Formed from the notion of opposites coming together to complete perfect wholes, the name Arthur Beatrice recalls emergence, rather than memories of Golden Girls.
It seems vital then that the two monikers be male and female, and begin with the letters A and B – like two sides of a record, or the genders, they are unique, but find unison in one another. A truism that extends to Arthur Beatrice’s two distinct, dual vocals.
Founding members Orlando Leopard (vocals/instruments) and Elliot Barnes (drums) discovered early in their school-formed friendship, and musical partnership, that their opposing views would take them in interesting and often unpredictable directions. The pair were looking to introduce a new dynamic to their songwriting when they met and enlisted Ella Girardot (vocals/keys), after hearing her perform All Saints’ Pure Shores in the school talent contest. Brother Hamish Barnes (vocals/bass/guitar) joined a little later, quickly providing another point of creative tension when he began contributing songs that soon became as vital as anything before.
“When a person pulls one way, and another pulls in a completely different direction, it’s possible to find something in the middle without compromising… something a lot more interesting,” is the way Orlando sees the process, and this core idea of creation from conflict is intrinsic to the band’s writing; each member bringing their own ideas to the rest to be shaped by their differing input. It’s not a typical approach, with Elliot’s words interpreted and made real in different voices, through Orlando and Ella, but it works, and while the drummer may write with individual intention, the actual words are deliberately open to interpretation by both singer and listener.
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