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Norman Records

Mark Lanegan & Duke Garwood - Black Pudding

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Black Pudding by Mark Lanegan & Duke Garwood
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(1 review) 8/10

Reviews

8/10 according to on Thu 09 May, 2013

“All of a sudden a great black pudding came rolling down the street, it missed me mother and hit me father and knocked him off his feet”. So sang my grandad on countless occasions during my childhood. The title track of this effort is a little different from that pre-war ditty, being a primarily bleak acoustic guitar rolling folk instrumental number. I have to hold my head up high and say that I have never come across Duke Garwood before but ol’ gravel voice Mark Lanegan is long term a fan of the London-based guitarist and states that this collaboration has been “one of the best experiences of my recording life”.

Lanegan as often seems to be the case in his collaborations is a visitor at the sessions, his voice only appearing halfway through second track ‘Pentacostal’, but is an effective counterpart to the “wheezy broke down blues”. ‘War Memorial’ is a gentler strum, structurally not unlike some of Nick Drake’s bluesier efforts, Lanegan’s voice quite clear sounding for a change although ol’ whiskey larynx is back in fore with ‘Mescalito’ which would be better had it not featured an, ahem, featureless drum machine tapping away.

The guitar playing throughout is impressive ranging from acoustic pluckings to full on bluesy howls. It’s bleak though, particularly when Lanegan takes charge as on ‘Last Rung’ in which he huskily growls over some discordant piano. Not a nice album, but relatively impressive and one which Lanegan fans will need to pick up if you want to hear his voice in a more stripped down location. Garwood appears a versatile and talented guitarist (even veering into Vini Reilly territory on ‘Driver’) and so it’s a worthwhile collaboration though it is dark. So black in fact that even the white bits are black.

Soundclips

Press release

Mark Lanegan has teamed up with multi-instrumentalist Duke Garwood to release Black Pudding via Heavenly Recordings on 13th May. 

Lanegan, never one to shy away from unique collaborations, has previously worked with Isobel Campbell, Greg Dulli and as a member of The Screaming Trees, Queens of the Stone Age and Soulsavers. "Duke Garwood is one of my all time favorite artists," said Lanegan. "Working with him has been one of the best experiences of my recording life." Lanegan and Garwood met a few years ago while playing on the same bill and Garwood was a frequent opener on Lanegan's recent European tour. 

Garwood has often been described in the press as Lanegan's "spiritual cousin across the Atlantic waters." He has been widely praised as a master bluesman, with The Quietus saying "The combination of Garwood's murmured vocals and the sound he gets out of his guitar - which ranges from a rolling, loose finger-picking to shuddering howls of feedback - has a hypnotic effect" and The Mirror dubbing him as "London's leading exponent of the wheezy broke-down blues."

Black Pudding was recorded at Pink Duck Studios in Burbank, California by Justin Smith (Tegan & Sara, The Hives) and mixed by his Queens of the Stone Age associate Alain Johannes.

TRACKLISTING:

1. Black Pudding 2. Pentacostal 3. War Memorial 4. Mescalito 5. Sphinx 6. Last Rung 7. Driver 8. Death Rides a White Horse 9. Thank You 10. Cold Molly 11. Shade of the Sun 12. Manchester Special

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