Category Archives: Pressure Off

Daily Duranie Video Review for Pressure Off!

Anyone see any good videos lately?  Anyone??  Anyone??  Bueller?  Obviously, we might have taken some time to watch a certain little video for Duran Duran’s Pressure Off a time or two thousand.  Then, of course, we took some more time to bring you all another of our ridiculous, why-don’t-we-ever-stop-talking video reviews of it!  While we could go on and on here in writing, we won’t.  We’ll just let the video speak for itself…after all, we talk enough for the video AND a written blog.  (Yes, it seems we are always very wordy!)  Enjoy!  snort

Now, you probably want to watch something much more…fun so we thought you might enjoy seeing Pressure Off again for the 38,456th time and then the 38,457th time and the 38,458th time…You get our point!

-A&R

Just Me, I Couldn’t Be Anyone Else

I reiterate that I believe Pressure Off is one of the best Duran Duran radio-ready singles in DECADES. In saying that, I think fans need to understand a few things:

Singles need radio time in order to compete as a hit.

People still listen to radio.  I know, I know… you don’t listen to top 40…you don’t listen to internet radio…you only do Spotify…so on, and so on. Good for you. Here’s the thing: the band doesn’t have to market their music to you and I, because we probably ALREADY BOUGHT IT.  It’s the other 7 and a half billion people (approx!) in the world that they need to hear their music. In order to get it heard, they’ve got to get it out to land radio, internet radio, Spotify, Pandora, Apple Music…etc. etc. Even YouTube! People have to hear the music over and over in order to learn to love it and buy it.

Radio singles are not always the most engrossing songs on an album, and aren’t necessarily the songs that fans are most drawn to.

A lot of times, a song is reworked for radio in order to get it played. Do I need to remind everyone the Kershenbaum remixes for Rio? If I had a dollar for every time I’ve seen a fan say that they love the deeper cuts off of the Duran albums and that they wished they’d play those types of songs live instead of all the hits, I’d be able to afford platinum VIP at every single show and then some! The point is, we’re hardcore fans. I think singles, for the most part, are the tool to get the other people interested. Once you’ve whetted that interest, you are either just going to stick with the surface or you’re going to dig in a little deeper and find the music that really defines the band for the rest of us. I don’t personally think it’s any surprise that a lot of fans scratch their heads in wonder at the singles that have been chosen over the years. Again, if I had a dollar for every fan that thought Falling Down was a poor choice for a single, I’d be rich. Yes, I know that once upon a time Rio, Hungry Like the Wolf, Is There Something I Should Know, etc, etc were all singles that had heavy radio rotation and we all loved them. We were also (mainly) kids back then, and our tastes are what defined what was on the radio. We were the golden demographic, so to speak. Things have changed since 1984.

It is a VERY different world, both on radio and off, in 2015… from 1984.

We didn’t have internet during my formative years, we didn’t have satellite radio, and we certainly didn’t form opinions on bands or videos from watching YouTube. We watched MTV, we listened to land-based radio, and we had brick and mortar record stores to spend hours wandering and listening within. Now we have a 24-hour news cycle, and information is literally at our fingertips. There is no such thing as downtime, from the moment we wake until the time our heads hit the pillow. If you’re like most people, your phone is beside you at the ready, should anything pressing happen at 3am. Nothing holds our interest for very long these days. It used to be that a band could release a single like Pressure Off and then allow it to “stew” for months, getting radio time, having videos up on MTV…and charts would respond accordingly. Top 40 radio played what we liked. I remember stations like KROQ, KIQQ, and even KIIS FM here in Los Angeles…they ALL had DD on heavy rotation, and even when they weren’t playing DD, they were playing music I knew and loved.

The music that you and I listened and loved in 1984 is not music that would get much airtime today on a typical (top 40) radio station.

