Mark Lanegan

Mark Lanegan

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Mark Lanegan - Straight Songs Of Sorrow Album Review


Mark Lanegan's prolific output shows no signs of abating as he releases his second album in less than seven months. 'Straight Songs Of Sorrow' follows last year's release 'Somebody's Knocking' and is inspired by his own life and his memoir 'Sing Backwards And Weep' (if this is what he's capable of without being on lockdown then God only knows what's to come in the near future). Lanegan's book, containing detailed and frank recollections of his troubled and eventful life, did not bring the catharsis he was hoping for but it did 'gift' him these songs and he says, "I'm really proud of this record."

Mark Lanegan - Straight Songs Of Sorrow Album Review

Lanegan's fifteen new tracks serve to further document his extraordinary life and in so doing also, quite coincidentally, give a helicopter view of his musical output. There is Alt-Folk to full blown Electronica as well as a signature duet or two along the way. Helping deliver Lanegan's autobiographical vision are, amongst others, Portishead's Adrian Uttley, Ed Harcourt, Bad Seed Warren Ellis, Led Zep's John Paul Jones and Lanegan's wife Shelley Brien. 

The album's opening track 'I Wouldn't Want To Say' follows on from 'Somebody's Knocking' with a clear connection through its electronic composition and perfectly sums up Lanegan's life in one lyric: "Swinging from death, from death to revival". That's not to say that this album is overtly dark or in any way depressing, quite the opposite; it is full of positivity and hope. The string-laden soft beat of 'This Game Of Love' has to be one of the best tracks Lanegan has ever written and sung. The duet, with his wife Shelley Brien, is a genuine thing of real beauty. The layered harmonies sit beside each other so sweetly that they make an irresistible combination. The song is about Lanegan's failure up until meeting his wife, in love, having had every girlfriend he's ever had walk out on him. He and his wife sing this song together so symbiotically, affirming that many things are greater than the sum of their parts. Lanegan has done this before, most notably with Isobel Campbell, so he's no stranger to this territory, but here he has excelled himself: "Don't make me burn like this, I know the art of loneliness, free my soul of emptiness, pull me from the fire."

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Mark Lanegan - Somebody's Knocking Album Review


Mark Lanegan's creativity continues to manifest itself on his latest solo album 'Somebody's Knocking'. After countless collaborative releases, numerous band projects and ten previous solo albums, Lanegan shows that he still has new avenues to explore, new material to showcase and a completely new sound to unveil.

Mark Lanegan - Somebody's Knocking Album Review

Lanegan's latest material is, to a large degree, like nothing he's done before. He may have hinted at the route he has taken here with some of his more upbeat songs on 'Bubblegum' and 'Gargoyle' but they only vaguely prepare you for what Lanegan has done on 'Somebody's Knocking'. It's radically different, unrestrained, at times over the top and completely compelling. 

On his latest record Mark Lanegan has not quite thrown the kitchen sink in but he has plundered a rich seam of beloved musical influences to arrive at a sound that is joyously infectious, theatrically camp and refreshingly energised. His retro-leaning electro-infused compositions embrace his love of New Order and Depeche Mode but even these only give you a partial insight into how 'Somebody's Knocking' was arrived at.

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Mark Lanegan Will Only Make Music He'll Have 'fun' Performing


Mark Lanegan

Mark Lanegan will only make music he will have ''fun'' performing.

The 52-year-old musician has admitted he always enjoys himself when he is in the studio creating new tracks, and he strives to make music he will want to belt out on stage for the rest of his career in the entertainment business.

Speaking to Metro newspaper, he said: ''I just have fun making records that I might want to listen to, if there wasn't somebody else making them.

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Mark Lanegan - Gargoyle Album Review


Up until quite recently, a Mark Lanegan release was a rare treat, but that is no longer the case as Gargoyle marks Lanegan's 4th studio album in 5 years. 5th if you count last year's Houston, 6th if you count 2013's collaboration with Duke Garwood, and just forget about counting if you're talking about his frequent collaborations with everyone from Moby to Queens of the Stone Age. Lanegan has been a busy boy, but the quality never drops - Gargoyle is an impressive addition to a large catalogue of work.

Mark Lanegan - Gargoyle Album Review

There are two distinct phases to Lanegan's solo output: Pre-2012 Lanegan showcases a gravel voiced blues singer making mournful and largely acoustic blues records, the only exception being the phenomenal Bubblegum, a rock album which for all its bluster and excitement was still quite traditional in its approach. Post-2012, the music has become increasingly electronic with the singer seeming to pay less and less mind to the more conservative tastes of his older fans. Gargoyle is a step further into this electronic world of whimsy and dare I say it, Mark sounds like he's even enjoying himself here.

The LP kicks off with Death's Head Tattoo. Those trademark vocals are present and correct, but everything else here is a veritable shock: industrial drum samples back a dirty, groovy bass line. The tempo, for Lanegan, is incredibly high. Track two, Nocturne, builds more slowly but there are layers of electronics and keys swirling with wailing guitars in the background. There's a lot going on here, none of it conventional.

Continue reading: Mark Lanegan - Gargoyle Album Review

Mark Lanegan - A Thousand Miles Of Midnight Album Review


Last year, Mark Lanegan released both the EP 'No Bells On Sunday' and the fantastic full length LP 'Phantom Radio'. 'Phantom Radio' especially garnered Lanegan his highest chart placing yet as well as heaps of critical acclaim - indeed, it featured in this writer's best of 2014 list. It was a fantastic album, full of dirty, bluesy desert lullabies as well as some more electronic, explorative pieces. It was Lanegan at his best.

Mark Lanegan - A Thousand Miles of Midnight Album Review

Now Mark Lanegan is one of my favourite artists and I await anything he releases with baited breath, and, it pains me to say it, but a lot of Lanegan's music doesn't exactly lend itself to being remixed. 'A Thousand Miles of Midnight' is just that though - the dreaded remix album. It compiles tracks from both 'Phantom Radio' and 'No Bells On Sunday' and it is unclear quite who it is for; the Lanegan fans, the electronica fans or the vanity of the musicians involved.

It starts off well enough with Mark Stewart's remix of 'Phantom Radio''s closing salvo 'Death Trip to Tulsa'. It makes perfect sense in terms of sequencing - it's like a dusty reprise to the main album and the remix adds an apocalyptic, sinister and minimalistic tone to the original. This is a good remix: it adds something other than stupid digital bleeps and bloops and squelches that share nothing with the original vision of the original piece of music.

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Latitude Festival 2013 Announce Initial Line-Up

Posted on19 March 2013

Latitude Festival 2013 Announce Initial Line-up

Mark Lanegan

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Mark Lanegan

Date of birth

25th November, 1964

Occupation

Musician

Sex

Male

Height

1.88






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