Monday, December 15, 2008

Isobel Campbell & Mark Lanegan review on JC Report

Put A Record On: Isobel Campbell & Mark Lanegan Keep Us In Mind
December 15th, 2008 | Global

Isobel Campbell and Mark Lanegan are on a creative roll. Their new EP Keep Me In Mind Sweetheart is their second release of the year and remains as beautiful as anything else they've recorded. It comes as no surprise that these are seasoned musicians, but their previous efforts are suitably impressive: Campbell, a Scottish singer/songwriter, is best known as one half of Belle & Sebastian, while Lanegan formerly fronted rock band Screaming Trees.

The pairing is as perfect as it is unexpected—joining the ranks of other odd-ball musical collaborations such as last year's critically acclaimed Raising Sand by Led Zeppelin singer Robert Plant and American country artist Alison Krauss.

Keep Me In Mind Sweetheart follows the release of Sunday at Devil Dirt earlier this year, but it's definitely not leftover material. The six-track EP has a warmer and friendlier approach, and is often based around a single acoustic guitar. Lanegan's dark baritone provides a perfect Johnny Cash-esque sound on the title track, while they both show excellent form on "Fight Fire With Fire," as Lanegan playfully flirts with Campbell's distinct style. "Violin Tango" is, unsurprisingly, an instrumental ode to, and by, a violin. If they continue at this tempo and maintain such quality, we'll be in for a treat next year as well.

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—David Hellqvist

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