Duran Duran - song-by-song rate & discussion thread

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Blame The Machines, May 5, 2019.

  1. Paul Rymer

    Paul Rymer Forum Resident

    You have to remember that in ‘81 they hadn’t had Simon or Andy in the band for very long - maybe a year? They dumped a lot of material or significantly re-wrote it after those two joined. Only Girls On Film’s chorus and aspects of the backing of Rio made it through to the 5-piece I believe.
  2. mr_spenalzo

    mr_spenalzo Forum Resident

    Without doing a tracklist reconciliation, they probably played every song they had at the time except "Tel Aviv"? They even played "Planet Earth" twice
    negative1 likes this.
  3. Chris Bernhardt

    Chris Bernhardt Forum Resident

    Chicago IL
    I think the cover of Fame is pretty great. Good rhythm section and I like Andy Taylors contributions. I also like Colin Thrustons production for the first record in general. Dancey but detached.
  4. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle TEFL Lord

    Careless Memories - 4/5
  5. Blame The Machines

    Blame The Machines Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Fame - This sounds like it was recorded at a soundcheck or at a band jam session. There are elements of this cover version that work, but the overall effect is it sounds off kilter on record, as it has the vibe of rushing to get it done/that will do about it. 1.5/5

    I think it is fair to say that one British male popstar from the 1980s did a much better job of covering it

    Last edited: May 10, 2019
    mark winstanley likes this.
  6. Blame The Machines

    Blame The Machines Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Before we move onto the next track:

    Duran Duran is the debut studio album by English new wave band Duran Duran. It was released on 15 June 1981 by EMI.

    The album reached number three on the UK Albums Chart and remained in the UK top 100 for 118 weeks, achieving platinum status by December 1982. The initial US release was unsuccessful, though the album was reissued there in 1983 following the success of the band's second album, Rio, reached number 10 on the US Billboard 200, and spent 87 weeks on that chart. Duran Duran was certified platinum (a shipment of one million units) by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) in June 1985.

    The band wrote and recorded demos for the album at AIR Studios in 1980, while one of their main influences, the band Japan, was recording the Gentlemen Take Polaroids album just down the hall. The band was influenced by a variety of musical styles and sounds, including David Bowie, Roxy Music, Giorgio Moroder and Chic, to a sound that has been described as "space-age keyboards, post-punk guitars, disco-inspired bass lines and Le Bon's vocal croon – which was at times yelping and enthusiastic, and at other times mysterious and edgy – collided for a decidedly modern sound."

    The album was formally recorded in December 1980 at various recording studios in London (as well as Chipping Norton Studios) with record producer Colin Thurston, shortly after Duran Duran signed their record deal with EMI. In interviews, the band has recalled the struggle to continue recording after hearing of the murder of John Lennon on 8 December.

    1. "Girls on Film" - 3:30
    2. "Planet Earth" - 3:59
    3. "Anyone Out There" - 4:02
    4. "To The Shore" - 3:49
    5. "Careless Memories" - 3:53
    6. "Night Boat" - 5:25
    7. "Sound of Thunder" - 4:06
    8. "Friends of Mine" - 5:42
    9. "Tel Aviv" - 5:16
    With track 2 & track 5 already released as singles, we move onto track 1 from the debut album.
  7. Blame The Machines

    Blame The Machines Forum Resident Thread Starter

    006 Girls On Film

    "Girls on Film" is the third single by Duran Duran, released by Capitol-EMI from their eponymous debut album Duran Duran on 13 July 1981.

    The song reached Number 5 on the UK Singles Chart on 25 July. It was the band's second hit single in Australia, peaking at #11, as well as New Zealand #4. The song did not chart in the U.S. on its initial release, but it became popular and widely known there after receiving heavy airplay on MTV when the Duran Duran album was re-issued in 1983.

    The original writer Andy Wickett was paid £600 for the song and never received credit for it. When Andy wasn't working during the day he would try out his new ideas with Duran Duran. One night he wrote the melody to "Girls on Film". Whilst he sang a lyric from his notebook "girls in film they look better, girls in film always smile". John Taylor suggested that he change it to girls 'on' film. Andy told Nick Rhodes to introduce the song by playing the melody on his string machine and the song was born. They recorded the song as part of their first demo at Bob Lamb's studio in Birmingham. However Andy left the band for personal reasons and was offered £600 on condition that he signed a waiver!

    The song begins with a recording of the rapid clicking of the motor drive on manager Paul Berrow's Nikon camera.

    Over the years, "Girls on Film" has become a staple of the encores for Duran Duran's live performances, and is often the final song of a concert, during which lead singer Simon Le Bon introduces the rest of the band. It was the song Duran Duran was playing at the turn of the century, during their performance at a private party on New Year's Eve, 1999.

    The song, along with "Rio" was originally omitted from the 1984 live album Arena due to the space limitations of vinyl, in favor of newer and less familiar album material from 1983's Seven and the Ragged Tiger. Both tracks were included as bonus material in the 2004 CD reissue of Arena.

