Duran Duran are back on the charts with their 14th studio album called “Paper Gods.” The album finds the former 80’s pin-up boys at their dance, pop, funk, rock best!
“Paper Gods” has a contemporary sound that easily fits what is being played on the radio today without sounding forced or phony.
Production credits on the album vary from track to track with all songs produced by Duran Duran with help from Josh Blair, Mr. Hudson (AKA Benjamin Hudson McIldowie), Mark Ronson who produced the band’s 2011 effort “All You Need Is Now” and longtime collaborator Nile Rodgers (Arena, Notorious, Astronaut).
The band is playing as well as they did in their 80’s heyday and the first thing I noticed was how smooth Simon Le Bon’s voice sounded. Le Bon hasn’t missed a step since the band returned to excellence with 2004’s full band reunion album “Astronaut.” Andy Taylor has since departed (in 2006 to be exact) but the other 4 original members have continued to tour and record some some fine tunes for the past 11 years!
Guest players abound on “Paper Gods” including former Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist John Frusciante on 3 tracks, vocalists Janelle Monae, Jonas Bjerre and Kiesza who totally raises “Last Night In The City” to new heights of vocal excellence. Add to that a vocal/spoken word performance on “Danceophobia” by actress Lindsay Lohan who I assume one of the band members wanted to “meet” wink wink!
Highlights on the CD include the first single “Pressure Off,” the epic 7 minute opening track “Paper Gods” and “Face For Today.” There are 12 tracks in all but if you seek out all of the bonus tracks via iTunes which adds 3 and Target which adds 2 that would bring “Paper Gods” to 17 tracks of pure Duran Duran magic.
Drumroll please… 7 out of 10 drumsticks!!!