May 23, 2013 Update | The band is back in the studio to record a new album. This one will be the bands 14th album as Duran Duran enter into their 35th year!

New Recording Phase | On Monday the 4th of March Duran Duran has reconvened in the studio after a six month hiatus to start writing the new album . They started jamming and put ideas together at the new Dom Brown's studio but they are back to their usual studio in South London, where, according to Simon's tweets, they have concluded the second writing session on April 18th.
They guys have been working, in an alternating mode, also in May and they recently concluded their third recording session.

A batch of photos from the first session in March, have been posted on the band's official website. They were the first set of snaps showing the band working with Mark Ronson.

It all sounds very promising, the guys have been talking in a very positive way about this new writing and recording phase and fans could not be happier to hear that their favourite band is still so enthusiastic about the future and so productive.

The Point | This new edition of duranasty is mainly dedicated to the just started band's creative and recording process; we are going to look back together at the recent comments, interviews and official statements that the band has released through the media and different sources. Just hope this new installement will be for you all a nice way to the make the point on the actual status of the band.

Our webzine | In the usual webzine style this update is also filled with pics and scans, stuff that will help to keep us up to date.

Something new | since many of you enjoy our updates from a mobile or tablet rather than a computer I decided to split up the installment in different pages rather than just put all in one page [with consequent slowness downloading the images], in this way the pics will load more easily and will be also easier to link back a specific subject in the social media if you like. Hope you enjoy this new format, I'm always trying to improve the way to offer you a new update and I hope you appreciate the effort.

New chapter in the band's history | As a fan like you all, I couldn't be happier and excited about this new chapter of the band's history, it seems that the direction, the ideas and the passion the band and Mark are putting in the new music are going to make of this album another one to be proud of.

Deeper is the Word |
If I had to pick a word, just a word, from all the bits and comments posted here and there it would one pronounced by Roger Taylor recently, the music is going in a more deeper direction.
It all lead me to think that there will be this aspect on the album, the introspective trip that John has done inside himself with In The Pleasure Groove just opened the door.
On a personal level, even though I love songs like Girl Panic! and I will be dancing with the ultimate party-band the day the bomb will drop, I would also enjoy an album made of songs that speaks to band's main target, the common people, so I hope they will put in the mix some reflections on today's world and the human condition. An album that touches also subjects such as the beauty and the greatness of the 'banality of life' [to quote TVMania]. We actually hope the band finds the perfect combination of music and lyrics, pop appeal and deepness, contemporary sound and band's musical trademark and, above all, they'll release something they will all be 100% proud of, something they will strongly believe in. So good luck guys from you fans!


"They are writing new songs now but I haven't heard the newest stuff"
Mark Ronson May, 2013

Fan Meeting | Our friend Eunhee has recently met Mark Ronson in Korea, this is what she reports: "I went to Incheon Int'l Airport to meet and greet Mark who came to Korea for a dj set. As for Duran's new album he only said they are writing new songs now but he hasn't heard newest stuff. I told him I am very glad with what he did for All You Need Is Now album and happy he is working again with Duran. He replied he will tell Duran! Will he?

 

NEW: make sure to click on all the 8 differnet sections of this installment [the colored rectangles on the cover] and have fun!

 

Duran back in the studio, third recording session
looking for the right direction


In Brief: all we know about the album untill now.

  • Recording the album is going to be a 12 months process;
  • John says they are about to find out how it should sound and what direction they should go;
  • Roger and Nick says that some stuff has a funky flavour;
  • There's some quite upbeat stuff;
  • They are staying away from the "Big Duran sound" that Ronson wanted to recreate on AYNIN;
  • It won't be a replica of the last album;
  • There's a direction change going on and they are trying some different things out;
  • One track sounds like Radiohead meets Duran;
  • They have 12 tracks so far, some more developed than others;
  • Some of these tracks are very strong;
  • Recording sessions are usually two weeks long.

The band has recently answerd a fan's question on the official website about the sound of the new album.