    The song fared well on the radio and the charts before the notoriously titillating video was filmed, but the controversy that ensued helped to keep the band in the public eye and the song on the charts for many weeks.

    The video (featuring topless women mud wrestling and other not-very-stylised depictions of sexual fetishes) was made with directing duo Godley & Creme, and was filmed in August just two weeks after MTV was launched in the United States, before anyone knew what an impact the music channel would have on the industry. The band expected the "Girls On Film" video to be played in the newer nightclubs that had video screens, or on pay-TV channels like the Playboy Channel. The raunchy video created an uproar, and it was consequently banned by the BBC and heavily edited for MTV. The band unabashedly enjoyed and capitalised on the controversy.

    Simon Le Bon commented in the audio interview on the Greatest DVD collection that the scandal of the music video overshadowed the song's message of fashion model exploitation.
  8. negative1

    negative1 80s retro fan

    My second favorite album after Rio, a solid 4/5 from me,
    the US re-release:

    A1 Girls On Film 3:30
    A2 Planet Earth 3:58
    A3 Is There Anyone Out There 4:02
    A4 Careless Memories 3:53
    A5 Is There Something I Should Know? 4:07
    B1 (Waiting For The) Night Boat 5:25
    B2 Sound Of Thunder 4:06
    B3 Friends Of Mine 5:42
    B4 Tel Aviv 5:16

    Total Time: 39:59

    The songs all flow well together, and really stand out as one of the great albums of the 80's,
    kicking things off for Duran Duran.

    Lots of energy, lots of cool rhythms, and sounds, and although primitive in many ways,
    and not very complex taken together, the songs don't sound dated to me.

    Yes, Japan with quiet life, and roxy musics same old scene might predate these, or be
    similar, but good in their own ways.

    The New Romantic scene would be epitomized with this album, and although it didn't
    originally make much of a dent in America, until the re-release, it still did make an
    impact on the indie charts and in the clubs.

    Here's an idea of what else was around during that time:
    by group:
    by month:
  9. SJP

    SJP Forum Resident

    Duran Duran songs have a message??? ;)

    Hard not to like this single as it checks the boxes. The only reason it suffers in my book is that I sometimes tire of singles yet curiously, that isn't the case with Planet Earth. Still, a strong 4.25/5 rating in my book.
    Blame The Machines likes this.
  10. Bluepicasso

    Bluepicasso Android Confused

    Arlington, Va
    Girls on Film - 5 out of 5, iconic and turned them into stars. Rock as its finest for me. All versions are sexy and have that mix of guitar and synth that few have achieved!
  11. Paul Rymer

    Paul Rymer Forum Resident

    Girls On Film 4/5 - my favourite is the alternative Night Version with the extended ending, as on the EU Carnival etc
  12. mr_spenalzo

    mr_spenalzo Forum Resident

    Girls On Film ★★
    First heard this in '89 on Decade, but I'd seen the title mentioned fairly often before it so this song became something mysterious like a treasure. It was mentioned in interviews, I saw it on the back of a VHS that I'd been admiring at the record store. When I finally heard it, it did not disappoint. The video, meanwhile, was something else.
    negative1 and Blame The Machines like this.
  13. mr_spenalzo

    mr_spenalzo Forum Resident

    Nowadays when I feel like some "Girls On Film" I listen to this early version

  14. Blame The Machines

    Blame The Machines Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Here is the original 1979 version featuring its original writer Andy Wickett:

    I let you decide how much of an asset Simon Le Bon was for the band from listening to this.
  15. mr_spenalzo

    mr_spenalzo Forum Resident

    I wish they'd release their MTV Unplugged on DVD/CD already. This reworking of "Girls On Film" is really something else.

  16. Mo0g

    Mo0g Forum Resident

    Careless Memories - lyrically resonated to a 14 year old boy looking for love..

    "Where are you now 'cause I don't want to meet you
    I think I'd die, I think I'd laugh at you, I know I'd cry, what am I supposed to do, follow you?
    Outside the thoughts coming flooding back now; I'm just trying to forget you
    " (as I always heard the lyric)

    Similarly with Roxy's Dance Away

    "It's funny how I could never cry, until tonight when you pass by hand in hand with another guy
    You're dressed to kill and guess who's dying
    Blame The Machines likes this.
  17. mr_spenalzo

    mr_spenalzo Forum Resident

    I won't go into the songs until it's their day, but about the debut album, I have gone through a few copies:

    In 1991 I bought the version with ITSISK instead of To The Shore (gave it to my sister)
    In 1999 I got the 1995 version with both ITSISK and To The Shore (sold)
    2004 - Remaster
    2011 - Deluxe special edition*
    2016 - Remaster on vinyl (sold)
    2017 - The same version as in 1999 to replace the one I sold

