Tag Archives: Electric Barbarella

Question of the Day: Monday, May 29, 2017

Yesterday’s winner:  Ordinary World

Which video do you like better:  Perfect Day or Electric Barbarella?

Electric Barbarella over Sunrise??

I enjoy setting up the question of the day on this blog because I like doing the polls myself and I learn from them.  This week, I noticed an interesting result.  As probably most of you know we have been asking about video preferences.  While we had asked this question before, we haven’t done so since the most recent videos from Paper Gods came out.  Generally, I feel like I have a sense of which videos Duranies prefer.  For example, I expect New Moon on Monday to be popular based on previous surveys, word of mouth, etc.  Earlier this week, I asked which video people preferred between Sunrise and Electric Barbarella,  Interestingly enough, Electric Barbarella won by a LOT.  In fact, more people voted in that poll than the rest of the week’s combined.  What’s up with that and which video do I prefer and why?

Do Duranies really prefer the video for Electric Barbarella over the video for Sunrise?  I’m not really sure despite the result of the poll.  Obviously, the verdict was decided by the people who voted and not all Duranies vote on this site.  If I asked again, I wonder if I would get the same result.  What if I asked in a different way or with different fans?  What if I went to Facebook groups and asked or busted out the question on message boards?  Anyway, I have to wonder why we had so many more votes that day and why for Electric Barbarella.

Let’s take a moment to watch that video before I add my thoughts about this video:

All right, I’m just going to say it.  I don’t like this video.  I might even go so far as to say that I really dislike it.  It is definitely one of my least favorite Duran Duran videos.  (Don’t send hate mail.  I can be a fan and not like one video.)  I won’t lie.  It isn’t even a favorite song of mine.  While I appreciated the connection to Barbarella and to the band’s history, it isn’t enough for me.  Some of you might say that my dislike for both the song and video probably has something to do with the lack of John Taylor.  I’m sure that you might be somewhat right.  That said, I like Out of my Mind (the song mostly) and that doesn’t have John.

While the song doesn’t cut it for me, the video is WAY worse.  If this was the only video that I saw from Duran, I would not be a fan.  First of all, the video is too predictable.  It feels to me that it is follows the song too precisely.  The viewer isn’t forced to think or ponder anything as it is all spelled out.  I’m also not a fan of the premise.  Here’s a “woman” that can be bought and then directed to do whatever via a remote control.  Of course, I realize that it is a “robot”.  Still, the message is too close to objectification of women and that makes me uncomfortable.  Some of you might be pointing out that Duran often uses women in their videos.  That’s true.  I don’t find most of those women to be seen as objects.  The woman of Rio, for example, holds the power over the guys.  Even the women of the Chauffeur aren’t objects. One might even argue that they don’t need men at all.  Some might say that the models of Girls on Film show how awful models in real life can be treated.  I think the use of women and how they are shown can be explained, for the most part, in their videos except for Electric Barbarella.

Sunrise is very different.  Let’s watch that video to compare:

As you might imagine, I really like this one.  I don’t know that I would say that it is one of my ultimate favorites but I enjoy the heck out of it.  I love that the focus is the band.  It tells the story of each member traveling to come back together.  The storyline is not obvious but fits not only the song but what was happening with the band at the time.      Yes, I also appreciate that it featured the Fab Five, too.  It wasn’t just Simon, Nick and Warren like Electric Barbarella.  It also captures a part of the band’s history with the reunion.

I have a few questions remaining.  First, am I the only one who likes the Sunrise video over Electric Barbarella?  Am I the only one who finds the video for Electric Barbarella a little distasteful?  Then, if I am not the only one who prefers Sunrise, what do you make of the vote showing a vast majority favoring the other?  I guess one thing is true.  The Duran Duran fan community never ceases to amaze me or make me think.

-A

Question of the Day: Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Yesterday’s winner:  Electric Barbarella

Which video do you like better:  All You Need Is Now or Girl Panic?

