I love Duran Duran. I've never withheld this fact. I wore out my cassette of RIO. I had their pictures wallpapering my bedroom wall. I dreamed of going to a concert and being plucked from the audience to dance and sing back-up with the adorable lads. I even called in sick from the pizzeria so I could watch the release for the video of New Moon on Monday. I lied and said my car got stuck in snow.
Here it is some 20 years later and I want my old DD back. I have their latest release downloaded to iTunes. I tolerated it when the boys opted to split and have their separate endeavors with Arcadia and Power Station. I rocked out to the remake of Bang a Gong. I drool over John Taylor to this day. So, being the fan that I am, I will tolerate this insane collaboration with the flavor of the year: Timbaland.
I have no issues with Mr. Timba producing Red Carpet Massacre; but his trademark "aye aye" and heavy bass rhythms really get on my nerves. It takes away from the essence that is Duran Duran. Not every track on RCM has tell-tale signs of Timbaland or Timberlake. In fact, in true DD tradition, the include an instrumental - Tricked out - that gets the blood pumping.
Timbaland's dirty hand isn't so heavy that you can't recognize the beloved voice of Simon LeBon. Thank God for small favors. He sounds better than ever, truly.
I'm not sure what drove them to this collaboration. Perhaps they felt the best way to capture younger fans would be to enlist the help of the Tims (Timberlake and Timbaland). The fans of the 80s and 90s are now parents. I know I've made certain my 13 year old son is fully aware of the music that shaped the best decade ever. My personal opinion is that DD would have been fine and guitarist Andy Taylor would still be part of The Fab-Five!
My recommendation for Duran Duran for their next album is drop the pretences, get Andy to rejoin the fold and return to the basics that made me a gigantic fan to begin with.