"we never really know what we’re doing when we go in to the studio for the first time to create something new. It is actually quite an exciting process, watching the musical direction take shape. It tends to go through several different stages of metamorphosis before we make a cohesive decision which colours the whole project. So far, it is developing to be quite different from the last album, but still likely to move you closer to the dance floor.

"If you write songs that are honest
and that people can relate to,
even things with the most abstract lyrics,
if it's something that people can relate to
and they can get ahold of something that affects them some kind of way, emotionally or means something at a certain point in their lives,
then I think you've got a much better opportunity for your material to endure.
If you want to make a quick buck and you do things swiftly and it's all about
just getting that thing done,
I don't know how much artistry
is involved with that.
Some people can work very quickly."
Nick Rhodes @ Huffington Post 2013

 

Roger Taylor on Duran Duran's child No 14

The music sounds a little deeper, a little less poppy

We are re-energized says Roger | During the April Katy Kafe posted last month on the official duranduranmusic.com fan community [conducted by Katy Krassner who is also doing a fantastic job keeping the fans constantly up to date trough the band's official social media] Roger has informed his fans of how good the band is doing in the studio:

"We had a really good few weeks, load of ideas, we have developed quite a few of those ideas into things that actually almost sounds like songs, and it's been really good, eveyone has been very inspired, it's been fantastic i gotta say, the album with Mark and the amazing tour we had at the back of the last album it kinda re-inspired us for this record, there's been a great mood in the studio, its all good."

Direction | Roger was even more specific when he talks about the direction the band has taken for Duran's Child No 14. He said "it's pretty unique I think, it's a little kinda funkier, it reminds me of the Notorious period of the band a little bit, there's some quite upbeat stuff, there's one songs that reminds of Rahiohead, kinda like Radiohead meets Duran, that wasn't analyzed at all, we had not really thought about that, it just turned out like that... The music sounds a little deeper, a little less poppy."
"It's a little bit of a direction change and I think we are ready for that, we did the big Duran Duran sound on the last record, I think it's time for someting different..."

"We just do what we feel and seems to be working."

"On All You Need Is Now Mark wanted the Duran bits, chords and armonies. He wanted to rediscover the early sound... not really done that on this record, we're trying to get away from that a little bit, we just do what we feel and seems to be working."

This is not actually a new news as Nick last year, when he was asked about the new album, has expressed the intention to look back a little bit to the Notorious album [we reported about this on the last update. Do you remember this quote from the citegay.fr interview released in late 2012?]

"The band hadn't really talked about the new direction the album might take but Nick thinks "it would have to be a logical continuation of All You Need Is Now," Maybe, says Rhodes, "something a little more funk... something with one's eye on Notorious actually"

Roger continues: "We have 12 piece of music already, some are more developed than others but there's a lot of strong pieces in there and I think we are further ahead a this point than the last album. So the plan is to get it finsh this year, we would like to be quicker, and we'll be back on tour next year.

Roger compares Duran Duran to a football team such as Manchester United, he said Mark is like a the perfect coach who watch what the team is doing and the direction that it's taking. "We need a Mark Ronson that look at that and analyze where we are going as a team".

 

So how's it going with the band at the moment, what are the plans?
"New material for next year and then just get going again..."

When you gonna stop?
"When we are fit to drop."

dmc world magazine

 

Tidbit: will Roger ever write his autobiography?
”l'd like to have a go,” says the Duran Duran drummer.

”Keith Richards has always said that Charlie Watts' book would be the best Stones biography.
A drummer's perspective is always ditterent.”

 

Roger Taylor's Biography? | According to Classic Pop magazine, which published the article on the left, Roger Taylor would like to have a go. Here a transcription.

