x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 21 January 2018

Duran Duran: All You Need is Now

Duran Duran returns to form with All You Need Is Now.

(Tape Modern)


Tales of struggling artists consulting a musical Svengali have become a staple of popular music. Bob Dylan needed Daniel Lanois to wake him from his musical stupor, Rick Rubin was drafted in to steer Metallica back on course and Take That used the services of Stuart Price to return to the upper echelons of pop.

Now it is the hip producer Mark Ronson’s turn to breathe new life into Duran Duran and the result is that their 13th album is one of their best. Ronson instils a back-to-basics approach for the group, jettisoning the ill-advised experiments with euro-pop of the last album in favour of the 1980s disco rhythms and majestic choruses that are the group’s stock in trade.

The title track and lead single is effectively “son of Rio”, with Simon Le Bon’s vintage vocals soaring over Nick Rhodes’s lush keyboards, while Blame the Machines is a man versus technology ode which explodes into a giddy chorus.

The disco-tastic Too Bad You’re So Beautiful and Runaway Runaway are Duran Duran at their decadent best. Le Bon may not be the most gifted singer but the ballads in All You Need is Now confirm he is peerless in the delivery of an earworm-prompting melodic hook. Effortless and fun, then: All You Need is Now is a welcome return to form.


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