    * Version with mono camera intro (which I think is from a second batch... I understand that the first batch in 2010 has an even more screwed up error on the intro). I never listen to it anyway except for the bonus tracks, because my go-to version is the 1995 programmed to put "To The Shore" in the right place, and skip ITSISK which has no place here.
    Last edited: May 10, 2019
  18. Curveboy

    Curveboy Forum Resident

    New York City
    Girls On Film

    I don't recall if I heard this or Planet Earth first...but damn what a song and intro to the album.
    I don't think Roger gets the credit he deserves as a drummer and he should. The drum work on this track is outstanding.
    Thorpy, enro99, BadJack and 3 others like this.
  19. Paul Rymer

    Paul Rymer Forum Resident

    Yeah I have had this album a few times over the decades...
    1981 cassette - borrowed from a friend so had to return
    1982 vinyl - got scratched and then broken when stepped on by a dog in about '84
    1982 cassette - a European one with more red or orange on the cover(?) sounded terrible so the shop let me exchange it for a British one - had that for a long time
    1995 CD - the one with To The Shore in the wrong place
    Last year on holiday in Japan I picked up the 1983 reissue with ITSISK as track 1 side 1 - much more sensible than its place on many CDs.
    Blame The Machines and negative1 like this.
  20. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road

    Excellent debut
  21. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road

    This song showed me that the band certainly had the potential to be more than a fleeting pop band.
    For a pop song it had a certain sophistication that was beyond its years, in a way. There was some good synth work and drums, and the guitar was really doing some good work also. As much as I tried to resist the band and their obvious pop focus, this song made me pay more attention than I wanted to. Between this song and Careless memories I was sold on the fcat that these guys were very good.
    And the message actually wasn't lost on me either, even if the video somewhat confused that message lol
  22. negative1

    negative1 80s retro fan

    girls on film : 5/5
    total classic song, everything about it is perfect,
    the lyrics, the instruments, and of course the sexy video..

    totally agree, the original remix is a classic,
    but the alternative is harder rocking.

    thank God, they never released this... i saw them on the acoustic tour unfortunately,
    it is by far the worst they've ever sounded. some bands are just not meant to play
    their songs watered down. duran duran is the perfect example of this.

    girls on film had a long history.

    i just got the greek 12 inch with the instrumental mix last year.
    it should have been on the UK version, but did not find out about it until much
    later on..

    Duran Duran - Girls On Film (Night Version)


    Duran Duran ‎– Girls On Film (Night Version)
    EMI ‎– 062-2007176
    Vinyl, 12", 45 RPM, Maxi-Single
    Electronic, Rock, Pop
    New Wave, Synth-pop

    A Girls On Film (Night Version) 5:45
    B1 Girls On Film (Instrumental) 5:41
    B2 Faster Than Light 4:22
    Total Time: 15:48

    The Night Vesion was the alternative remix also..
    The spanish 7 inch:

    Duran Duran ‎– Girls On Film = Las Chicas En La Película
    EMI ‎– 10C 006-064.501, EMI ‎– 10C 006-064501
    Vinyl, 7", 45 RPM, Single
    Electronic, Pop

    A Girls On Film = Las Chicas En La Película 3:27
    B Faster Than Light = Más Rápido Que La Luz 4:26
    Total Time: 7:53
    The Japanese 7 inch
    Duran Duran = デュラン・デュラン* - グラビアの美少女 = Girls On Film


    they had some cool techno mixes in the 90's:

    Duran Duran ‎– Girls On Film - The Remixes
    Capitol Records ‎– 72438-58771-2-4
    CD, Single
    Electronic, Rock, Pop
    House, Synth-pop

    1 Girls On Film (Tin Tin Out Mix) 6:55
    2 Girls On Film (Salt Tank Mix) 6:29
    3 Girls On Film (16 Millimetre Mix) 7:28
    4 Girls On Film (Tall Paul Mix 1) 8:28
    5 Girls On Film (Night Version) 5:31
    6 Girls On Film (8 Millimetre Mix) 5:47

    Total Time: 40:38

    Last edited: May 10, 2019
  23. Neonbeam

    Neonbeam All Art Was Once Contemporary

    Planet Earth
    Love this song, it's the rare beast, great single and great album opener. Those camera clicks still are terrific! Even slightly more than "two minutes later"! :evil:

  24. Neonbeam

    Neonbeam All Art Was Once Contemporary

    Planet Earth
    The debut? Not a classic as "Rio" but definitely better now than in 1981, it still is brimming with that excitement that only young bands can have. It's great. But "Is There Something I Should Know" totally doesn't belong here. Its inclusion is wrong.

    1981 original: 4/5
  25. Colocally

    Colocally One Of The New Wave Boys

    Surrey BC.
    If Careless Memories was a worrying blip chartwise, this track showed that Duran Duran were more than a one hit wonder. On top of that, it was an amazing way to start the album. I am currently playing the debut for the first time in years. I have had a UK original since 84 and about 5 years ago I found a Canadian reissue with the rejigged tracklist. The debut was always a little hit and miss for me, but I am currently enjoying it.
    Last edited: May 10, 2019
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