ARTHUR BEATRICE – Working Out (28.03.14)

Track-By-Track zum Debüt der Londoner Indiepop-Combo…

Dieser Tage erschien das Debütalbum von ARTHUR BEATRICE. Hier sind exklusive Kommentare von ORLANDO LEOPARD, ELLA GIRARDOT sowie ELLIOT und HAMISH BARNES zu den Songs von Working Out – im Original und komplett ungebügelt…


For some reason we knew this would open the album, before we’d even written most of the other tracks on ‘Working out’. The build of tension, classical influences, the group vocals and the lyrics asking for an audience just seemed perfect to kick the whole thing off. Orlando and Ella’s voices are doing completely different things throughout the song, but without either the other wouldn’t hold against the music, which is pretty apt for the rest of the record.


Late never felt it was even going to make the track list until the last minute, at which point it became a strong favorite for all of us. Ella’s vocal is extremely close and intimate throughout, but the change to a group vocal on the last chorus knocks it out of this comfort zone at the last minute. Combining a pretty classically R&B style of vocal with the sparseness of the accompanying production was the main challenge in finishing the track, but it was certainly worth it for the final result!


Midland is one of those song that represents perfectly what we were trying to achieve with the record, as it was the first time we felt we’d achieved the strange space between euphoric and tragic that certain older house tracks seem to get right. Ella’s vocal is fairly melancholic throughout, which makes the last chorus so much of a moment as she flies up the octave.


The rolling monotony of the drums in Carter means it stands away from the rest of the album in some ways, but the house inspired piano and moody vocal keep it from feeling too outlandish amongst the other tracks. The title is derived from a film’s so it seemed right to use ‘cut/uncut’ for the edits, which felt necessary given the subdued intro.


The looseness in ‘More Scrapes’ is a welcome change from what is quite a tight and controlled album, and getting a little more free with the recording process was pretty fun, with the slicing guitar on the bridge, and a day spent hitting bins and keys in the drum room to form a loop that jumps in and out of the drums throughout the track. The lyrics are a little more direct on the chorus, which makes Ella’s delivery all the more affecting.


Interlude was the result of a computer problem, that reassembled a load of parts from an old recording. It sounded pretty amazing in all it’s clumsiness, so Orlando and good friend Dan Rejmer worked on it a little more to polish it into what is on the record. When listening on vinyl, Interlude forms a nice introduction to the second half of the record, whilst also cutting the album in two nicely on other formats.


We struggled with Grand Union at first, because it never seemed to sit quite right in it’s early stages. Much like Late, once it clicked, everyone was really keen on it, and it became the second single from the record. Orlando’s vocal performance on Grand Union gets across the concerns that people in their early twenties may have over the coming decisions that govern how you live your life, which was certainly something that comes with deciding to invest yourself fully in music at an early stage.


Elliot sent the lyrics for the chorus of Singles over to Orlando, who was spending a month or so in Berlin, and the resulting early demo that was emailed back was strangely light hearted in terms of melody, which became a bit of a staple for the track. Offsetting the melancholy of the lyrics with the seemingly trouble free melody and Ella’s blase delivery made for an off kilter take on what can be a pretty worn out subject. The drums throughout show Elliot’s love of jazz, and are formed of a couple of different takes layer together to form a more complicated groove, but the more electronic production used in the bridge serves to take it away from that in some ways.


We were really happy to be able to breathe new life in to Charity, which was an old favourite from our early demos. The new piano that floats in and out around Orlando’s voice and the crack of the stool as he played it gives the new version a dream like quality, whilst also feeling extremely personal. Whilst not being a hugely dramatic moment, the middle Eighth where Ella is introduced stands out as being particularly affecting.


Despite sounding like a mansion set in large grounds, Fairlawn is actually the name of a much less glamorous flat where Elliot first lived having moved to London. It’s fitting that the track has changed extremely little since it was demoed in Orlando’s Bedroom, and the slower tempo serves to pull the bpm down a little, away from the rest of the tracks which are at quite similar speeds. It’s nice to have Orlando on the vocal, as the R&B feel of the rhythm would have normally signaled that Ella would sing it, but it seemed right with the male voice.


Strangely enough, Ornament & Safeguard was just like Councillor in feeling like it should close the record as soon as we’d written it, just as Councillor was obviously the opener. What wasn’t obvious was who would sing the track, and having recorded both Ella and Orlando we decided that they worked best together, which is how it ended up! It makes sense that they would pair up for the conclusion of ‘Working Out’, and the lyrics that tell of some sort of unity in fate are only strengthened by the duality.

Working Out
(Vertigo Berlin / Universal)
VÖ: 28.03.2014


Autor: [ von der Website]Friedrich Reip[/EMAIL]