Look Into the Future…Don’t Be Afraid

Duran Duran is back in the studio.  Those are, generally, music to my ears.  In fact, it might be my second favorite phrase after, “Duran Duran is on tour.”  🙂  This week, we have seen some evidence of that in the form of tweets.  Two days ago, Simon tweeted a picture of a computer screen with obvious music being made.  Then, a day ago Duran Duran tweeted again an excerpt from the Katy Kafe with Simon when he talked about returning to the studio.  In this clip, he mentioned about how things didn’t do quite how they were supposed to, as typical of first days.  Yet, there is hope as Roger is a fabulous drummer, John plays bass like a *****, Nick plays keyboards well, Dom plays a killer guitar and Simon can sing.  Also, Mark Ronson shared a picture of Roger Taylor behind his drum kit.  Dom didn’t stay out of the action either as he tweeted that it has been a productive couple of weeks in the studio for Duran and Mark.  Then, yesterday, another Duran tweet about how more pictures will be shown from the studio next week.

On top of all these official tweets were the responses from the fans I saw.  All of the ones I saw were positive.  (Of course, there might have been less than positive ones that I just didn’t see.)  Some people were just excited to see the pictures.  I get this.  While, of course, many fans do like to look at the band members and I’m sure that’s part of it, I also think seeing the picture makes it so much more real.  After all, we all know that words on twitter do not prove anything.  Pictures do something else that words can’t always do.  They can really show body language and give a deeper sense as to how the person(s) is (are) doing and feeling.  That picture of Roger, for example, shows him with a slight smile on his face, which is great!  Judge yourself–go here to look.  Thus, am I thrilled that we might get more pictures next week?  Of course, I am! 

Other fans are just now finding out that Duran is working with Mark Ronson again.  For those fans, they couldn’t be more thrilled (assuming that they loved AYNIN).  For most fans, this news brings a certain level of excitement but also a certain level of comfort.  Let’s face it.  Duran has been so innovative that they truly have tried to never make the same album twice and each album definitely sounds different from the album before it and the album after it.  Sometimes, the change has been welcomed, especially when it feels like they hit the nail on the hit with an album after one that wasn’t as well-liked.  All You Need Is Now is the perfect example of that.  A lot of fans were disappointed or worse with Red Carpet Massacre.  AYNIN was very much a welcomed change.  I suppose it can be argued that some of Duran’s best albums have been created after a not-as-great album.  Some would say the Wedding Album was another example of that.  My point here is that Duran often tries to change, to be different from the previous album. Will that happen with Mark?  It is hard to say.  Will the new album sound like a continued version of AYNIN?  Will it sound different?  The one thing a lot of us fans would say is that Mark seemed to really get Duran. Thus, it doesn’t matter as much if it sounds like AYNIN part 2 or is something totally different.  We have confidence that it will still sound and feel like Duran.

The other interesting thing about the band working with Mark again is that they haven’t worked with same producer two times in a row for a whole album since their first two albums when they worked with Colin Thurston.  Yes, I realized that they worked with Nile Rodgers a few times, but those weren’t all for albums.  Likewise, Alex Sadkin produced Seven and then produced Arcadia.  That still isn’t the same.  Anyway, interestingly enough, the first two albums plus AYNIN are definitely my top 3 Duran albums.  I wonder how much this fact of having the same producer will make a difference.  In particular, I have to wonder about how long the album might take.  I’m sure all of you out there are talking about Durantime as you read and I won’t disagree, but I have to wonder if already having established working relationships might not speed up the process.  Perhaps, it won’t speed up the process as much as it might make it more enjoyable for all involved.  We may never know.

No matter the length of time to make the album, I have confidence that it will turn out well.  I also have to hope that there continues to be tweets and updates from the studio.  It will definitely keep my excitement up!!

-A

16 thoughts on “Look Into the Future…Don’t Be Afraid”

  1. I was thrilled to see pictures and tweets from the studio, and it was really nice to see that they're going to be sending more this week for those of us *coughs* like me who are OCD about the band.

    Someday, I'm going to have to have therapy. *sigh* I'm not ready yet.

    -R

  2. Strange that you mention being OCD about the band coz I was just going to comment that it's FAR too early for me to have any opinion on a new album that hasn't even been partially realized yet. Going in to the studio is good news but not earth shaking for me anyways…LOL.

    In all honesty, I'm going to be staying away from commenting on any news during the recording process this time, a choice really. With all that has gone before and my disappointment with the last 2 albums I want to see the band bring it ….. I want to see something different, relevant, and Duran Duran all at the same time. I hope they find it because I don't think that I'd be in for a mercy purchase just to support the band if I find I'm still disappointed. Here's to hoping it's something I can finally get behind and be truly excited about.

    Love ya girls!!!

    Shawn

  3. I think the best thing Ronson did for them was to convince the band to “get over” their inclination to always want to run away from the sound that made them famous in the first place. That being said…I think AYNIN was sort of a musical journey for Duran. At its core, of course, were songs in the more classic Duran style–Being Followed, Girl Panic, Blame the Machines, Runway Runaway, Leave a light on…all seem to seamlessly flow w/the Colin Thurston era songs. But AYNIN (the song) is as much a homage to their 90s work (at least the very industrial sounding verses) as its soaring chorus is to the best of their 80s singles. “Safe” is reminiscent of Nile Rodgers and Notorious (minus the horns section)…Networker Nation also sounds 90s to me…as does “Other People's Lives”…and I don't know what was up with the non-Ronson bonus tracks–all I can tell you is that I liked them, too, and they definitely wouldn't have sounded out of place on some of the other 2000s albums…my rather long-winded point is just that the band seemed freed by Ronson to explore whatever they wanted on AYNIN and I'm guessing (and hoping)they will continue to do so with the follow-up.

