A covers album that just about scrapes the acceptable
The covers album is often the last refuge of the creatively bankrupt; always a vanity project. Make a decent fist of it though, and it can be your Johnny Cash moment. On ‘Imitations’, Mark Lanegan growls his way through sad waltzes and smooth crooning standards like ‘Lonely Street’ (Andy Williams) and ‘Mack The Knife’ (Sinatra), and brings an intimate tenderness to John Cale’s ‘I’m Not The Loving Kind’. Less successful is the hymnal ambience of Nick Cave’s ‘Brompton Oratory’, which is an accident involving two horn sections. Up there with Cash’s ‘American’ series this is not. But 48-year-old Lanegan is a classy bastard, so he just about gets away with it.