In early 2007, David Lynch was the subject of a retrospective art exhibition at Paris’ Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain. Evocatively titled The Air is on Fire, it was notable for being the first major comprehensive exhibition of the avant-garde director’s paintings, photographs and drawings. It wasn’t strictly a visual affair; throughout the entire gallery’s two floors and four rooms, a pervasive, interactive soundscape escorted viewers through the work. That soundscape, which shares the name of the exhibition, was composed by Lynch and his collaborator, Dean Hurley, and it’s being issued for the first time on vinyl by Sacred Bones Records as a special Record Store Day release.

Film icon David Lynch‘s releases for Brooklyn label Sacred Bones include the 2012 Eraserhead reissue and last year’s The Big Dream. On April 19, for Record Store Day, Sacred Bones will add another title to their Lynch catalogue: a reissue of the hard-to-find, 41-minute electronic soundscape The Air Is on Fire.

The piece originally accompanied Lynch’s 2007 retrospective exhibition of paintings, photographs, and drawings at Paris’ Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain, during which the music filled the gallery’s two floors. (The exhibition was also titled The Air Is on Fire.) The reissue will be on vinyl for the first time, in an edition of 2,000.

The Air Is on Fire was composed by Lynch with his collaborator, producer/engineer Dean Hurley. In a 2007 Arte Radio interview, Hurley described some of the sounds that make up the piece: “a large flashbulb paparazzi sound,” “short drum machine phrases,” “brief phrases of machines working,” “dubbed industrial hip-hop,” “characteristic winds,” “punch-presses pitched down,” “train mechanisms and large steel factory samples,” “a steam station,” “high-heel footsteps,” “metal structures that were welded together,” “the train horn,” and more.


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