Duran Duran will celebrate the New Year by working on a new album- ”It's back to the studio in January to start the whole process all over again," reveals drummer Roger Taylor, who hopes to enlist more young talent for the follow-up to 2010's Mark Ranson-produced All You Need ls Now.
"We'd like to do another album with Mark," continues Taylor. ”He's got such a great energy and really understands the inner workings on Duran.” Meanwhile, the success of bassist John Taylor’s autobiography, in The Pleasure Groove [which we profiled with an exclusive interview last issue], has got the other Duranies dusting down their diaries. ”l'd like to have a go,” adds Roger Taylor. ”Keith Richards has always said that Charlie Watts' book would be the best Stones biography. A drummer's perspective is always ditterent.”

 

Simon Le Bon on Duran Duran's child No 14

U2 got Brian Eno, we got Mark Ronson, we bring the best out of each other

Early this year Simon said "I haven't written any lyrics during my six months hiatus, nothing. I like to work with the guys. I get my inspiration from the music, I'm sure I have got a lot of ideas moving around in my head, I didn't write much down."
But it all changed after the first two recording session as he reports on April 18th via Twitter to his about 101.500 Twitter followers:

"Sorry if it's been a bit quiet
from my corner.
Finished our second writing session.
Good stuff bubblin'away in the pipes.
Steamy!"

Simon reports from the studio! About the first pic he says "This is a photo of Nick's original Roland Jupiter 8 Think keyboard solo which opens Save A Prayer". We just wonder if that has been used on the new tracks...

He's such a teaser! About the second pic he says: "This is where we're at [on March 14 he tweets a pic of the Pro Tools screen]

 

"Simon has very unique sense of melody and his lyrics sometimes can be very reliable
and sometimes beautifully abstract."
.........................................................................................................................Nick Rhodes 2013

"The music and lyrics take on greater significance."

"People need change as they grow older, although they might hold an candle for us in the heart, as they say. As people would say to us when we got back together. They`ve grown older and have to find different things they like about us in the set - without feeling stupid.
"That means the music and lyrics take on greater significance."

You will find interesting also the tweet right that leaves us all with the question: was that a new Duran Duran song or just one of the numerous projects that Mr Rhodes is working on? In any case we are all dying to listen this one...

"Surreally Odd Simon"

I like putting hair on my face.

"I've got some pretty adverse press for it in this country, and you know what?!
I don't give a fuck what anybody else think of it,
I really don't!
It's my face, i do what I like with it."

 

 

Nick Rhodes on Duran Duran's child No 14

‘Life's what happens when you're making other plans'

All Transcriptions by Salvo

We're still like an arts school band | It's funny to me to think it's three decades now as it sort of seems as if it was yesterday. I honestly don't know how it's gone so quickly, but I have to say we've had a pretty interesting ride along the way.
It's never what you expect - as the cliché goes, ‘Life's what happens when you're making other plans'. In our case, we’ve never quite known what we were going to do next. I think everybody sort of thinks that we maybe had a grand plan but we're still like an arts school band.
We sort of sit there in the studio when we’re starting a new project and say 'ok, let's take everything off the blackboard: what shall we do?'. [from the Nicole Thompson interview]

Duran Duran is a very different unit | We do very much work together. We all play different roles I suppose one of my roles is to try bring something different to a song, to try shaping, making it sounds different, but Roger and John are for me the greatest rhythm section in the world.
That’s why I never felt any need to work with anyone else, they are so adaptable and so tied, Simon has a very unique sense of melody and his lyrics sometimes can be very reliable and sometimes beautifully abstract so it’s a real unusual team we have. [Absolute 80s]

We've always followed our instincts and sometimes
it worked commercially,
and really connected
with an audience,
other times l think we've been
successful artistically,
but it hasn't connected as much commercially.

l wouldn't know how to do it another way. Some people say 'well you just go into a room and write a hit' but l don‘t think it’s like that and l think the public sense that.

About Mark Ronson | We had a lot fun doing the last record with Mark. So it seemed to be an easy choice to say why don't we try to do it again. If you find someone where you have that kind of chemistry, particularly being at this point in your career, for us being on album 14 or something, then it's better to stick with it if you can than search around to find something else. And I also have no fear that we will come up with something very different with Mark. I don't think it will be an absolute replica of the last album. We're not looking to reinvent the history of music. But I'm sure we'll change direction a bit and try some different things out. So we are going to start a bit of writing in March and then we start work with Mark a little bit in April. But we tend to do it in bursts, spend couple of weeks together and then go away, write some lyrics, fiddle with some things and then get back together again a month or so later.

