The Tyburn Tree are a duo comprised of Soft Cell singer Marc Almond and saxophonist John Harle. On February 24, 2014 the pair released ‘Dark London’ on Sospiro Noir Records. Promotional shots for the album were taken in Highgate Cemetery.
The album features songs about the more frightening aspects of the British capital city’s history. Spring-Heeled Jack, The Highgate Vampire, Victorian serial killer Jack the Ripper (in cinema and TV) are represented alongside lesser known grim character such as the Ratcliffe Highway murderer.
The title of the album relates to the infamous Tyburn Tree gallows on which over 60,000 common criminals were hung in huge spectacles of brutal justice. Seventies production company Tyburn Films (The Ghoul, Legend of the Werewolf) also took their name from the ghastly gallows.
“Ex-Soft Cell frontman Almond channels his fascination for cabaret into theatrical songs about the city’s lore. Meanwhile composer Harle creates a moody score flickering with echoes of Gypsy folk, late-night jazz and, for “Spring Heeled Jack”, about the supernatural London villain, neurotic prog rock.” FT.com
“We all know that Marc Almond can sing but it still comes as a shock to hear his thrillingly drawn-out climax to Harle’s “The Arrival of Spring”, emoting words adapted from William Blake with operatic oomph” The Independent
“Harle gallops across his musical terrain with the attitude of Axl Rose. Terrifyingly extreme and magnificently audacious, Harle is a powerful force in British jazz and pop, and has the integrity, passion and vision to challenge listeners” Esquire USA