DESPITE A FORMER CAREER fronting grunge moodists Screaming Trees, Mark Lanegan has spent the last two decades allowing his inner Leonard Cohen to shine forth via a plethora of fine solo albums and several collaborative sets. His solo trip bears further fruit on September 16 when he releases an album of cover versions entitled Imitations on the Heavenly label.
The album itself will see the man wrap his coffee-and-nicotine stained pipes around material by Andy Williams, Nick Cave, Dave Van Ronk and the Sinatras (Frank and Nancy).
Says Lanegan: "When I was a kid in the late '60s and early '70s, my parents and their friends would play the records of Andy Williams, Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra and Perry Como, music with string arrangements and men singing songs that sounded sad whether they were or not. At home my folks were also listening to country music - Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash, George Jones and Vern Gosdin were some of our favourites. For a long time I've wanted to make a record that gave me the same feeling those old records did, using some of the same tunes I loved as a kid and some that I've loved as I have gotten older. This record is it. Imitations."
The first taste of Imitations comes in the form of this cover of John Cale's I'm Not The Loving Kind, originally from his 1975 set, Slow Dazzle.
“I have tried to cover John Cale before and chickened out, its hard to cover your hero but I managed to get through one this time,” concludes Lanegan.