Brighton Magazine

The Brighton Magazine

Selected Brighton Magazine Article

Thursday 25 January 2007

Isobel Campbell & Mark Lanegan: Jekyll & Hyde Have Left The Building

Phone rings, Mr Hyde wanders over and Miss Jekyll, with a voice as sweet as a summer's morn, requests his presence on a song-writing project that will lead to "Ballad Of The Broken Seas, Mercury-nomination and mass critical acclaim.
Lanegan & Campbell : Poles Apart On The Broken Seas!

So it was that Mark Lanegan (Queens of the Stone Age and Screaming Trees) answered the call of Isobell Campbell (ex-Belle and Sebastian) and a partnership that looked laughable on paper developed into one that's been revered both on record and on stage.

Take Komedia last Wednesday. Sold-out signs, a buzz of anticipation and much chatter between fans of two artists as diverse & eclectic as that of a cross-faith meeting on the West Bank.

"Mark and I were interviewed together recently, in anticipation of the Mercury Awards, and he was asked what drew him to collaborate with me," remembers Isobel Campbell, of Lanegan, "He said that there's a darkness to my songs that he loves. The music I love has always had to have an 'edge'. If something's slick and bland, I'm not interested."


There's no introduction, little interaction and barely a smile raised .. yet, from opener 'Revolver' (Lanegan's sole project solo credit) & through the rest of the seventy-minute set, the respect afforded to the pair was bordering on reverential.

Campbell may present herself with an awkward disposition that belies her three album past and one-time band-member status with deftly-melodic Glaswegian indie collective Belle & Sebastian .. but make no mistake, she's as focused and driven as the best of them.

Langegan, on the other hand, stands with hands grasping the mic-stand, eyes wide-shut, and seemingly wishing there didn't have to be any gaps between songs.

He acknowledges Campbell just the once .. a smile radiates between the two and the ambience is pricked and we are briefly allowed inside their bubble.

"It's been lovely, who wouldn't want to be recognised for what they do?" she says, of the reception "Ballad Of The Broken Seas' has enjoyed. "But it's not ever been my reason for doing the things I do. I just want to keep making the music that I want... If I ever want to do a death metal record, something with people screaming all over it, I will do!"


Lanegan briefly left the stage early in the set to allow Campbell two solo numbers, as well as a haunting instrumental courtesy of guitarist Jim McCulloch (Soup Dragons, Green Peppers).

Most of "Ballad Of The Broken Seas' was mined. Highlights being "(Do You Wanna) Come Walk With Me?', "Saturday's Gone', "The Circus Is Leaving Town' and much anticipated encore "Ramblin' Man'.

No goodbyes .. they left as they had entered .. an enigma born of a brilliant spark of an idea.

Miss Jekyll and Mr Hyde may have left the building, but the night, the songs and the memory will linger forever more.


Isobel Campbell & Mark Lanegan's "Ballad Of The Broken Seas' is out now and available from all major outlets.

For more info on Komedia shows visit www.komedia.co.uk/brighton


by: Mike Cobley




Share    

Pic (c) Tony Woolliscroft

The Damned recently celebrated the first ever Top 10 record of their illustrious 41-year career with latest album Evil Spirits. 

British blues-rock prodigy John Fairhurst is gearing up to greet the new year head-on as he blasts out of 2018 with a date in Brighton. 

The streets of Brighton will feature folk tales of the world for the 2019 Brighton Festival Children's Parade next May. 

“In 1993 Primal Scream went to Memphis to make an album with Tom Dowd and the Muscle Shoals rhythm section - that album never saw the light of day… until now,” says Bobby Gillespie.

Ian McKellen is to celebrate his 80th birthday next year by raising funds for theatres, with a new solo show which will play on 80 stages across the UK, including Theatre Royal Brighton.

Soaked in Tom Allen's signature waspish snobbery and self-aggrandising wit, his new show Absolutely addresses the elephant in the room that Tom is still living at home with his parents, because he can't afford not to – in Bromley, Kent: heart of leave voters and Theresa May's Brexit Britain


Brighton charity Same Sky this week launches its crowdfunder for Burning the Clocks 2018, offering exclusive gifts in order to raise £5,000 and help secure the future of the event.

Founded by lead singer and songwriter Matt Belmont, Belle Mt formed during a period of withdrawal from live shows for Matt, where he dedicated himself to songwriting, beginning a journey musically and geographically.
The Barton Family

A couple who met at Brighton Dome have returned to the venue to launch a public competition to name a seat in the refurbished Corn Exchange or Studio Theatre.
(c) Wheatus 2018

It's hard to believe Wheatusdebut album is eighteen years old this year.
40 Shillings @ Prince Albert by Andy Sturmey

Brighton's 40 Shillings on the Drum, who are set to share a stage in Sussex with punk icons, UK Subs, later this month, say they also share the same ethos when it comes to songwriting and live performance.

“I'm excited to spread cheers and queers throughout Europe this season,” says Asia O'Hara, ahead of Christmas Queens visit to Brighton, next month.
AudioActive Patron Rag’n’Bone Man at The Movement Launch

Brighton's new Holler Brewery oversaw the launch of AudioActive's latest initiative in its manifesto to provide a solid foundation for local grassroots talent.

Today, 1st November, the World Of Underworld explodes as the band launch their perplexing Drift series - an epic year-long road trip by the band (Karl Hyde and Rick Smith) in collaboration with Tomato and friends old and new, from playwrights to DJs in jazz and techno to painters and poets.

Archive search

Search our archives for what's on and gone for the best of this city's theatre music comedy news and much more...







Organising a conference or event in Brighton?
See our Brighton Conference section.
Brighton web design by ...ntd