Bands are gangs, with a leader who cracks the whip, writes the words, does the interviews, stands at the front in photos, usually sings and employs a roadie to lug his ego around. That's the stereotype. And of course it's largely true. Eventually, there'll always be a power struggle between the leader and the wannabee (always the lead guitarist) that cracks the once-solid unit into acrimonious factions. Bad news, you might think, but without the tension and back-stabbing and sniping bands would just sit around all day playing pool, spending their dole on cheap drugs and watching Spinal Tap for the nine thousandth time.
But once you've lived that particular dream and been shafted, the idea of being in a band rather than just plain being a band is unappealing. Which is why there's so many one-man bands out there these days. How much faceless technopop have ex-guitarists produced in the spare room with just a sampler, and old PC and some warez? (Clearly, too much.) But there's only so much onanism man can take before the well runs dry and he begins to need someone to bounce ideas off, prevent song title jokes getting out of hand and clear away the Red Bull cans and cheap drugs.
Which brings us to the duo. Two. Forget three, two is the magic number. It's the perfect count for artistic excellence. You can't be a gang of two without looking like you've lost the rest of your mates. (Or never had any mates.) You can't fracture into two separate tribes because there's no-one else to bitch about the other one to and there's never room for both egos round the 4-track recorder, so they're both parked outside. (Probably.) What's indisputable is that duos know each other inside out - the proximity is too intense for anything else. Which means they'll know the right questions to ask each other to get the right answers out.
Which is why we're here. It takes two, baby, just me and you.
*it takes two illustration by email@example.com
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