The Big Dream

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The Big Dream
A signpost with an image of a man being struck by electricity. White text surrounding it reads "The Big Dream David Lynch".
Studio album by
ReleasedJuly 10, 2013 (2013-07-10)
Recorded2012 (2012) at Asymmetrical Studio in Los Angeles, California
David Lynch chronology
Crazy Clown Time
The Big Dream
The Big Dream Remix EP
Singles from The Big Dream
  1. "I'm Waiting Here"
    Released: June 3, 2013
  2. "Are You Sure"/"Star Dream Girl"
    Released: June 24, 2013

The Big Dream is the third studio album by the American film director and musician David Lynch, released on July 10, 2013. It was released on Sacred Bones Records in the United States and Sunday Best in Europe. Consisting of 12 "modern blues" songs, The Big Dream was recorded and produced by Lynch with his frequent musical collaborator Dean Hurley at Lynch's own Asymmetrical Studio in Los Angeles, California during 2012.

Two singles were released from The Big Dream; "I'm Waiting Here", a collaboration with the Swedish singer-songwriter Lykke Li, was released as the album's lead single and the double A-side single "Are You Sure"/"Star Dream Girl" followed as the album's second single. Both singles were part of an enigmatic promotional campaign conceived by Lynch for The Big Dream, which included cryptic video uploads on various social media websites, including YouTube and Vine. Upon its release The Big Dream received warm reviews and was a moderate commercial success, placing in a number of international record charts.


The Big Dream consists of eleven original songs composed by David Lynch and producer Dean Hurley, as well as a Bob Dylan cover.[4] In an interview with Billboard Lynch discussed the songwriting process of The Big Dream, as well as the composition of the album. Describing the songwriting process, Lynch said that "sometimes the lyrics come first but mostly the music is talking to you about how it wants to be, and then the lyrics are born out of that." He added that most of the songs were "based on the blues and start with a jam" between himself and Hurley. Lynch further explained that the songs are "tighter" than those on his debut studio album, Crazy Clown Time (2011), due to increased confidence in his musical abilities. Regarding the Bob Dylan cover "The Ballad of Hollis Brown", Lynch said it is "not really a cover of Bob Dylan as much as it is a cover of a Nina Simone cover of Bob Dylan" and noted that the song was "important for the sequence" of the album."[5]


Swedish singer-songwriter Lykke Li (pictured in 2011) was a guest musician on The Big Dream, performing lead vocals on "I'm Waiting Here".

The Big Dream was released on July 10, 2013 on Beatink Records in Japan,[6] July 15 on Sunday Best in Europe and on INGRID in Sweden,[7] and July 16 on Sacred Bones Records in the United States.[4] It was released on CD, double LP and made available as a digital download. TBD716, an enigmatic 43-second trailer for The Big Dream, was uploaded to David Lynch's YouTube channel on May 31, 2013—four days prior to the album's official announcement—and a six-second looped clip of the trailer was later uploaded to Lynch's personal Vine account.[8]

In further promotion of the album, two singles were released. "I'm Waiting Here", an iTunes bonus track featuring Swedish singer-songwriter Lykke Li, was released as The Big Dream's lead single on June 3, 2013[9] and the double A-side single, "Are You Sure"/"Star Dream Girl", was released on June 24.[10] A limited edition 7" version of "I'm Waiting Here", featuring hand-inscribed etchings by Lynch, was made available with double LP editions of the album.[4]

The Big Dream was a moderate commercial success. In the United States' Billboard charts the album peaked at number 5 on the Heatseekers Albums chart, number 40 on the Independent Albums chart and number 10 on the Tastemaker Albums chart.[11] The album entered the UK Independent Albums Chart at number 20 and the UK Independent Album Breakers Chart at number 2. It charted elsewhere internationally, including the Belgian Albums Chart in both Flanders and Wallonia, France, Germany, Japan and Switzerland.


Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Review scores
AllMusic3.5/5 stars[13]
Boston GlobePositive[1]
Consequence of Sound3/5 stars[14]
Drowned in Sound7/10[15]
The Guardian4/5 stars[16]
musicOMH4/5 stars[17]
Pitchfork Media6.3/10[20]
Slant Magazine2.5/5 stars[21]