“What’s good about him is he gets the roots of what Duran Duran is about. The sort of pop culture that we draw from, the music we grew up with, the music that we like now, the groove stuff; he’s a very talented guy,” [sabotagetimes.com]

I think he was the perfect person for us on the last album - stylistically, musically, reference-wise, his knowledge of everything: from the greatest grooves to the best rock music, electronic music, hip-hop and pop. He's perfect for us because we're incredibly eclectic. We don't function without a style guru. [GQ]

About Duran Duran's longevity | “I don’t know. I always remember Mick Jagger saying to me, when I met him early on in our career, ‘what you’ve got to do is you’ve got to stick at it, you’ve got to turn up, show up and that’s half the battle’; and I think really what it means is, you have to believe it and keep believing it because some times are not as easy as others.” said Nick “Sometimes you have to really work a lot harder to bring something to realisation, and other times it comes easy, and so if you’re in the mind set where you are able to accept that, and you like the people you’re working with or the sounds you’re making then I think that helps make it work. I like everybody in the band, we’re friends, we’ve had an amazing time in the band.” [sabotagetimes.com]

During the creative process
I’m usually the instigator.


I like to stir things up and make things unbalanced. That’s when you get the most interesting scientific results from your experiments. If you follow formulas it becomes incredibly dull, but if you actually look at things from a different perspective, you can usually carve out something different. I still believe there are many ways within music to create different combinations of instrumentation and arrangements. This is what I’m most interested in, of course. I love the composition of songs. I always like to invent; I’m not always successful. At its best, when I have a good day and the great song god in the sky looks kindly upon me, it’s a day when I have done something I haven’t heard before.
"if somebody asked me what would I make the record about now,
I would say genetics,
and how it with merge with technology and nanotechnology: that's the next stage
of the future to me." NR

 

 

Rod Temperton, Grace Jones, Brandon Flowers: names that comes to mind for future collaborations.

I’m a huge admirer of Grace Jones in many, many ways.
She came out of the fashion industry,
made a disco record and then went on to make three classic records.

It was entirely original and everyone in Duran Duran loves Grace Jones.
We’ve played her records more than most other artists.

I also think Grace is one of the most fascinating performers out there.


According to this press release on the new album the band has various collaborators and many people involved in the project. Let's see what names has been made so far by the guys, names that might turn up real collaborations one day or another. You never know, as Nick says?!

This tweet of Simon from April 3rd made me think...

"Visited super producer & songwriter extaordinaire Rod Temperton [check out his body of work]. DD paying homage to a true musical hero."

Rod Temperton wrote and composed Off The Wall by Michael Jackson. Nick considers that album one of his 13 best album ever

Of course, mind flies thinking to a possible collaboration with the extraordinay man behind many of Mickael Jackson's [Donna Summer and many others] hit singles... Especially after listening to the latest Kafe where John says that Mark might produce a part of the new work, maybe half or maybe just some songs.

Temperton, the man behind the Michael Jackson classic Thriller, has recently been working on Mica Paris' new album.

We assume that the band is really open to collaborations.
Nick, for example, was recently asked "Are there any other contemporary artists you'd love to work with?"

"We worked with Kelis on the last album, which was sort of great - I think I'd like to work with her again. Grace Jones I can't get enough of, I always think she's contemporary. Years ago Brandon Flowers came on-stage and did "Planet Earth" with us and his voice and Simon's voice together are actually really quite a good blend. So I thought, one day, it'd be fun to do something if The Killers were up to it. You never know."

