Lane-Harry x Ike Campbell are a Gold Coast Hip Hop duo. A collaboration between Rapper Lane-Harry and producer Ike Campbell to create Alternative Hip Hop goodness. In the span of three years since they were 19 they have gone from strength to strength joining Queensland label Human Records, receiving acclaim for their music from artists like Lorde, Matt Corby, and Chet Faker; joining the tours of 360, Jackie Onassis, Allday, and Spit Syndicate. Previous releases have gained public notoriety as well with The Jesswar & Lane-Harry EP reaching #16 on the Australian iTunes Chart, and second hit release ‘Love & Terror Cult’ reaching #35 on iTunes.
Thanks to Footstomp Music I got to sit down with them in Brighton Up Bar, Darlinghurst before their first Sydney headline show to talk about their music, artists they admire, and who would win in a fight to the death. If you want the full interview which includes Lane’s love for Courtney Barnett, meeting Lorde, feuding with Allday, and more details on what’s bad about the live music scene, click the player and listen below – the written article is a simpler version of what was said in the interview.
You cite inspiration for high energy shows from artists like Odd Future, what can people expect at your shows?
Lane: We always try to make it as wild as possible. If people are losing their minds and shit that is so cool. The coolest shit is seeing those people at the start of the show just standing there then by the end of it they are like shitting on their hands and throwing it.
Ike: Sort of convince them throughout the show.
Lane: Yeah you win them over, yeah. We always try to start our shows real hype so we win them over by the second song they are all with it then the whole show they just enjoy.
Ike: Starting off a bit differently tonight aren’t we?
Lane: Yeah tonight we are doing a new set that we’ve never done before just to fuck shit up.
Ike: This type of venue could either go hype as hell or really quiet or intimate shows.
Lane: Well we got music that would suit both as well. We have music that would suit an intimate crowd. We also have, like on the 360 tour there was like a thousand people and they were losing their minds.
Speaking of that 360 tour what was it like performing to that massive crowd?
Ike: It’s crazy.
Lane: It’s amazing. It was the coolest thing. It was coolest when we played the Gold Coast, our hometown show. And it was the most packed out show we’ve ever had. But the people that were there were there to see us and 360, cause like I could hold out the mic and I could hear my shit come back to me. The first time that shit’s happened it’s very dope. And crowd interaction just meeting people after the show is very cool, some dude got my signature tattooed on his arm.
How have you incorporated different techniques and styles into your music to really make it your own sound?
Lane: Well if I hear a beat I’ll be like, Ike made that. Something about Ike’s beats they have like a signature sound. Not that they sound similar but there’s just a vibe to Ike’s shit. And with the way I write I’ll try and use a lot of wordplay and shit in my writing. I like to rhyme shit that doesn’t rhyme and make it rhyme. Try and make it sound unique. I want to put out shit that only we could have put out.
Ike: There’s a fine line between a unique sound because you want to put out something that people are familiar with but not so much that they associate it with other music.
Do you maintain your strict boundaries while creating music? Lane = lyrics, Ike = music or does it overlap?
Lane/Ike: It’s overlapping, definitely.
Lane: Ike would be working on a beat and I’ll say what if we do it like this? And I would be writing and Ike would go what if we do it like this?
Ike: It crosses over a lot.
What parts of your personal lives influence your music?
Lane: Yeah I reference a lot of film in the music and lyrics.
Just a big cinephile?
Lane: Secretly, yeah. I swear I’ve seen like every movie. And what’s going on with your beats?
Ike: Making beats, most of it comes from personal emotions and stuff, what I’m feeling. It’s never really influenced by other things. But a lot of the time different sounds and different places often trigger different types of music and I’ll work off that in my mind. Sometimes it’s out of nothing and sometimes it’s completely off something else.
So do you compose it with what you’re feeling at the moment or does your background with the piano and the guitar influence the way the composition comes together?
Ike: It’s a complete mixture. I could sit down for two hours playing with sounds and trying to make or compose an instrumental but nothing will happen. But then I might sit down at my laptop and accidentally come across a sound and make a beat when I didn’t even mean to.
You signed up with Gold Coast label Human Records and worked with Guy Cooper, have you noticed the impact on your production?
