Gig Reviews

Mark Lanegan – Academy – April 27th 2016 – Live Review

An Evening with Mark Lanegan

Mark Lanegan – the Academy, Dublin, April 27th – Live Review – Words by Killian Laher

Photos by Morgan Q.

Killian Laher reviews the second night of Mark Lanegan’s residency at the Academy.

Row after row of chairs were placed on the floor in the Academy for an evening with Mark Lanegan, which indicated the night was going to have a distinctly relaxed feel to it. The first, brief support came from a young, mopey guitarist who may have been called Lyenn, and as his set wore on, tortured, pained vocals transformed into outright screaming. Narrowly avoiding a migraine, Duke Garwood followed shortly after, looking like he had no idea how he got on stage or what he was doing there. His fluid, silky guitar lines have a sort of ‘make it up as you go along’ feel to them but they are very pleasant, as Garwood reeled off songs from last year’s Heavy Love album, concluding a brief set without a word to the audience.

Duke Garwood - Dublin

Mark Lanegan has become an almost annual visitor to these parts, and a welcome one at that. Joined by Garwood plus another, more dominant guitarist, along with a bass player, the lack of percussion made for quite a mellow set. Lanegan’s music is of consistently high quality, and the set drew from multiple corners of his extensive discography. In terms of performance, he doesn’t go out of his way to engage, he just stands there and sings the life out of the songs. A stripped-down version of One Way Street opened the show, a song which has become his go-to song to open gigs, and understated versions of Mirrored, Low and others followed. Rockier songs like The Gravedigger’s Song and old Screaming Trees track Where The Twain Shall Meet didn’t convince, coming across as strangely… becalmed in comparison to the recorded versions.

It’s to Lanegan’s credit that his recent material stands up with the best of his solo work and subtle, guitar-filled versions of Torn Red Heart, Judgement Time and Phantasmagoria Blues were real highlights. The encore was a little ropey, Driver sounded like the band was just f**king about, while Halo of Ashes edged dangerously close to self-indulgence. However I Am The Wolf got the loudest cheer of the night.

Not a night to convert the casual fan, if you’re looking for stagecraft and banter, this was the wrong night. This was all about the music, which didn’t disappoint.

Mark Lanegan Stares

One Way Street
Creeping Coastline of Lights
The Gravedigger’s Song
Can’t Catch The Train
Holy Ground
I’ll Take Care of You
Where The Twain Shall Meet
Torn Red Heart
Judgement Time
Phantasmagoria Blues
One Hundred Days
You Only Live Twice
On Jesus’ Program
I Am The Wolf
Halo of Ashes


Categories: Gig Reviews, Gigs, Header, Music

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