 

No plans to play any shows this year says Nick:
"We do wanna complete the new album, we literally just started writing, that’s usually a 12 months process… maybe next year"
Absolute 80s interview

 

 

John Taylor on Duran Duran's child No 14

"I think we are gonna write some good songs this year"

During the promotional trip in Copenhagen
for the release of the danish version
of In The Pleasure Groove,
John said that he and the rest of the band has been given by Mark Ronson
a tape filled with today's music:

"a mixtape, you know, five hours of new music,
to give us a sense of what the kids are listening to."

On April 17th John, through the microphones of TV2, the danish TV channel, is all positive about the future of the band when the interviewer asks the question:

"Where do you think duran duran will be in about 10 years?"
I think we might still be working actually in 10 years time, we’re writing songs for the new album now, it's kinda like a marriage, you kinda are tempted to start a new one every year but then is ‘why would I do that?’ because these people knows me so well and actually there’s something about intimacy, going further into each other, that is kinda interesting, I think we are gonna write some good songs this year and hopefully would be back on stage next year.

How are you these days?
Good. We are currently working on a new Duran Duran album.

How far are you?
We are still in the initial stage. We are about to find out how it should sound and what direction we should go. We've got Mark Ronson again. He is fantastic. He has good taste and constantly force you to do your best. [Translation from the mx.dk interview April 2013]

A Blog from John March 18th, 2013 duranduran.com

John takes a distance to protect the creative process | Now the time has come for Duran Duran to enter the studio once again and I can only liken the process to hibernation. In this instance, for me to bring you new music, I must gather and store my thoughts until they are ready to come out after a creative Winter. The process is both a rewarding and tricky one and I find I have to keep my ideas and thoughts to myself, in order for songs to develop. This year myself and the rest of the band, are engaged in a number of potentially cool creative projects, but they are all too under-developed to discuss at this stage.

 

Dom Brown on Duran Duran's child No 14

"I think it's gonna be a great one!"

 

"For the recent Duran Duran album, that I co-wrote, I hope that my contribution to the music, melody and arrangements helped inspire Simon Le Bon who is chief lyricist."

Guitarrist Dom Brown, in the band since 2006, is part of the writing and recording team for album #14. In November Dom has made the transition from his home studio to a full blown studio. It's a 2 rooms studio in South West London, including a live room and a control room.
That's also the studio where the band has started jamming/writing back in March.

Guitar Bass magazine has recently interviewed Dom about his studio, his guitar collection, his solo work and being in Duran Duran. I transcribed an excerpt of the most interesting parts.

Dom about songwriting | ‘I don’t have a format for writing songs... it can be a riff or lyrics, whatever comes first’

With Duran Duran we just jam with a clean slate and literally see what comes out of the blue, then work on that. ‘But I think it’s essential to have a good acoustic for songwriting. I have two Taylor acoustics which I find very inspirational indeed...

Dom about being in Duran Duran | It’s cool to play in a band that in the ’80s were the biggest British pop/rock band to hit the USA since the Beatles.
May roots are blues-based, but I have a catchy, well-structured song with the verse-chorus-verse format. I signed up full-time with Duran Duran in 2006 and have played to sell-out arenas with them ever since, including a two-week run in London’s Wembley Stadium for the Princess Diana memorial concert.
Duran songs vary quite a lot when it cames to construction and they way they need to sound. For live work I’m always swapping back and forth humbuckers to single coils.
I’m a total analogue man when it cames to sound, and would never go down the amp or guitar
modelling road.


What process do you go through to create your music?
I don’t have any one particular process as ideas come in various forms and are then developed accordingly. Most typically I will start with some chords or a riff that inspires me and then search for interesting melodies. Lyrics usually come next, though I have started with the lyric first on some occasions.[From 30 seconds with… Dom Brown]


On the left, Dom Brown and Roger Taylor going on stage at the Live Celebration Concert at Hyde Park on July 27, 2012 in London, one of the most exciting moments of the band last year.

On March 16th Dom showed all his enthusiasm about being in the studio with the guys:

"What a great and productive 2 weeks with Duran Duran
and Mark Ronson at my studio!"

and on April 4th he said

"Good couple of days with Duran and Mark Ronson
getting songs together for the new album...
I think it's gonna be a great one!"