Ike: Yeah without a doubt
Lane: Hell yeah. We would be making music in our bedroom if I didn’t know Guy.
Ike: We would be nowhere without him. He just turned up our sound in terms of professionalism.
Lane: He made us sound legit as. And he knows people and he can get shit done. He is a good dude. Ike fucked him.
By the release of your DMT album you got the attention of big artists like Lorde, Matt Corby, Chet Faker, and 360. This allowed you to tour with the likes of Allday, Spit Syndicate, Jackie Onassis, and most recently 360. How did this happen?
Lane: It was so weird, we were at Swinging Safari this venue in the Gold Coast that closed down recently is was our first gig of last year. We were playing and I see Matt Corby walk into this room and he is loving and vibing on it. And then I met him after the show and he is like “my mate sent me a link to your song ‘Open Season’ and I had to come meet you”. And then been mates since then and I think me being publicly mates with Corby gave a push to other artists to say “you guys are doing well and Corby likes your shit” because then Allday came through then 360 came through after that.
I saw a mention about feuding with Allday, is that a throwaway joke or something more? The internet isn’t forthcoming with an answer.
Lane: No the internet has no information on this but what happened was me an Tom Allday were good mates. Everytime he flew out to QLD we would hang out and we opened for him and shit. And then I’ve been a fan of Allday since I was like 16 years old because I think 360 shared one of his first mixtapes and I’ve been following his shit since then. And the thing I liked about Allday when he first started was that no one sounded like Allday. Then that ‘Startup Cult’ album was coming out and I was hearing the shit from it and I would send him shit we were working on. The shit I was sending him he was like “Yeah, that’s not dope” and I was like ok he is entitled to his own opinion. He sends me his shit and I’m like “That is not dope” and he gets so upset and he culls our friendship!
In your opinion, what is the single best and worst thing about the live music scene?
Lane: My favourite thing about live shows is meeting people from the show afterwards.
Ike: That was mine.
Lane: That was yours? How good is it?!
Ike: Even when you play a small show and one 50 year old man comes up and says “You guys are awesome” and that just makes your night.
Lane: When we were on tour with 360 there was this kid in a wheelchair, he was 19. I walked off stage sweaty as in this huge coat. He was like “That was the best concert I’ve been to, I’m a huge fan I listen to all your shit” and I’m like ‘Thanks mate’ and he’s like “I love your look, I love your style, I love your coat” and I was like ‘Dude you can have it’ and I take my coat off and put it on the kid and this kid starts crying and hugging me saying “This is the best moment of my whole life” I was like shit, that was the dopest part of the whole tour meeting that kid.
The bad thing about live music is not enough people are supporting it. My granddad was in a band and he used to say he would go to any club and it would be packed because people wanted to see live music.
Ike: People don’t have an appreciation for live music unless they know who it is. If they see a live band performing they don’t want to stay. Full stop. There is a small percentage of people that sit there and regardless of what genre or who you are, will sit there and listen and appreciate what they hear. Or not appreciate it but either way they are interested in what the person is playing.
Who is your favourite local Australian artist to listen to right now?
Crazy Hypothetical – Should you both be placed in a Gladiator style arena in order to fight to the death:
What weapon do you choose?
Ike: I know what you’re going to choose, you’re gonna choose a dildo.
Lane: [Laughs] I wouldn’t choose a dildo, I’d choose a gun!
Ike: What if my suit was some giant ass robot shit. A gun is harmless.
Lane: So you got some fucking shit suit now? Do I get a suit?
Ike: You didn’t ask for a suit you asked for a gun. What if I said Iron Man suit?
Lane: Nah I’ll choose that Harry Potter invisible cloak, and get the fuck out of there. Ike’s just running in circles looking for me shooting up random shit.
Who would win?
Lane: Fuckin’ me! Ike would get exhausted and die. He would probably blow himself up.
Ike: Alright, victory goes to Lane.
What would be your victory song?
Lane: Oh it would have to be ‘Party All The Time’ by Eddie Murphy
It would play every hour on the hour like when it came out?
Lane: Exactly I fucking love that song.
That’s everything, thanks for sitting down with me. I hope everything here on goes well for you because you have been doing an amazing job with that yourselves so far.
Lane: Thanks, see ya later.