Watch Sarah Lipstate perform Twin Peaks theme on solo guitar

Sarah Lipstate
(Image credit: Sarah Lipstate / Twitter)

Sarah Lipstate, aka Noveller, has taken a walk in the woods with her Fender Jazzmaster and entered the Black Lodge for a special solo performance of the Twin Peaks theme, Falling.

Arranged by Arrigo Martelli for a solo electric guitar, with a Walrus Mako Series R1 and Demedash Effects T-120 Deluxe V2 Videotape Echo for added ambience, the LA-based guitarist and Iggy Pop collaborator performs Angelo Badalamenti’s piece from the comfort of Special Agent Dale Cooper’s chair, framed by red drapes and the black-and-white zig-zag flooring of David Lynch’s surrealist netherworld, the Black Lodge. 

Comfort might be the wrong word for anything to do with the Black Lodge, where its inhabitants’ speech is reversed and waking nightmares are augmented by the flash of strobe lighting. Even the offer of a cup of coffee is made sinister there. But then this was the exact same chair that Kyle MacLachlan sat in when shooting the show, and that’s pretty cool.

Lipstate also recorded an alternate take of Falling, the Red Room Remix, in which she adds a MXR Clone looper pedal to her signal path and dials up the ambience.

More recently, Lipstate uploaded another solo cover of Laura Palmer’s Theme, swapping out the T-120 Deluxe for EarthQuaker Devices’ Astral Destiny octave reverb pedal

Again, Martelli’s arrangement is performed fingerstyle, with Lipstate’s masterly command of ambience and tone capturing the essence of a track that would haunt you to the bone.

Twin Peaks was an epochal moment for pop-culture. Created by David Lynch and Mark Frost, it was at the vanguard of a new wave of prestige television, presenting elements of noir, horror, soap opera and comedy and binding them together with dream logic. 

But Badalamenti’s score alone is worthy of study. Like the show, it has a strange magic, existing outside of time, shifting moods from light to dark. Its soaring key pads offered ethereal counterpoint to the Duane Eddy-inspired guitar parts, and some of the greatest rock ’n’ roll guitar tones on record.

Lipstate released these performances in a limited edition vinyl run that has sadly sold out, but she has made these performances available on the Noveller Bandcamp page. With two covers and a reworked version of Falling, fingers crossed we see her release a full-length Twin Peaks-inspired album. That would be too dreamy.

Jonathan Horsley

Jonathan Horsley has been writing about guitars and guitar culture since 2005, playing them since 1990, and regularly contributes to MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitar World. He uses Jazz III nylon picks, 10s during the week, 9s at the weekend, and shamefully still struggles with rhythm figure one of Van Halen’s Panama.