Upon its release The Big Dream received generally positive reviews. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the album received an average score of 64, based on 28 reviews indicating "generally favourable reviews".[12] AllMusic's Heather Phares rated the album three and a half out of five stars and noted how it "pushes the blues' boundaries", adding it "uses elements of the genre as a jumping-off point for his experiments" and "honors the blues' lust for life and its lonely heart."[13] Writing for the Boston Globe, James Reed wrote positively of The Big Dream and described it as "a modern blues as filtered through Lynch's warped mind, where life unfolds in the shadows in slow motion."[1] Consequence of Sound reviewer Paula Mejia referred to the album as "a series of vignettes, character-driven narratives rather than a revolution around a certain thematic concept" and said that "the frustrations within The Big Dream lie in the pauses, which require a certain degree of patience", awarding the album three out of five stars.[14] Matthew Slaughter of Drowned in Sound rated the album seven out of ten, said it is "as warped and wondrous a vision as Lynch has produced in recent times, teeming with his usual cast of naïve dreamers, warped killers and femme fatales", summarising it as "brilliant, inconsistent, pleasing [and] frustrating."[15]

Writing for The Guardian, Paul MacInnes rated The Big Dream four of five stars and drew comparisons to Lynch's films, stating "a fusion of blues and early rock'n'roll styles with electronic production techniques, you are dragged into an American wilderness where the land is parched, the sky crackles with electricity, and there's a pair of glowing red eyes watching you from a distance."[16] musicOMH writer Aaron Payne described the album as "a thoroughly decent album from start to finish", noted that "I'm Waiting Here" is "near-perfect addition" to the album, and awarded it four out of five stars.[17] NME's Phil Hebblethwaite noted how The Big Dream's "formula", which consists of "straightforward tracks", "a massive left turn into Weird Town" after the album's midpoint and "a sweet one-two" towards the end of it. Hebblethwaite rated the album seven out of ten.[18] In a mixed two and a half star review for Slant Magazine, Jesse Cataldo wrote that despite it being "undoubtedly well recorded, with a sustained mood and some nice sonic touches", the album "still has a thin, larky feel, briefly amusing, consistently strange, but rarely resonant."[21]

Paste's Robert Ham praised the album and wrote: "What the world is privy to now with The Big Dream is Lynch’s version of the blues. Not just the musical style, but also a thrilling sound that encompasses every shade of its representative color. There's the midnight blue of slow, moody tracks [...] the strange denim tones [...] and a strange bright splash of periwinkle to close out the album."[19] Mark Richardson of Pitchfork Media was more critical, noting that the album had "the same weaknesses and strengths" as his debut album. Richardson added that Lynch "takes musical elements from his youth—the sock-hop ballads of Bobby Vinton, the gnarled guitar instruments of Link Wray, both of which are common in his films—and gives them a modern but still homemade sheen, topping the reverb-heavy dreaminess of the music with half-sung lyrics in Lynch’s distinctively nasally register."[20]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks are written by David Lynch and Dean Hurley unless otherwise noted.

1."The Big Dream" 4:07
2."Star Dream Girl" 3:27
3."Last Call" 3:48
4."Cold Wind Blowin'" 3:49
5."The Ballad of Hollis Brown"Bob Dylan5:12
6."Wishing Well" 3:39
7."Say It" 3:58
8."We Rolled Together" 4:00
9."Sun Can't Be Seen No More" 4:40
10."I Want You" 3:47
11."The Line It Curves" 6:01
12."Are You Sure" 3:46
Total length:50:14
iTunes bonus track[22] and LP bonus 7"[4]
13."I'm Waiting Here" (featuring Lykke Li)Lykke Li, Dean Hurley5:02
Total length:55:16
Japanese CD bonus track[6]
13."And Light Shines"3:41
Total length:53:55


All personnel credits adapted from The Big Dream's liner notes.[23]

  • David Lynch – vocals, guitar, synthesizer, percussion
  • Dean Hurley – guitar, synthesizer, organ, bass, drums, programming
Guest musicians
  • Riley Lynch – guitar (9)
  • Lykke Li – vocals (13)
Technical personnel
Design personnel
  • David Lynch – design
  • David Correll – layout

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (2013) Peak
Belgian Albums Chart (Flanders)[24] 75
Belgian Albums Chart (Wallonia)[25] 139
French SNEP Albums Chart[26] 91
German Albums Chart[27] 61
Japanese Oricon Albums Chart[28] 104
Swiss Hitparade Albums Chart[29] 87
UK Independent Albums Chart[30] 20
UK Independent Album Breakers Chart[31] 2
U.S. Billboard Heatseekers Albums[32] 5
U.S. Billboard Independent Albums[11] 40
U.S. Billboard Tastemaker Albums[33] 10

Release history[edit]

Region Date Format(s) Label Distributor Catalogue
Japan[6] July 10, 2013 2×LP, CD, DD Sunday Best Beatink BRC-384
Europe[4] July 15, 2013 PIAS SBEST61
Sweden[7] INGRID NGRD020
United States[22] July 16, 2013 Sacred Bones Bobkind SBR-109


