Now onto his 10th solo LP, Mark Lanegan has played himself into the form of his career. Gargoyle thrusts the throbbing electronic textures and Krautrock rhythms first heard with 2012’s excellent Blues Funeral into the forefront of his soundscapes, while his tobacco-scorched baritone only seems to get better with age. The record plumbs the depths of gothic electro rock to scape a haughty grandeur that is as hopeful as it is mournful, typifying the notion that Lanegan is at the peak of his creative powers, finding the most delicate of balances between polar opposite semblances easily. His irrepressible, grizzled vocal is the master key to the soul that is often kept hidden behind the pewter façade, and it’s the desire for more glimpses into it is what makes Gargoyle as affecting as it is. For large parts of his career, Lanegan has often shared the limelight by way of guest appearances. His recent work has shown he’s at his fiercest when he’s front and centre.
[FIRST PUBLISHED ON NO RIPCORD]