I don’t think it’s any surprise that just about the time I really stopped enjoying the music on top 40 radio that I was nearly out of my twenties. No longer do my tastes, or those of my peers, dictate what is being played. The band has really had quite a challenge in front of them, trying to get air play in an ageist world where radio has already decided they are not the right demographic. How can they stay relevant and STILL remain true to themselves, their longtime fans, and their musical history?

Do you all remember Red Carpet Massacre? From the first listen to Night Runner,  I was thoroughly convinced that the band was trying incredibly hard to fit into a space that they really had no business owning. I saw them playing Night Runner more than once, and their discomfort was palatable. It never felt like the band was completely comfortable with the music; in turn, I was never comfortable with much off that album (although there are still songs such as The Valley that are outstanding). I remain incredulous that they choose Timbaland as a producer. I still feel that the songs he produced are among the weakest on the album.  I was (and am!) public with my scrutiny, and I took massive heat on a few message boards at the time for doing so. “How can you call yourself a fan?”…”You have to stop expecting the band to remake Rio”…”They are trying to remain relevant, why don’t you support that?”…and my favorite, “Maybe you just don’t get modern music.”  (Maybe not!!)

I can accept a lot of that scrutiny. The band was trying to be a little more urban, so to speak. They took a great risk, musically. They wanted to glean a little of that modern music attitude from Timbaland and Timberlake. Maybe they got what they wanted out of that album, and maybe they realized that while it was a great experiment, they are better off in another direction. I don’t know and I don’t claim otherwise. It’s all part of their ongoing narrative. Oh, and maybe I just don’t get modern music.  Definitely.

The funny thing is, I’ve been reading Facebook and Twitter, and I’ve read and responded to  comments on our YouTube review. (Yes, it’s long. It’s unabashedly Amanda and I. We had fun with it which is why it works!) Some of the very same people who took great pleasure in  flaming me on various message boards back in the days of Night Runner and RCM are among the people that are openly panning Pressure Off…for a lot the very same reasons I knocked Night Runner.

“They’re trying too hard to be on radio.” 

“It’s not intricate enough, too simple. Too plain”

“It’s not a good first single”

“It doesn’t sound like Duran Duran”

 

Some fans have even compared Pressure Off to songs off of RCM in that the band still hasn’t learned their lesson, and continues to try way too hard to create a hit single rather than just writing music they want to write. That criticism would be far more respected (by me) if it weren’t for the fact that some of these same fans openly applauded Night Runner and RCM when it was released.

So about the complaint that Pressure Off doesn’t sound like Duran Duran…I have an experiment to try. Put Pressure Off in a playlist and listen on random like this one here.  (Thanks @expired_data!)

I can accept that argument for a song like Night Runner, at least to some extent because the typical Duran Duran instrumentation definitely isn’t there, and aside from hearing Simon’s voice, there really isn’t a lot to that song that makes it Duran Duran.  In the case of Pressure Off? Listen to Notorious for the guitar. Listen to All You Need is Now for the keyboards and other production aspects. Listen to Astronaut for the clear vocals during the verses, and listen to just about ANY Duran Duran song from 1982 onward for stacked harmonies in the chorus. Those elements, among many, many others, make Pressure Off a Duran Duran song.

Ultimately though, Pressure Off is the first single off of an album that most of us haven’t even heard. Of course it’s OK not to like a particular song – Daily Duranie would among the very last to say otherwise. As Simon himself said on a previous Katy Kafe, they want Paper Gods to be heard by listeners beyond the core fan base. They need us: the hardcore, long time fans, to help bring this album to the masses. We may not immediately fall in love with everything on it, but I’d be very careful not to write the entire album off due to one song. As with most DD albums, I’d guess that the real gems, particular for long time fans, are yet to be discovered.

-R

Video Review of Duran’s Pressure Off

We have often threatened to do video blogs.  Today, we decided to make that threat a reality.  Why today?  Simple.  A certain song by a certain band was made available.  Yes, that’s right.  We finally could hear Duran Duran’s Pressure Off in its entirety.  Therefore, Rhonda and I took the time to listen to the song for the first time together and then did a video of our brief review.  How did the band do?  How did Nile Rodgers do?  What about Janelle Monae?  Do we think it could be a hit?  Will be a hit?  Should be?

