I’ve had a book idea rolling around in my head for a couple years. It’s become obvious that it may never actually be written, seeing as how I’m not much of a writer. It has always been more of a visual presence in my mind, which has made me think it could easily be a film. I am dramatically less fit to make a movie than to write a novel. But films have soundtracks. This is something I can do. And so have done. BEDLAM is a soundtrack to a film that hasn’t been made based on a novel that hasn’t been written.
At its foundation, BEDLAM is about informational decay running parallel with our own sense of place and memory. It is about the struggle for permanence fighting against inevitable entropy. It is about people and places and ghosts and madness and dreams.
While I have labeled this as a soundtrack, it is far from a traditional one. The songs are not actually meant to be sound beds for visuals on-screen. Instead, they are encapsulations of the scenes (or chapters) themselves, of the characters, events, moods, actions, etc.
This has easily been my most ambitious project since the 8 hour album Field Recordings from the Edge of Hell. Where Field Recordings was essentially about creating an oppressive, expansive sense of wonder and dread, BEDLAM has, for me at least, a very specific arc to the story. Finding ways to convey these (admittedly cloudy) images and tones from my mind into sonic form has been an adventure. I’ve tried to provide hints with both the song titles and sounds within the songs, but for the most part I do hope the listener can find their own paths.
Much of BEDLAM was intentionally recorded using techniques to capture the aberrant whispers of noise and grime hiding around the sounds, smearing and stretching the borders. This breakdown of sound fits very closely to the dreamlike state of chaos and decay that much of the story lives in. Another hint.
I hope you enjoy it, and I hope you share it with others.