    All I ask, guys, is…no more Chauffeur rewrites…please…I've come to grudgingly accept “Leopard” and “Before the Rain” (the latter is a GREAT concert opener–I concede that)…just not my cup of tea, though…I prefer my Duran ballads to be more Save a Prayer/Seventh Stranger/Pop Trash Movie-ish, that's all…

    Anyway, Happy St. Patrick's Day to all…now I must go and prove that I'm not a robot…

  4. I think you described it well, Chris, when you said that Ronson freed them to be themselves. That said, I ADORE both Leopard and Before the Rain. Perhaps, my live experiences with those songs have made me a fan but I would love others like them and I say that as not the world's biggest fan of the Chauffeur.

    -A

  5. I think Duran needs to just be themselves and embrace their musical identity to let the creative forces guide them. As Colin Thurston produced two remarkable albums, (arguable their best)Mark Ronson is more than well suited to attempt the Thurston legacy of capturing lightning in a bottle twice. At this point, Duran has the right people to do so.

  6. LOL Now see I MUCH prefer The Chauffeur to Save A Prayer. For me The Chauffeur was always, in some ways, THE song for me. I loved Save a Prayer, don't get me wrong(less now than I did then though to be honest) but I have never and I don't believe I will ever tire of The Chauffeur. 🙂 So I'm fine with “More of that sort of that sort of thing” from them, like Before the Rain, Leopard, etc.

  7. I was very glad to hear of the first snippets from the studio: no action seemed to be such secret as few of us feared!
    I’m sending them all of my support and I wish they all would give room, support and respect to each other and that, finally, the accumulated stress wouldn’t spoil their temper.
    I wasn’t surprised to read the anti-Andy fans this morning, while sharing on their site(s) the band’s very first news from the studio, as well, they actually sort of “raised up the barricades”, hastening to specify that “the guitarist currently recording with them now is Dom Brown”

  8. My interest in the band is based solely based on the music so I can see why you'd say such a thing but musically I feel the last 2 albums just didn't have the experience behind them that I know the band has. I do appreciate that at least you laughed at me politely in public, I take it as a compliment.

    I don't want the band to sound like themselves, I want them to BE themselves when making a record. While reading other comments here it seems I'm not the only one to feel that way though I may express it a bit differently. I do not “represent” the unpleased fan, I represent myself though there are others out there that feel as I do. I believe that in concept, AYNIN was a fresh start but that in the end, it was not proof of said concept. RCM tells a similar tale with less pleasant results. Those are just my personal opinions and I'm okay with that.

    Now, when it comes to a live surrounding, I know the band rarely disappoints ….. I've been to a few their live shows without Andy or John, believe it or not, and they put on a fine show. Unfortunately, missed opportunities is one of the bands biggest downfalls, and they have yet to recover completely from them.

    I am still a duranie. I am still a fan of the band. I am not afraid to praise them when they kick some major arse. I am also not afraid to speak openly about disappointments. I am still a duranie and still a fan of the band.

    Affectionately & Respectfully,

    🙂

    Shawn

  9. Yeah but I still don't see what my saying that I was happy to see that they were tweeting pictures has to do with my opinions about the new album….that hasn't even been recorded yet! My comments were purely that I was happy to hear from them…and I am.

    I feel exactly the same way when I hear from Tears for Fears, Paul McCartney, and about a thousand others. I just don't think you can paint this as being interested in the band for more than their music – I like hearing about their progress in general from my list of “favorites”…and that list has VERY little to do with anything but their music, thanks.

    -R

  10. I was never a big fan of The Chauffeur either…but I love Leopard. Now, I can hear where those two are very similar (in fact I believe the first 30 seconds or so of Leopard is a WILD ripoff of The Chauffeur, but I love the song anyway), but I still can't hear what Chris hears with Before the Rain and it drives me crazy. 🙂

    -R

  11. Rhonda, I was responding to Amanda's comment and just making general observations in my first post, there was nothing directed at you or anyone personally so I'm not really sure what you're on about … but I am sorry you felt I was somehow attacking you personally, unless of course because I represent “displeased” fans I am no longer allowed to share my own personal “not written in stone or gospel” opinion anymore?

    I'm sure that is not the case though, it is probably the unfortunate effect of not having the conversation in person instead of here on the internet. I'm good with your thoughts on the matter regardless.

    🙂

    Shawn

  12. Shawn – to be honest I couldn't really tell, which is why I asked. I didn't think you were attacking me though. Not at all. I just asked because as you said – sometimes its hard to tell online. No harm done…and I don't care if you're a displeased fan or not, you're welcome around here any time you'd like! 🙂

    -R

We (Amanda and Rhonda) appreciate discussion and differences of opinion. We respectfully ask that you fully read the blog before bitching us out. If you're only here to take us down a notch, note that we moderate replies (meaning we're not printing rude comments). Thanks a bunch!