Mark Lanegan & Duke Garwood - 'With Animals'

7/10

Despite both of these men achieving so much in their solo guises, Mark Lanegan and Duke Garwood obviously took a shine to each other while working on their 2013 collaborative album 'Black Pudding' as they now return to continue where they left off. And while Lanegan has obviously been keeping busy in his own outfit since then, 'With Animals' sees the frontman adopt a far more haunting direction, which seems to suit his dark yet rich vocals.

Described as a "spectral and sinewy" release, their second joint record sees them move more into the territory of Nick Cave and Leonard Cohen than anything else. Rather than build a grand spectacle around instrumentation, Garwood lets his talent play a supporting role to Lanegan's poetical lyrics, and allows his prose to become the focus of this new album. Winding and weaving itself throughout, 'With Animals' is a strong and well-conceived collection of ideas that seem to see these two relish in being out of their comfort zone.

It may not have any of the gritty, raw appeal of Mark Lanegan's usual output, but it does manage to seduce and entice on a regular basis. A record you can truly sit down and get absorbed by, we can be sure that these two will be working together again very soon.

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