Wednesday, March 13, 2013

The best duet that's not a duet of all time

Everything Everything's Arc is one of my favourite albums of the year so far - full of surprising twists and exciting hooks - and Duet is possibly the best song on it.

Inspired by Eleanor Rigby, the song is punctuated by the syncopated stabs of a chamber orchestra. In fact, it was originally supposed to be just vocals and strings, but the polymath musicians got a little carried away and added a few guitar licks and a stuttering drum pattern. Nonetheless, it's their simplest, most direct song to date.

When I first heard it, one lyric really stood out: "Of all the dead volcanoes on earth you just happened to wretch and roll through mine". In my mind, the song became a love story between 007 and a Bond Villain. Let's face it, there was always some latent sexual tension in Goldfinger - one could envisage Auric running his spiders' touch up and down Bond's leg after one too many vodka martinis.

Sadly, despite further Bondian lines ("there were acres of screens before me"), singer Jonathan Higgs shot down my theory in flames when I interviewed him in January. The dead volcano lyric was lifted, he said, from Casablanca's "of all the bars in town you just happened to walk into mine."

He added: "It just came to me as a suitably arresting way of setting up a romantic relationship that was clearly in a dystopian, smoke-filled scene; but which was playing on this romantic, Hollywood nature of it but it was in this ridiculous volcano that was erupting."

Ah well, you can't have everything. I'll just have to channel that idea into a filthy piece of fan fiction. In the meantime, here's the video for Duet, which comes out as a single release on the 25th March.

Everything Everything - Duet

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