Tag Archives: Broadway

Whole Album Preference

On this date, in 2007, twelve years ago, I saw Duran Duran play in New York City. What made this particular show so memorable was the fact that the show took place on Broadway. For those who weren’t around or don’t remember, Duran Duran had a rather unique promotional plan for the album released that year, Red Carpet Massacre. This included doing a small run on Broadway in which case they played the whole album before doing an electro set and finishing up with a mini-classic Duran show. While I cannot say that this was my favorite show experience, it was a special one for the performance. Looking back, it felt like a long show and the setlist proves it:

The Valley 
Red Carpet Massacre 
Nite-Runner 
Falling Down 
Box Full o’Honey 
Skin Divers 
Tempted 
Tricked Out 
Zoom In 
She’s Too Much 
Dirty Great Monster 
Last Man Standing 

INTERVAL 

Electro Set 

Showroom Dummies 
Last Chance on the Stairway 
All She Wants Is 
Warm Leatherette 
I Don’t Want Your Love 
Skin Trade 
******************** 
Notorious 
Reflex 
I Take The Dice 
Ordinary World 
Planet Earth 
View To A Kill 
Sunrise 
************* 
Girls On Film

That’s 26 songs! In fairness to more recent shows, some of these songs were not played in entirety but still. On top of a really long show, I loved hearing/seeing a whole album played in order. While RCM is not my favorite album, seeing them perform each track made me appreciate the album more and helped me to connect with some songs. Then, there was the electro set, which was simply amazing. The electro set featured the four band members at the front of the stage using keyboards to play more electronic versions of some tracks. To this day, I am still beyond thankful that I got to see it. All of that was then capped off with a bunch of hits that most in the audience would know and love.

Now that I’m thinking about this show, I would really love if the band wanted to do something similar to this…say next year for their 40th with three sets (whole album, electro set, others). The big question then is which album should they cover? In the case of the show I went to in 2007, they played their newest album. If we were lucky enough to get a new album next year, I think it would be very cool to hear the entire album from beginning to end. But what if there was not a new album? What then? I know that many, many fans would love to hear Rio in entirety. I get that feeling since it is a classic one and that is album that won many fans over. For me, I wouldn’t reject it. I know that I have heard each song off of Rio live but definitely not in order. That said, I’m not sure I would choose it over others.

I think if I had to choose one album to listen to live from start to finish, I might pick the first one. To me, it is where the story starts, which would be particularly cool for the 40th anniversary. Then, the final set could include songs from each of the rest of the albums. To me, that would be a super cool way to celebrate the band’s history. The show, then, would capture the complete story. Here’s another idea. What if the next album was released in 2020? Maybe then, start with the first album. Have the electro set feature hits from Rio onward until the last set, which would focus on the last album. Then, it really would be the entire history, of sorts.

What do the rest of you think? Which album would you love to see/hear live in entirety? What if the band set up a show like they did those on Broadway? How would you like to see it done?

-A

Whole Albums?

Right around this time eleven years ago, Duran Duran was playing on Broadway in New York City as a way to promote their new album,  Red Carpet Massacre.  The show consisted of three acts.  They played the entire album of Red Carpet Massacre except for bonus tracks, in order, for the first act.  The second one included the electro set in which they played a few tracks, electronically, at the front of the stage before moving on to the third act, which felt like a usual Duran show with their classic hits.

I was lucky enough to attend one of these shows.  In fact, I saw the show in which Donald Trump was in attendance.  (For the record, I had better seats than he did.)  Anyway, I thought and still think that this was a brilliant way to introduce a new album.  Fans get to see their old favorites during the third act.  The electro set was special and awesome in its own right but then you get to hear each and every new song live.  I don’t know about the rest of you but seeing/hearing songs live make them so much better.  In all seriousness, I struggle to listen to studio versions of many Duran songs after seeing them live.  With Red Carpet Massacre, hearing the songs live took away some of those overproduction and left the song to speak for itself.  I cannot help but to think about one song, in particular, which is Tricked Out.  On the album, it feels like a bad 70s science fiction TV show’s theme song.  Live, it was all about the guitars.  I have loved the song ever since.

So, if playing a whole album works to promote an album, would it work for an older album?  While I’m not sure how many copies of an old album would be sold through that method, but I’m certain that there would be new appreciation for the songs.  It might even excite more fans to come buy tickets.  That has to be just as good as selling albums, right?  I think so!  Plus, many people think this might be good for the 40th anniversary as a way to capture Duran’s career.  It might also sell more concert tickets, especially from the hardcore fans who would definitely like to hear something more than the hits known by the general public.

So if it is a winning idea, which album should be chosen?  The immediate fan response is probably Rio.  That would draw the crowd!  It would be easier on the band since many songs from that album are all ready in the rotation for setlist these days so they wouldn’t have to practice all of them.  From my perspective, though, I’m not sure that I would choose Rio.  It definitely isn’t that I don’t like it.  No, part of my hesitation is that I have seen all the songs from that album live.  Granted they were not all at the same show but still.   Selfishly, I would like to broaden which songs I have seen live.  (I hope that doesn’t make me sound like a terrible person.)   The other part would be sad for the fans is that Rio is short.  It is a short album in terms of number of songs but also how long the songs are themselves.

No, I think that if I had my choice, it would be a longer album.  While I adore the first three, those are all relatively short.  I might choose All You Need Is Now.  It is a solid album, all the way through, and it brings back lots of great memories.  On top of it, since it is relatively new, it could help sell more copies of that one.  What about the rest of you?  Which album would you love to see played all the way through, in order?

-A