Duran Duran were huge in the early 80’s and that is right when I was growing up and creating my own sens of self and my music. This was a good and bad thing in and of itself. I had always been image conscious and the New Romantics (or what we got to see of them on Australian regional TV) played right into my court. Simon and Nick seemed so cool in their puffy shirts and stylized pouts and shoulder waggling I had to like their music.
Thankfully their music was good and I did like it. Well at least till the Arcadia movie and then it all seemed to be over. Sure Arcadia was a thing and The Power Station was chunky cool but Arcadia is where the Durans finished for me. No argument.
I got a copy of the 1981, self titled album when I was in Senior (1985) and really liked the moody synth album tracks a lot. By then most people derided them as being rubbish but I knew I had a record of value. The other cassette I had at the time was Pseudo Echo‘s Autumnal Park and looking back I can see how the latter was heavily influenced by the former. I got Duran Duran (the record) early on in my record buying career and it has often been the first thing I have listened to on new stereo gear.
Rio is very good record and for a while I thought it excellent work. Either way The Chauffeur is one of the most special songs to come out of the 80’s. The Nagal painting launched a thousand prints and defined many an apartment wall.
Seven & The Ragged Tiger is full of promise and disappointment for me. New Moon On Monday is a good song with a good hook and the other songs are all good but Simon’s voice takes to whining all the way through. I listen to the record every now and then but always find it hard to take.
Arena is a fitting end to all of this as it is really a best of package disguised as a live album with a new song in Wild Boys.
Sometimes the excess can become excessive and exceed the reason for being. That is what was bad about the Durans and the fact they, and many other artists like them, drew me away from the music in and of itself. Of course this period was so full of wonderful Pop that I regret none of it and treasure it all, even the slightly dubious.