of the week, except Saturday. There’s a woman in a car stopped at red light on Cahuenga Bvld. She’s dressed in beige, with a long colorful foulard laced on her neck, waving softly at their ends over a black El Dorado convertible’s front seat. You might say it’s an old fashion way to exposure by contrast. It’s vintage because it has to be. It’s taste for things that are beyond the blame of time, as complex and sophisticated as the story you’re about to listen. You follow it, as she turns right on Oakshire Dr all the way up to Hollywood Hills… Those words and music become correlating  images of what you’re listening to. You ‘watch’ five moments, or better to say, you complete five notes of an unwritten script with your imagination.

Chrysta Bell’s voice is smoky and dreamy, a passionate singing suggestion that acts, fulfilling the silent images of your mind camera, focused on that mysterious woman who is driving alone through the night, leaving the street lights behind, and entering into the dark. Every narrative passage has the quality of a spoken word travelling, with a special regard of the surroundings. You get into the mood as soon as she begins to speak: an evanescent floating treated voice on vocoder over synths and a tiresome beat. It’s the pattern Dean Hurley gave to Crazy Clown Town, David Lynch’s debut album as a singer, the same that he used on Inland Empire OST, as well as he did with Bell’s first album, This Train. All that goes to lead Chrysta Bell for an outstanding vocal demonstration of ability, changing a well known and barely hinted “Somewhere…” into a deceptive fall “…in the Nowhere”.

This night ride have rushy decisions that sound like burning wheels, up dust on every step down, a texan feeling out of place with slide guitars and tremolos reminding Tito & The Tarantulas. Review mirror is flashing scenes of sex on the backseat, screams for more under the light of the moon and a Brian Setzer’ frenetic swing bop to forget.  You are capturing a state of mind, the one that look for a breath of fresh air, to beat a regular path for just one night, by remembering portions of what it’s been definitely broken up. It’s a secret, probably a hidden life once she had lived, close enough in time to be still intense or coming suddenly from far away to be a self-regret. Those parallels lines are on the blacktop as directional signs, to be chosen in one way or the other. Anyway, it is a sinuous decision between desire and reality to blur loneliness with almost touching memories, to rest in a place where thoughts are only witnessed by stars and that illusion of high beam beating darkness. This place has no location, but it’s full of sorrow and it’s called delusion.

Somewhere in the Nowhere is one more step on Bell and Lynch’s creative partnership. She appeared on Lynch’s 2006 Inland Empire OST, and Lynch co-wrote and produce Bell’s debut album, 2011’s This Train. Lynch might be busy wrapping up the Twin Peaks reboot, but he’s managed to fit in time for a new collaboration with her, a woman once he described as her “muse” and “the most beautiful alien ever”, adding “not only a killer performer, she also has a great intuitive ability to catch a mood and find a melody that’s really spectacular.” She is one of the many musicians (Trent Reznor, Sky Ferreira, Sharon Van Etten) slated to appear in the iconic series’ third season, set to air on Showtime in 2017, among other stars of a monumental cast, which features Laura Dern, Naomi Watts and Jennifer Jason Leigh.

In addition to Somewhere in the Nowhere, Bell is finishing up a new full-length album, produced by John Parish, PJ Harvey’s long-time collaborator. Due out next year, it counts Adrian Utley of Portishead and Sunn O)))’s Stephen O’Malley as guests.

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