Meet El Presidente

Four days of bouncing between CNN and MSNBC has zapped my brain. Living in Nevada, I knew which way our state was going and it was fun watching the world fret over us for a few days. In the end, the two tribes went to war and the divisions are still there. To clear my mind, I spent today listening to the new Kylie Minogue album (review here) as the world waited to meet El Presidente.

Speaking of “Meet El Presidente”, today’s blog is basically me gushing about side two of the Notorious album. Pound for pound, I think it ranks with their best work and might be my favorite album side. Is it? I don’t know, let me peruse the discography for a second….(I’m blogging in real time not sure where I’m going!)

Duran Duran – Five Best Album Sides
  1. Side two of the debut
  2. Side two of Notorious
  3. Side two of Tiger
  4. Side two of Arena
  5. Side one of Rio

I wanted to put side one of Big Thing on there but “Drug”. Side one of the debut is almost on my list but “To The Shore” is a bit too atmospheric and the reissue has a single that doesn’t fit the flow. Even though I have some on vinyl, I don’t consider anything after Liberty as having sides.

Getting back to Notorious, it was such a pivotal moment for the band and the songs simply hold-up better than most of their catalogue. The drums of Steve Ferrone have a lot to do with that but Simon’s writing and the melodies are fantastic. I remember being dismayed when “Skin Trade” and then “Meet El Presidente” failed to make a significant dent in the charts. Now, I better understand popular culture and the ebbing tide of fame.

Whenever “Winter Marches On” comes on, I am always struck at how well Nick Rhodes draped the song in a chilling fog. The mood lingers around you and it would have worked as a closing track had they decided to go in a more artsy direction. However, the band was backed in a corner at the time and they go out punching on “Proposition”, capping a five song masterclass in 80s pop-rock. What are some of your favorite album sides?

1 comment

  1. For the most part I agree with you, but side two of Rio has The Chauffeur. So that makes side two my favorite on that album.

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