Duran Duran’s All You Need is Now: Best Album of 2011

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Duran Duran's All You Need is Now: Best Album of 2011
For the First Time in Decades, Duran Duran is on Top Again
By Rod Little, Yahoo! Contributor Network

Back in the 80's there was creativity, a very upbeat sound, and a band called Duran Duran. They ruled the music video channels, radio, and club scene, and gave us dozens of top hits. As music evolved, they faded away, resurfacing a few times for comebacks, notably Ordinary World in 1993, and Astronaut in 2004. And then they disappeared again into the background.

In 2011, they have reemerged with a powerful new album: All You Need is Now. This is a strong, upbeat set of songs, with the same smooth flavor that kept Duran Duran on the charts back in the 80s and early 90s. They have recaptured their original sound, and it's good to hear again! The words and music come together with a special finesse on every track. It's familiar ground for 80's fans, but maybe a very new concept for younger fans.

Many of the songs from "All You Need is Now," could easily fit onto the "Rio" Album. In fact, "Leave a Light Light On" and "Girl Panic," two of the strongest tracks, really seem like extra tracks that might have been cut from either "Rio" or "Seven and the Ragged Tiger" back in the 80s.

Any fan of the 80s will appreciate this new album, but I think other fans will enjoy it as well. The songs are well written, beautifully arranged, and show a heart and soul that's been missing from music over the past few years. This is likely the best new album since Fleetwood Mac's "Say You Will" in 2003. We haven't had a good album from any band yet in this decade; so "Now" is a breath of fresh air. Many music fans have worried that music is slowly dying off in favor of glitz, glamor, and gimmicks. They may be right, but apparently there is some good music yet to come, as proved by this new Duran Duran album.
Lyrics and real musicians

The title track is a joy ride, and it's riff is likely to stay with you: very nice and catchy. "The Man Who Stole a Leopard," is a highly synthesized and mysterious song that brings me back to days of neon clubs and soft lighting. The words have a story to tell, based on a1965 movie. They use real lyrics, and not just a repeat of 4 words over and over (the trend these days).

No rap was used in the making of this album, and no costumed dancers, so it won't appeal to most young listeners. I hope a few of them will give it a try, nonetheless. This is what music can be, if we use lyrics, meaning, and inventive sounds, and if the musicians actually know how to play instruments. The strength of the songs makes it their best album since "Rio" and "Ragged Tiger." The positive reviews seem to concur.

Kudos go to Duran Duran for this new album. Thanks guys!