Question of the Day: Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Yesterday’s winner:

Which video do you like better:  Electric Barbarella or Sunrise?

Question of the Day: Thursday, May 11, 2017

Yesterday’s winner:  Electric Barbarella

Which video do you like better:  Sunrise or What Happens Tomorrow?

Question of the Day: Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Yesterday’s winner:  Perfect Day

Which video do you like better:  Electric Barbarella or Someone Else Not Me?

Medazzaland Facts and Stats

I have to apologize for the lateness of today’s blog.  I have been completely swamped with trying to complete a lot of grading while writing new curriculum.  I hoped to get to this earlier today but…well, you can see how well my plans are going.  Anyway, last weekend, I took time to evaluate the first of the three albums that Duran Duran has released in the month of October.  That album, of course, was Big Thing and that blog you can read here.  Today, I’ll give some facts and statistics about Medazzaland released in 1997.  In later blogs, I’ll look at Astronaut and the albums released in November.

Medazzaland Facts:
Released October 14, 1997 in North America, Japan, Brazil and Argentina but never released physically in Europe.
Produced by TVMania and Syn Pro Tokyo.  (It appears to me then as it was mostly produced by the band.)
There were 12 tracks on the album.

Singles:

  1. Out of My Mind
    Released: 27 March 1997
  2. Electric Barbarella
    Released: 16 September 1997

Peak Chart Position:

  1.  Out of My Mind peaked at #21 in the UK
  2. Electric Barbarella peaked at #52 in the US

Personnel:

As I’m sure you all know, the band at this time was just Simon, Nick and Warren.  A fact that you might not know, though, is that Warren played bass on the tracks that John did not.  Anyway, others filled in to complete the album including:

  • John Taylor – bass (tracks 1, 2, 7, and 11)
  • Steve Alexander – live drums (tracks 1, 2, 5, 7)
  • Anthony J. Resta – live drums (tracks 2, 3, 5, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12), additional production, mixing and programming
  • Dave DiCenso – live drums (track 4)
  • Tim Garland – treated soprano sax solo (track 9)
  • Talvin Singh – tabla and santoor (track 4)
  • Jake Shapiro – cello (track 10)
  • Sally Stapleton – background vocals (track 2)
  • Madeleine Farley – background vocals (track 6)
  • Mayko Cuccurullo – ultra high vocal fx (track 1)

Videos:

They did complete two videos from this album, for both singles:

Out of My Mind:

Electric Barbarella:

EPK (Electronic Press Kit:

Touring:

The Ultra Chrome, Latex and Steel Tour began in November of 1997 in the Northeast United States.  They traveled throughout the US and Canada.  At the end of that tour, they did a tribute show and a special show to launch SKY Digital TV in the UK.  In December 1998, they did the Latest and Greatest Tour in the UK before returning to the US in the fall of 1999.  The end of 1999 saw a mini-tour, Overnight Sensation, in Ireland, the UK, the US, and Chile.  Here are a couple of clips to show off those tours:

Beyond all of these facts, many Duranies have strong feelings about this album.  For many, it represents when John Taylor left the band or when some really stopped paying attention.  For others, it equaled heavy involvement as the band seemed more accessible.  Many loved the experimental music while others have yet to buy a copy or listen to it all the way through.  Next weekend, I’ll share my thoughts on the album.  Until then, I would love to hear your thoughts or experiences about the Medazzaland album and era.

-A

You’re Welcome to Celebrity

I am a political person.  I hold teacher certificates in History and Political Science and has volunteered for many campaigns from local races all the way up to President.  Yet, I try to avoid political discussions here or on our Daily Duranie social media.  Fandom is supposed to be focused more on fun.  Plus, I recognize that not everyone agrees with me and I would never want to alienate anyone because of that.  (Heck, my partner-in-crime doesn’t always agree with me.)

