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“Dark Night of the Soul” finally gets a release date.

click to enlarge feat16_linkous_lynch_burton.jpg
This summer will see the release of the fifth and final album from Sparklehorse, the aptly named “Dark Night of the Soul,” a collaboration between Mark Linkous and white-hot musician and producer Danger Mouse of Gnarls Barkley and Broken Bells.

The star-studded CD lists an incredible roster of performers, including: Iggy Pop, the Flaming Lips, Frank Black from the Pixies, Suzanne Vega, the late Vic Chesnutt, James Mercer of the Shins, Julian Casablancas from the Strokes and film director David Lynch, who also created a book of photographs to accompany the album.

A yearlong rights dispute with record label EMI had put the album's release in doubt. It had gotten so bad that Danger Mouse packaged a blank CD-ROM to be sold with Lynch's photography book, heavily implying that purchasers should illegally download the album. The dispute was resolved shortly before Linkous' March 6 suicide.

The album was a true collaboration: Linkous and Danger Mouse, whose real name is Brian Burton, wrote and recorded the basic music for the album and then sent it to the other performers, who wrote lyrics and sang over the tracks. While Linkous recorded music intended for a sixth album, it wasn't finished and probably will never be released, says his brother, Matt Linkous. “Dark Night of the Soul” likely will stand as his final musical statement.

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