 

 


John's forgotten bass:
I have to hide it away when he comes to jam in the studio!

I keep a few bass guitars at close quarters in the studio purely for recording, such as this wonderful 2006 Alleva Coppolo KPB4 Classic 4, designed around a P-bass and made by Jimmy Coppolo in Upland, California. It’s just one of those basses that you know you can reach out and grab and get the sound that's in your head.

lt's beautifully made, with a European alder body, a maple neck and an African rosewood fingerboard, and it plays and sounds greats It has "JT"’ on the headstoek as it was made for Duran’s bassist John Taylor, but it’s been here so long that I hope he’s forgotten about it. I have to hide it away when he comes to jam in the studio!

 

Duran's only public performance of 2013

“The idea was to try and create, on the fly, layers of images permeating Duran Duran on the stage, a world of experimentation and some happy accidents.” David Lynch

Press Release from Arclight Films

Duran Duran Concert Film Snatched Up by Arclight Films

Duran Duran Unstaged, a collaborative effort between the rock group and filmmaker David Lynch, has been picked up by Arclight Films. Duran Duran will be making the trek to Cannes for AmfAR’s 20th anniversary Cinema Against AIDS event on May 23, 2013 while Arclight presents the movie to potential distributors at Cannes.

“We’re honored to be representing this unique film, and working with such an incredible team of entertainment industry professionals, whose artistic endeavors have had such a profound effect on people all over the world,” stated Gary Hamilton, Managing Director of Arclight Films. “Duran Duran Unstaged is a breakthrough in movie-making. It’s an experience that marries the arts of film and music in a distinctly creative and refreshing manner that will appeal to audiences worldwide.”

The film was shot at the Mayan Theatre in LA and includes special guests Mark Ronson, Kelis, Gerard Way [My Chemical Romance] and Beth Ditto [Gossip]. Duran Duran Unstaged marks only the second time a concert by the group has been shot in high def, and the Cannes screening will be the premiere of the director’s cut of the film. The original cut screened once via live online stream on YouTube and Vevo. “The idea was to try and create, on the fly, layers of images permeating Duran Duran on the stage,” said director David Lynch. “A world of experimentation and some happy accidents.”

“We were all beyond delighted that David Lynch agreed to direct this show for us and knew that he would create something that wouldn’t look like anything you’ve ever seen before,” said Duran Duran’s Simon Le Bon. “It was a dream come true, quite frankly. We are all such huge fans of his work and think he has a creative vision like no other.”


According to this website tomorrow's event in Cannes will be livestreamed at lovegold.com

Check out pics of Simon and Nick at the Cavalli Yacht party held yesterday in Cannes here

Famous Last Words

What do you see in the future for Duran Duran?

I suppose it'll be more things but in a different format or different way, possibly visually -
TV or movies would be interesting. I think our web presence will grow enormously.
What I hope for more than anything is that we keep making better albums and keep doing better shows because that’s what you keep going for.
I have no doubt in my mind that our shows now are much better than they were 10 years earlier. You don't lose that, you should learn more as you go along — you get better at it.
Going back to when I saw The Rolling Stones, I thought 'wow, this is the reason why,
now I get it completely' because they had this beautiful understanding of what the audience wanted and how to make them excited.

Nick Rhodes

 

 

The only aim of this online-fanzine is to celebrate Duran Duran and their members. This is a non-profit activity and there are not commercial purposes behind the existence of the site. This webzine is just a positive place to share love, passion, stories, news and pics among Duran Duran fans. Any Duran Duran fan is welcomed to submit reports, reviews, news, pics, etc.

www.duranasty.com is a fan-site made with passion from a fan to all the fans of Duran Duran on Planet Earth.

Contact the editor and webmaster salvo@duranasty.com if you want to use any of them | the life and times of D u r a n a s t y All rights reserved

Official Duran Duran website www.duranduran.com | Fan Community duranduranmusic.com

Thank you Duran Duran for being a daily source of inspiration with your Art