In case you have not heard it yet, here are a couple of places to check it out yourself:

X-Box
Rdio
Google Play
Vimeo

Duran Duran also posted that it will be available via Amazon UK and US but isn’t so far as of this post.

On that note, here’s what WE think of the song.  Listen to the song, watch our review and then share your review!

-A

 

Everybody Everwhere…Lyrics to Pressure Off

I can’t remember the last time I had the lyrics to a song before I heard the song. Can you? Delightfully, Duranies…we happen to have the lyrics to Pressure Off, and as you may have guessed, I’ve been scouring over each word since I first read them online.

Yesterday morning, I did my normal perusal on Facebook, only to see that a Genero.tv contest had been posted for Duran Duran’s new single….that-is-supposed-to-come-out-some-time-this-week…named Pressure Off. (it’s now Wednesday. Not that I’m counting…or that I’m at all impatient. Right?) The contest explains that they are looking for a fan to create a “lyric video” to Pressure Off.

First of all, what exactly IS a lyric video?  Is it a music video? Is a video that is supposed to use the lyrics to create a story?  Something else entirely?? Secondly, I am not at all talented in the art of filmmaking. I’m sure that’s not much of a surprise given my previous questions. However, if anyone needs blogs written….you know where to find me.

No matter, I was off to Genero.tv purely because I’m nosey….AND because friends happened to mention that if you registered, you could hear a 38-second snippet of the song. I’ve done a lot of things for this band, and registering for Genero.tv in order to hear a portion of a song we were told would be coming this week is no problem. I didn’t think twice. Once I heard the song (and it still makes me wiggle in my seat, it’s that catchy!), I noticed that the lyrics to Pressure Off were also readily available.

You know I wrote them down.  Since I couldn’t copy/paste – I wrote them out so that I could read them, then I sent them to Amanda, who else am I going to hash out lyric meanings with??

Before we get into meanings, if there really are any to be gleaned from the words…I have to ask about getting those lyrics to begin with. I must admit I am a little surprised we have those, but no song, even though it would seem that the release is only days away. I was reading an article earlier this week that claimed iTunes (UK) would carry the song as of June 15 – but that didn’t happen. Tuesday came and went here in the use with nary a mention, and the song still does not seem to be available anywhere. Yet I’ve got these lyrics to Pressure Off. I don’t necessarily think any harm was done in getting the lyrics early (at least I’ll know the words when the time comes for me to blare the music in my car on the way to the store!), I just have to wonder what strategy, if any, was involved with them being “out there” earlier than the song. Surely The Powers That Be must have realized that by putting them up on the Genero.tv site that fans would undoubtedly put them up for others to see elsewhere.  I think overall, it is probably trivial for fans to have the lyrics to Pressure Off first, but I doubt I’m alone when I say that it seems odd.  It could be that the timing for the single is a little off, or the contest went up early, and I suspect that once the single finally becomes available, none of this will matter.

So about those lyrics:

Stepping out, stepping out, stepping out; jumping off X3
Pressure off, pressure off; pressure, pressure, pressure off

The past is another country
The present will never last
The future it’s still tomorrow
Are we living too fast
Searchlight the crowd I fix on your face
I know it well, but it’s a dream I can’t place
Something is happening to me
Maybe it’s happening to you, you, you, you

Everybody everywhere
Feel it in the air, oh yeah
It’s time to take the pressure off
Everybody everywhere
Step out into the future
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off

Stepping stepping stepping
It’s time to take the pressure off

We’re swimming with the rat-race
We’re running against the tide
And it’s every-body’s business
When there’s nowhere to hide
Searchlight the crowd I’m fixed onto you
There is a way out of this into the blue
Something is happening to me
Maybe it’s happening to you, you, you, you

