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Mark Lanegan Previews Memoir-Inspired LP With New Song 'Skeleton Key'

Less than a year after released his 2019 LP, Something’s Knocking, the singer-songwriter returns with a new album he was inspired to record while writing his upcoming memoir.

Straight Songs of Sorrow arrives May 8th, just over a week after Lanegan’s memoir, Sing Backwards and Weep, hits shelves on April 28th. On Wednesday, Lanegan shared the companion album’s first song, “Skeleton Key,” a seven-minute track that recalls Lanegan’s bluesy Nineties solo output.

“Writing the book, I didn’t get catharsis,” Lanegan said of the memoir and new album in a statement. “All I got was a Pandora’s box full of pain and misery. I went way in and remembered shit I’d put away 20 years ago. But I started writing these songs the minute I was done, and I realized there was a depth of emotion because they were all linked to memories from this book. It was a relief to suddenly go back to music. Then I realized that was the gift of the book: these songs. I’m really proud of this record.”

Lanegan’s collaborators on Straight Songs of Sorrow include Gutter Twins bandmate Greg Dulli, Led Zeppelin’s John Paul Jones, Lamb of God’s Mark Morton, the Bad Seeds’ Warren Ellis, Portishead’s Adrian Utley, Ed Harcourt, Peter Hook’s son Jack Bates, and Lanegan’s wife, Shelley Brien, who co-wrote the album’s “Burying Ground” and “Eden Lost and Found” and sings a duet alongside her husband, “This Game of Love.”

Both Straight Songs of Sorrow and Sing Backwards and Weep are available to preorder now at Lanegan’s web store.

Straight Songs of Sorrow Track List

1. I Wouldn’t Want to Say
2. Apples From a Tree
3. This Game of Love
4. Ketamine
5. Bleed All Over
6. Churchbells, Ghosts
7. Internal Hourglass Discussion
8. Stockholm City Blues
9. Skeleton Key
10. Daylight in the Nocturnal House
11. Ballad of a Dying Rover
12. Hanging On (For DRC)
13. Burying Ground
14. At Zero Below
15. At Eden Lost and Found

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