The latest big new story about Donald Trump’s statements about sexually assaulting and objectifying women really has me thinking, especially since part of his statement in 2005 surrounded fame and celebrity-ness.  According to the article from the Guardian, which you can read here, “…a tape emerged of the Republican candidate bragging about using his fame to try and “fuck” women and groping them without waiting for their consent.  ‘When you’re a star they let you do it,’ Trump says in the recording, which was obtained by the Washington Post and released on Friday. ‘You can do anything.’  Does fame really give people or men, specifically, a free pass to commit sexual assault?  Then, I wonder what would happen if I ever found out anything close to this about Duran Duran.  Could/would I still support them?

Unfortunately, Donald Trump is probably not the first, nor will he be the last celebrity to make statements like this.  I think there are some celebrities out there who do believe that their fame gives them the opportunity to do whatever they want to whomever they want.  I’m not naive as I’m sure that for some people, fame is a turn on and they would gladly jump into bed with whatever celebrity they can find.  Of course, that is not what is going on in this situation.  This is about the lack of consent.  It isn’t about someone thinking a celebrity is hot simply because he is famous.  No, it is about the assumption that Trump felt (feels???) like fame means that he does not need to wait for consent.  He didn’t need to wait to get permission before acting in a sexual way towards someone.

In my world, consent does not change depending on who is the person giving or getting the consent.  Every person, every woman, has the right to say no.  Every person must get consent before acting sexually.  According to the Department of Justice, the definition of sexual assault is, “Sexual assault is any type of sexual contact or behavior that occurs without the explicit consent of the recipient. Falling under the definition of sexual assault are sexual activities as forced sexual intercourse, forcible sodomy, child molestation, incest, fondling, and attempted rape.”  Based on this definition, sexual assault is sexual assault.  Trump’s statements on tape indicate sexual assault.  His fame is irrelevant other than the fact that fame could create more of a difference in power.  Therefore, in my eyes, fame does not excuse sexual assault.  It just makes it worse.

The next question is more challenging.  Would I be able to support Duran Duran if one of the band members was accused of something similar?  I’ll be honest.  I didn’t like Donald Trump before this.  (Actually, that might be an understatement.)  Therefore, this news did not change my thoughts or feelings about him.  My negative thoughts about him were just reinforced with this revelation.  Obviously, Duran is the opposite.  I have been a passionate fan of theirs for decades.  Finding out something even remotely similar to this would crush me.  Luckily, I can’t imagine anything so horrible to be true of my favorite band.

Yet, I have to acknowledge that they aren’t always or haven’t always been pro-woman.  The video for Electric Barbarella is pretty dang sexist, in my opinion.  The woman is designed to just clean and be a sex toy for the band without actually having or using a voice of her own.  Does that kind of sexism equal what Trump said and did to women?  I don’t think it does for a really big reason.  A video is fiction.  It isn’t real.  It is made up.  All of the people are acting.  I still don’t like it (understatement) but it isn’t the same as sexual assault.

Donald Trump wasn’t playing a character in that tape from 2005.  He was being himself.  I have never heard one story about a member of Duran Duran treating, thinking, or talking about women in such a way in their personal lives, in their real lives.  Instead, I hear them speaking highly of their wives, their daughters, their mothers as well as the women who work with them and women in the public eye.

What would happen if I did find out something horrible about a band member?  As I stated earlier, it would crush me.  I could not continue to be a fan or support someone who advocates assaulting women.  It is a line in the sand for me.  They could disagree with me about how best to approach countless political issues, but they could not be hateful of women like the Republican nominee for President.

As I continue to process this story and what it means for this year’s election and politics in general, I’m thankful that I am a fan and a supporter of a band, made up of men, who may not be perfect in their treatment of women over their careers but who, personally, have demonstrated nothing but respect for women in their lives and women in general.

-A

Question of the Day: Friday, April 15, 2016

Yesterday’s winner:  White Lines (And…really….we are keeping Come Undone on the setlist?!?)

Which song would you rather be LEFT OFF the setlist:  Electric Barbarella or Hallucinating Elvis?

Question of the Day: Thursday, October 15, 2015

Yesterday’s winner:  Too Much Information

Which single do you like better?