Removing himself for a moment from the rowdy world of grunge, Screaming Trees singer Mark Lanegan put his best solo foot forward with a set of acoustic dirges. His menacing voice haunts each track as the blues come to life throughout the album. Capturing the melancholy mentality of the Pacific Northwest, his words descend like raindrops upon deep puddles of mud. The undeniable beauty of a song such as "Ugly Sunday" obviously comes from reveling in the mire, something that Lanegan has been all too familiar with as a recovering addict. He finds a kindred spirit in Kurt Cobain as the two join forces to present "Down in the Dark." And his version of Leadbelly's "Where Did You Sleep Last Night" is as charged as ever with pent-up frustration and jealousy. An emotional journey through the pains of life, The Winding Sheet is an album that accurately expresses the candid underbelly of the grunge aesthetic.
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AllMusic Review by Robert Gabriel