While their name may bring to mind the hot buttered grease and sweat of r&b of yore, (well at least for this reviewer) Lane-Harry x Ike Campbell are in fact two prodigiously talented young local hip-hop artists who have been punching some serious holes in the Australian musical landscape over the past few years.
With spot-on-the-money rhyming, a smorgasbord of smooth and soulful vocal contributions and a vividly catchy sound template, the guys deliver a definitive and stylistically consistent musical statement in the form of their third record, Youth.
The scope of their musical vision is on the grander scale of sound alchemy, channelling modern, wide screen hip-hop while expertly blending in a smattering of harder hitting, old school 90’s sounds to deliver a textured and dynamic listening experience.
The hallmarks of high grade hip-hop are on display throughout. The word play, while heavy on Americanisms, is creative and engaging, and across its 12 tracks Youth delivers a bunch of tracks ready-made for cruising, schmoozing and telling it like it is in equal measure.
The album features a number of their most recent singles, including the lush Strangers, which is also adorned with sweet female vocal contributions from Sophia Koop. Other recent singles Rendezvous and San Luca also deliver album high points. As a side note, the classy videos for these tracks are also well worth checking out.
Song titles such as Keith Richards and Matthew McConaughey betray a broad ranging affiliation with pop culture. As does the moody Winehouse, featuring a moving vocal contribution from talented local powerhouse, Aquila Young.
The production values are world class, a credit to both Ike Campbell (who also co-produced the album) as well as the studio wizardry of Guy Cooper and his Serotonin Productions’ studio right here on the Gold Coast, where the entire record was engineered, recorded, mixed and mastered. The guys don’t do things by halves, and it’s quite a sobering moment when the realisation sinks in that the album has been created right here in our own backyard.
With Youth, Lane-Harry x Ike Campbell have detonated an impressive slab of local hip-hop that with any justification will continue to bring them to the attention of major taste makers both here and overseas.