  1. ^ a b c Reed, James (July 16, 2013). "Album Review: David Lynch – The Big Dream". Boston Globe. The New York Times Company. Retrieved July 18, 2013.
  2. ^ Mejia, Paula (July 19, 2013). "Review: David Lynch's The Big Dream". Time. Time Inc. Retrieved January 27, 2015.
  3. ^ Nolan, Paul (July 24, 2013). "David Lynch: The Big Dream | Music Review | Album". Hot Press. Osnovina. Retrieved January 27, 2015.
  4. ^ a b c d e Minkser, Evan (June 3, 2013). "David Lynch Announces New Album, The Big Dream, Shares Track Featuring Lykke Li | News". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved June 3, 2013.
  5. ^ Graff, Gerry (June 3, 2013). "David Lynch Talk Second Album: The Big Dream". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved June 3, 2013.
  6. ^ a b c "Sunday Best / David Lynch – The Big Dream ::" (in Japanese). Beatink. Retrieved July 29, 2013.
  7. ^ a b "David Lynch – The Big Dream". INGRID. Ingrid & Drella. Retrieved June 5, 2013.
  8. ^ "Video of the day: David Lynch's TBD716". Notebook. MUBI. May 31, 2013. Retrieved June 3, 2013.
  9. ^ Breihan, Tom (June 3, 2013). "David Lynch – "I'm Waiting Here" (Feat. Lykke Li)". Stereogum. Spin Media. Retrieved June 3, 2013.
  10. ^ "David Lynch Unveils First Single "Are You Sure" Off New Album". June 24, 2013. Retrieved July 18, 2013.
  11. ^ a b "The Big Dream – David Lynch: Awards". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved September 14, 2013.
  12. ^ a b "The Big Dream – David Lynch: Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved July 18, 2013.
  13. ^ a b "The Big Dream – David Lynch: Songs, Reviews, Credits and Awards". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved July 18, 2013.
  14. ^ a b Mejia, Paula (July 15, 2013). "Album Review: David Lynch – The Big Dream". Consequence of Sound. Retrieved July 15, 2013.
  15. ^ a b Slaughter, Matthew (July 11, 2013). "David Lynch – The Big Dream / Releases". Drowned in Sound. Silentway. Archived from the original on July 15, 2013. Retrieved July 18, 2013.
  16. ^ a b MacInnes, Paul (July 11, 2013). "David Lynch: The Big Dream – review | Music". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved July 18, 2013.
  17. ^ a b Payne, Aaron (July 12, 2013). "David Lynch – The Big Dream | Album Reviews". musicOMH. Retrieved July 18, 2013.
  18. ^ a b Hebblethwaite, Phil (July 12, 2013). "Album Reviews: David Lynch – The Big Dream". NME. Time Inc. UK. Retrieved July 18, 2013.
  19. ^ a b Ham, Robert (July 16, 2013). "David Lynch: The Big Dream :: Music Reviews". Paste. Wolfgang's Vault. Retrieved July 18, 2013.
  20. ^ a b Richardson, Mark (July 15, 2013). "David Lynch – The Big Dream | Album Reviews". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved July 18, 2013.
  21. ^ a b Cataldo, Jesse (July 11, 2013). "David Lynch: The Big Dream | Album Review". Slant Magazine. Retrieved July 22, 2013.
  22. ^ a b "Music – The Big Dream by David Lynch". iTunes Store. Apple. Retrieved June 3, 2013.
  23. ^ The Big Dream (CD). David Lynch. Sunday Best. 2013. SBESTCD61.CS1 maint: others in cite AV media (notes) (link)
  24. ^ "David Lynch – The Big Dream". Ultratop (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved July 22, 2013.
  25. ^ "David Lynch – The Big Dream". Ultratop (in French). Hung Medien. Retrieved July 22, 2013.
  26. ^ "David Lynch – The Big Dream". (in French). Hung Medien. Retrieved July 29, 2013.
  27. ^ "Album – David Lynch, The Big Dream" (in German). Media Control Charts. Retrieved July 22, 2013.
  28. ^ ザ・ビッグ・ドリーム デビッド・リンチのプロフィールならオリコン芸能人事典 [Oricon Entertainment Encyclopedia – Profile of The Big Dream: David Lynch] (in Japanese). Oricon. Retrieved July 29, 2013.
  29. ^ "David Lynch – The Big Dream". Hitparade (in German). Hung Medien. Retrieved July 24, 2013.
  30. ^ "2013-07-27 Top 40 Independent Albums Chart". Official Charts Company. Retrieved July 22, 2013.
  31. ^ "2013-07-27 Top 40 Independent Album Breakers Chart". Official Charts Company. Retrieved July 22, 2013.
  32. ^ "Heatseekers Albums: Aug 03, 2013". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved July 27, 2013.
  33. ^ "Tastemaker Albums: Aug 03, 2013". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved July 27, 2013.

External links[edit]