BY LEE ZIMMERMAN
Despite what sometimes seems like a decidedly dark disposition, Mark Lanegan can be surprisingly gregarious. A former member of The Screaming Trees, Soulsavers and Queens of the Stone Age, he’s also enjoyed collaborations with the likes of Isobel Campbell and Greg Dulli in addition to his own outings. His latest effort finds him teaming with multi-instrumentalist Duke Garwood, a U.K. guitarist whose tangled fretwork and varied styles find a perfect match for Lanegan’s stormy and sinister mood spins.
Nevertheless, coming on the heels of Lanegan’s latest release, Blues Funeral, Black Pudding does give reason to pause. The music is even more ominous than usual, particularly with tracks like “Pentacostal,” “War Memorial” and “Mescalito.” And though the sound is stripped down – limited mainly to voice, guitar and unusual atmospherics – the effect is also fairly frenzied and typically creepy as well. Lanegan’s vocal seems even more affected, with songs like “Driver” and the aforementioned “Pentacostal” transitioning into a raspy croak that readily enhances the unnerving ambiance. Likewise, the drunken croak he affects on “Death Rides a White Horse” and the weird funk found in “Cold Molly” skewer the circumstances that much further. If Lanegan remains untamed, consider Garwood an all-too-willing accomplice.
DOWNLOAD: Pentacostal,” “War Memorial,” “Mescalito”