Red Carpet Conversation
The Duran fan community can be many things, but at it’s best it’s like a night in a bar with your friends hashing it out over opinions. One of the albums that generates strong opinions is Red Carpet Massacre. Let’s face it – as Duran fans we often have a downer on the flops. Liberty, Pop Trash and Red Carpet Massacre are the under-stairs unmentionables, while The Wedding Album and Rio swan around in the penthouse suite of the Duran mansion (Thank You is consigned to the coal-shed).
It was RCM that got our attention this evening on Twitter, with, who else?, @BoysMakeNoise starting it all off:
Here’s how it went. Enjoy the conversation and join us next time!
When I heard that they were teaming up with Timbaland I was excited. And I loved Nite Runner and Falling Down. I do like Skin Divers and Red Carpet Massacre but the rest of the I don’t bother.
For me I started questioning things a bit around Skin Divers and/or Tempted. Falling Down would have been a dull moment but I had already heard that so it wasn't a surprise so I carried on listening....
Aaagh...!!! That's the other one with that ANNOYING, REPETITIVE NOISE in the background (like someone keeps falling down and can't get up to stop it). Total UGHNESS.
I know I’m probably in the minority but Skin Divers, Nite Runner, Zooming In and Last Man Standing were the songs that I didn’t connect with. I applaud the effort and experimentation but they didn’t hit my ears the right way. Zooming In could have been ok but it felt way underdeveloped. .. Box Full of Honey is like one of the coolest DD tracks that I always seem to forget about. Totally doesn’t fit on RCM but that’s a great jam!
The Valley is a brilliant opening but the title track was just awful shouty stuff, lyrically clever but truthfully I still don’t like it. Simon’s delivery is poor. I don’t think he can carry off punk vocally. Then we had a Justin track, after that it generally improves again.
I think the title track is absolutely brilliant I see it as an homage to their punk roots... I think it feels like a raw unapologetic version of Careless Memories which makes me SO HAPPY. It’s been my ringtone since it’s release.
I enjoy it. I think some people don't realize they can have humor in their songs. This is very tongue in cheek.
The title track is one of the best songs off of that album, actually. But to answer your question — I think the album really lost me at Nite Runners and Skin Divers. Those two songs don’t work for me. Much of the album sounds like it was recorded in a hurry. It’s just not their best work. There are good songs on there though. I think that’s my problem with the album, actually. It doesn’t flow the way Paper Gods or even AYNIN does. It’s very fragmented. Unpolished. The songs don’t necessarily go well together. And Timbaland. Ugh. Nope.
I do think Cry Baby Cry being included would have helped the album a lot.
Yes, I would have liked it more initially, though then we are back to Duran staples in sound? Its probably no harm to consider that the band are pretty much a side project of themselves a lot of the time, if a bit less so these days.
I am on the list of people that enjoyed it. Hearing the full album played live in NY cemented my love for it.
I really 'got it' after seeing the tour, too. I could throw a rock at the last 3 albums and find a song I liked better than Skin Divers. I feel like I can see where it was heading but it seemed to have missed its exit, thereby landing in an adjacent, blander neighborhood. It's not nearly as sexy as it thinks it is.
Skin Divers just felt so lifeless and devoid of melody. Felt like they were trying to be something that they weren’t - which is why I like AYNIN so much because they were embracing who they are... oh well, I know a lot of people like Skin Divers. Just not for me.
I think maybe that adventurous feel comes from how fast they had to write it. They have a tendency to bog themselves down when they overwork things. Some of their best work was done on the fly. Like HLTW and Secret Oktober. One day is about as "on the fly" as it gets.
Not comparing myself to DD but the best songs I’ve ever written were completed in minutes/hours. If I press a song over days & weeks - generally I’m overthinking and the spark gets snuffed out. The trick is to capture the idea & then get out of the way while muse does it’s work.
Always #TheValley. It's one of the great songs on the Red Carpet Massacre album. The title song is pretty awesome too. However, kudos, praise hands, happy dance to The Valley!
Box Full of Honey is like one of the coolest DD tracks that I always seem to forget about. Totally doesn’t fit on RCM but that’s a great jam!
If I had to choose I might pick that one as my favorite from the album. She's Too Much and Box/Honey were my original standouts. I think Paper Gods (the album) more successfully achieved what RCM might have been aiming for.
I agree 100%. It feels cohesive for me where RCM didn’t.
Controversy warning...RCM is contemporary. Paper Gods is contemporary-lite (for old people who don’t like new music) If their raison d’être is to be current, then PG is, in my opinion, less successful. But it’s an easier listen for 80’s attuned ears.
At least a couple of the band members described the recording of RCM as torturous, though. I feel no joy in it. And I don't mean the songs have to be happy, I mean I don't hear a spark in most of the album. I hear excitement and inspiration in more of Paper Gods. IMHO.
I really need to revisit the whole album. Falling Down, title track, and Nite-Runner are the tunes that stuck out initially.
I actually like the album, just not Nite Runner and Skin Divers....probably on my own on that one.
Skin Divers seems like a love it or hate it affair. After it had been out for a while I put the songs in a different order, one that made more sense to me, and it really helped me like the album more.
And the final word goes to @Bluesilvahalo who responded to a Cherry Lipstick tweet thus:
One person's trash is another's treasure, the beauty is there will always be a Duranie that loves Rio and one that loves 911 Is A Joke. Somewhere.... you know out there. It’s a big world.
Mood Board @be_my_icon
Of course if you do want more Red Carpet Massacre, try our 5 Star Album Review by Ruth Galvin.