Two Words: A Durmanie’s Perspective3October 22nd, 2012
Please allow me to introduce myself. My name is Scott Kathan. I’ve been a DD fan since ’81 (first concert was them at The Greek; 7/27/82). Top 6 fave songs: Late Bar, Pretty Ones, New Religion, Too Late Marlene, Land and Beautiful Colours. Fave member? Nick, of course.
I have composed scores of mental blogs about Duran Duran, but this is my first tangible, public writing about the lads from Birmingham.
Since the tender age of a mere 19 summers long, I have been more than a fan of them. Not anywhere near obsession, mind you… but I’m far from apathetic when it comes to the band.
As you may have already surmised, it’s not easy for a male in today’s society (both then and now) to be an avid supporter of Duran Duran. I’ve even been beaten up for admitting that John Taylor is a very attractive man.
All kidding aside, there is a time in all people’s lives when you experience something that resonates on your heart’s frequency…or when you know, in that split second, that you will remember this moment for the rest of your life. The first time that I heard D², I heard/felt this almost-audible “click” in me, as if something profound had shifted the bedrock of my soul.
I would be so bold as to say that I “get” Duran Duran; but much more importantly, they “get” me. Don’t ask me how it’s possible, it just is. Some things are better left unsleuthed. When I heard my first DD song (“Friends of Mine”, in case you’re wondering), I sat there stunned. My unspoken thoughts…verbalized, tangible, audible? Someone who thinks the way that I do? Inconceivable!
And not just the lyrics, either. The overall composite there-ness of the band. Evocative, shiny, sexy, wry, honest and English. Enough stream-of-consciousness words to be able to wonder as to meaning. Spot-on grace notes on all 5 fronts. Perfectly meshed, sung and produced, this music, replete with caramel swirls of audio ecstasy… simply incredible.
Music will speak to you… if you are willing to listen. There’s been many a time where I’ve repeated a DD song to catch a lyric, and couldn’t do so. However, when I drop the intensity and just listen… or even listen bemusedly, that’s when the aforementioned lyric or chord or sound gets into my soul via my ear. The little-known phenomena of psychoacoustics plays a large part on all DD records. Well, at least that’s my opinion.
I don’t like to compare DD releases to each other. I suppose it’s the fact that each of the albums stand (or fall) alone on their own. Most folks will invariably compare to Rio, which is doing the band and themselves a disservice. Close your eyes, open your mind and wipe the audio slate clean. Each new listen to any song from them allows me to take the trip all over again.
As in any relationship (and if you are a Duranie, make no mistake…this is definitely a long term thing), there’s give and take. One of the things that I constantly forget is that the band ages at the same rate that we do. It’s probably as much of a learning curve for them as it is for us. Yes, as fans, we put them where they are today… and in reciprocity, they have affected all of our lives as well. Can you imagine what that must be like? To know that millions of people are going to listen to your creation/output? Man, I’m glad I’m along for the ride!
I wouldn’t be so pretentious as to say that Duran Duran are the clockbeat of my life, but I will say that they are unknowingly responsible for the quantization of it. Time and time again, when I felt like no one cared or would listen… I KNEW Duran Duran would be there for me. It’s a quiescient feeling of peace to know that. No matter what, I’ll never be alone. No one can take them away from me.
A few examples of greatness: from the Saudadian guitar work of “Land” to the percolating random note generator prevalent in “Rio” to the bent, looped vocal slur in “Still Breathing”, the perfectly placed (out of time, no less) rimshot in “Breath after Breath” to the bass slide in “Hold Back the Rain” (Kershenbaum re-edit, of course)…these things exist. They are there for us to experience. Frozen in waveforms for perfect preservation.
Kudos and thanks to all of you in the band. Past member or present, you were/are part of something incredibly special…and personally, my life has changed for having DD in my heart.
Oh, almost forgot…the meaning of the title of this blog. When people ask me why I listen to them…or what I see in them, I have an invariable answer: “It’s Duran”. Non plus ultra…mirabile visu.
99% of this I would love to copy, paste, and take credit as my own, but I wouldn’t dare. I know exactly what you mean. Kuddos to putting it into words.
YOU RULE SCOTT!!!!!!!!
Can you hear me clapping all the way from Argentina?
Well put and likewise.
They (all members) have created this magnificent music invention that is Duran Duran, and I they’ve changed my life deeply from the first moment I heard them/ saw them on my TV.
Thanks for putting in writting the indescribable Duranie vibe.