Everybody everywhere
Feel it in the air, oh yeah
It’s time to take the pressure off
Everybody everywhere
Step out into the future
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off

Stepping out, stepping out, stepping out; jumping off X3
Pressure off, pressure off; pressure, pressure, pressure off

I’m lost don’t wanna be found
I’m not gonna be down be down
Outside looking into myself
Just me I couldn’t be anyone else
Is it bad when you’re feeling this good?
Are we all misunderstood?
It’s fine going out of my mind, going out of my mind, going out of my mind

Everybody everywhere
Feel it in the air, oh yeah
It’s time to take the pressure off
Everybody everywhere
Step out into the future
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now

Step out into the future
Jump off into the future
Step out into the future
Jump off into the future
Step out into the future

As most know, Amanda and I like to read the lyrics and see if there’s really any meaning there. Both of us agree that to some extent, there seems to be a message in there – maybe a reminder not to take ourselves so seriously. Take the pressure off.  With lines like “searchlight the crowd I fix on your face; I know it well, but it’s a dream I can’t place” (I guess if you ever thought the band might recognize you – they probably do, they just don’t know from where! Makes sense, really!)  I especially like “We’re swimming with the rat-race; we’re running against the tide; And it’s every-body’s business when there’s nowhere to hide.”  If that doesn’t sound like life on social media or life when you’re famous….I just don’t know.

On a purely personal note, both Amanda and I felt like the song spoke to us as a good reminder that during that time while the band was in the studio, she and I put FAR too much pressure on ourselves. Taking a break was the best thing she and I could have done. Before I get hate mail, I’m not saying the song was written for us (Um, no.),  I just think there’s a message in there for everyone if you care to listen and hear it.

I really like the message I drew from the song, but I’m curious to see what others may have gotten…and yes, I realize this might be much easier after the single is finally, blessedly released and we’re all put out of our misery.  I know. 🙂  Until then, comment away…and hey, is anyone out there (pun intended!) going to participate in that contest?

-R

Pressure Is OFF now…until Summer!

It’s looking like a mid-summer release for “Pressure Off”, at least at the moment, much to the dismay of fans ’round the globe. Not only did Nick Rhodes mention a July release during his interview with The Daily Mail, but in the most recent DDBlast it would appear that even DDHQ is on the summer bandwagon for the first single off of the band’s new album.

This would not matter nearly as much had fans not already heard from the <incredibly inaccurate> grapevine that the single would in fact be out in May. Many were bouncing around the internet, openly tagging May as the month we would finally hear new music, but alas… We are going to have to continue to be patient and know that on the other side, it is going to be worth the wait.

I would venture to guess that at this point, I am not the only fan on the planet that is tired of the roundabout this band seems to keep us on. I’ve seen more than my fair share of fans worry “out loud” in comments online that they’re tired of waiting, or that they’re tired of being strung along. We don’t know why they’ve decided to wait a little longer. Maybe they’re waiting to do promo closer to the album release. Maybe they’re waiting so that the single release will better coincide with other events…and maybe I’m just making aimless guesses so that people see that it really might not be the fault of the band.

No, it’s likely not their fault, but yes…we’re impatiently ready to hear what they’ve been working on for the past three years.  I can only give a toothy smile and say that we’re listening and cannot wait to hear the final result!

Slightly more curious to me is the question of momentum. Did it make sense to have the band appear at that listening party of sorts at a winery? Your guess is as good as mine…and we can only hope that all answers will be revealed in time. I know I’m looking forward to watching it all unfold in the coming months.

I’m sure that many, if not most fans will be openly forgiving and still pledging their undying love and devotion for this band no matter whether the single is truly dropped in July of 2015 or July of 2020. Durantime? Sure…I think we all get it by now, even if we’re scratching our heads and wondering what is really going on with that hamster behind the wheel at times!

-R