Saturday, October 14, 2006

Duran Duran Mood Pieces

Far removed from the obvious hit-single characteristics of standards like "Hungry Like the Wolf", "Is There Something I Should Know" and "The Reflex", there is another aspect to the new-wave sonic template of Duran Duran. Mostly conceived and driven on by Nick Rhodes's synth wizardry and production aptitude, these evocative mood pieces suitably display the more avant-garde qualities of the band. Here are several noteworthy instances of Duran Duran's artier side:

Long, sweeping synth layers and slow-motion guitar riffs comprise the basic framework of this ominous tune that suffers slightly from typically nonsensical lyrics. Arguably the least poppish track on the debut album.

Highly reminiscent of mid-period Roxy Music, this moody number plays perfectly to any given scene from the dystopian classic "Blade Runner". Throbbing synth patterns, snarly guitar hooks and skittish drumbeats all add up to a futuristic-sounding melody that is the arguable highlight of the band's eponymous debut.

TEL AVIV (1981)
A vaguely arabesque-sounding instrumental that takes in nervy keyboard stabs, synth-string waftings and sampled call-to-prayer wailings. The band almost goes the psych-rock route here.

Arguably Duran Duran's most experimental track to date, this extended tone poem is built around ice-cold synth staccatos, a growling bass undertow and pan-pipe samples. Simultaneously elegant and ghostly in nature, there also exists an academically interesting stripped-down version that is anchored by acoustic-guitar pluckings and fretless-bass tappings.

An atmospheric, cabalistic instrumental that is the sole property of Nick Rhodes, who plays everything here. High-register synth tones and sampled tribal percussion enhance the track's inherent aura of intrigue. Great use of Fairlight sampling technology here.


Blogger sashi said...

Dude, you still need to blog even though you're in a foreign country now? Go out la!

9:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well done. What about the brilliant Bside Faith In This Colour from the Is There Something I Should Know single? Also 'Night Boat'

7:47 AM  

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