Duran Duran: All You Need is Now (Shock)

 |   |  1 min read

Duran Duran: Other People's Lives
Duran Duran: All You Need is Now (Shock)

Although seemingly past their use-by date, Duran Duran are enjoying that perfect storm where nostalgia by their Eighties fans collides with a generation of younger musicians who are plundering that decade for ideas and sounds.

And suitably decked out in aggressive black clobber for their first video they launch this album with an admirable panache -- and sound like a slightly tougher version of their earlier incarnation. Which is smart.

They also get stellar assistance from Amy Winehouse/Adele/Kaiser Chiefs producer Mark Ronson as well as guests Kelis and Ana Matronic of uber-fans the Scissor Sisters, with Owen Pallett of Arcade Fire doing the string arrangements.

But what impresses here -- and it really does, even if you aren't a fan -- is the strength of their songwriting. Many of these -- the title track, the driving Being Followed, the dramatic Girl Panic! -- sound carved off from their classic period around Rio/Seven and the Ragged Tiger.

And that's no mean feat for a band which had really lost its way.

Safe in the Heat of the Moon pulls in a little Chic-like funk and Other People's Lives is urgent and snappy pop (although they must have their tongues in the cheeks with these lyrics about excess, self-obsession and glossy magazines . . . then following it with the escapist Meditteranea). Before the Rain is an appropriately ennui-filled ballad as a closer. 

At 57 minutes it might be a track or two too long (Too Bad You're So Beautiful and Runaway Runaway right at the end add nothing and detract from the established energy by outstaying their welcome) but that seems a small criticism of an album which is a surprising and welcome return to form.

Who would have thought? 

Like the sound of this? Then check out this.

Share It

Your Comments

Chris - May 11, 2011

It's not bad aye? While I was a fan when I was a wee boy i drifted away from the English pop scene into deeper, darker things. This album has some great pop songs on but also highlights the fact that SLB is a terrible lyricist and doesn't have a great voice either. Still its fun, which must have been what attracted me all those years ago...

post a comment

More from this section   Music articles index

The Clean: Mashed (Arch Hill)

The Clean: Mashed (Arch Hill)

What can you say? The Clean recorded live during their '07 national tour.Really, enough said: David Kilgour's guitar just gets more mercurial and expressive over time (if sometimes pulling back... > Read more

Luke Haines: Rock and Roll Animals (Cherry Red/Southbound)

Luke Haines: Rock and Roll Animals (Cherry Red/Southbound)

Formerly of Brit-pop band the Auteurs, Luke Haines has pursued film music, writing and interesting conceptual albums, and been the subject of a novel, a comic book and a doco. For this album... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT . . . ROY BUCHANAN: The Messiah who isn't coming back

WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT . . . ROY BUCHANAN: The Messiah who isn't coming back

There have been any number of Southern blues, soul and rock'n'roll musicians who have struggled with their pull of their secular and spiritual sides: Jerry Lee Lewis, Little Richard, Son House, Al... > Read more

AEROSMITH, THE ULTIMATE HISTORY OF THE BOSTON BAD BOYS by RICHARD BIENSTOCK

AEROSMITH, THE ULTIMATE HISTORY OF THE BOSTON BAD BOYS by RICHARD BIENSTOCK

The real problem with the story of Aerosmith's five decade career is that -- despite the drugs, decadence, women, partying and internal friction -- it is rather boring. It follows such a familiar... > Read more