Both Sides Now is an amazing initiative by Brighter Sound which supports gender equality in music. Recently, the Manchester-based charity announced Laura Campbell (UK) and Mari Sainio (Finland) as the selected artists for their first ever Both Sides Now International Commission. After a month-long collaborative process which includes mentorship from Manchester-based solo artist LoneLady, the pair will premiere their brand new work at Manchester’s iconic Central Library on the 21 March. Here’s what to expect.
Once part of the acclaimed 90’s triphop band Mulu, Liverpool-based Laura Campbell now creates sound and music compositions for installation and film. Helsinki’s Mari Sainio, meanwhile, fuses classical elements with electronic soundscapes while composing for theatre, film, TV and orchestra. Like Laura, she’s achieved much acclaim for her music, not least for her debut album Minus 25, which was released on the Finnish label Ranka Kustannus last year.
In an exciting cross-European collaboration, the pair – who had never met prior to the commission – have been tasked with creating a set of original music based on the themes of unity, community and connectedness. As part of the process, they will receive mentorship from Julie Campbell, A.K.A LoneLady, whose vibrant, post-punk-inspired music you may be familiar with. If not, the disquieting disco of her 2015 record Hinterland is a good place to start, with Julie’s unique approach to writing evidenced in abundance within.
After a month of mentorship and collaboration, Laura, Mari and Julie will find themselves at Manchester’s iconic Central Library, and the Both Sides Now International Showcase. The event will begin with a panel discussion lead by Nemone from BBC Radio 6 Music, in which the artists will discuss their creative processes, the inspiration behind their new work and why international collaboration is more important than ever. Then comes a genre-spanning performance in which Laura and Mari’s music and visuals will be unveiled for the first time, before being taken to a European festival in the summer!
Who knows what wild and wonderful music we’re in for, but we can’t wait to find out!