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We here at Popblerd get so excited about certain albums that we can’t contain our excitement in just one review (have you seen the Van Halen thing that we posted?). Mark Lanegan is such an artist that evokes such a response in some of our writers that one opinion is not enough when it comes to his latest record, Blues Funeral. So here you go with Lanegan Shenanigans (AKA: A few different ways of saying Blues Funeral is the bomb) courtesy of your friends at Popblerd!

 

Jesse: Has it really been eight years since Bubblegum was released? That’s not to say the prolific (and legendary) Mark Lanegan hasn’t been busy. Quite the opposite. The former Screaming Trees crooner has put out no less than six albums over the last eight years under almost as many monikers. Fans of The Gutter Twins, Soul Savers, and his work with artists like Isobel Campbell and QOTSA have a lot to look forward to on Blues Funeral as it seems to be the culmination of all the Lanegan is up to this point in his musical life.

Blues Funeral is the best thing Lanegan has put out. Ever. It’s a range of styles yet concise and to the point musically. There’s an air of U.N.K.L.E. (“The Gravedigger’s Song”) in places as well as QOTSA (“Gray Goes Black”) flourishes and The Gutter Twins (“Bleeding Muddy Water”) somber mood. “Quiver Syndrome” is borderline post-punk while “Ode To Sad Disco” is this fantastic six and a half minute musical journey. Props to producer Alain Johannes (Eleven, Chris Cornell, Them Crooked Vultures, etc…) also for helping to make Lanegan stand out from his peers as he should.

Koomdogg: Mark Lanegan is a national treasure. Or he would be, if people would pay attention. He’s been at it for more than 25 years, and no matter what the situation–leading O.G. grunge outfit Screaming Trees, kicking it old school with Isobel Campbell, or providing haunting vocals alongside Greg Dulli–Lanegan delivers big time.

 

Blues Funeral is no exception, providing him his first solo spotlight in eight years and allowing him to stretch out in many different directions. Lanegan refuses to be pigeonholed and proves himself adept at synth pop (“Ode to Sad Disco”), driving goth rock (“The Gravedigger’s Song”), guitar-driven alt-rock (“Riot in My House”) and tortured blues laments (“Bleeding Muddy Water”). How a guy this talented stays under the radar for so damn long is beyond me. I’m just glad he’s still around and better than ever.

Conclusion: Blues Funeral effing rocks. Some writers on the staff are calling it “The best album of 2012” already. Why don’t you do us all a favor, pick up a copy, and find out for yourself.

Blues Funeral is out now.

Grade: A

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