The Future Past is already here.
Duran Duran has created hit after hit throughout their impressive music career over the last 40 years, so it is with great excitement that they announce their 15th studio album ‘Future Past’. Although the album is set for global release later on October 22nd, they have given the public a sneak peek of what their new album will entail with the release of their single ‘Invisible’ and its accompanying music video.
They announced just a few collaborators who appear on the album including Graham Coxon of Blur who plays the guitar, Mike Garson on the piano (he worked with David Bowie and Nine Inch Nails) and Lykke Li will add some guest vocals. Duran Duran will release more names in the upcoming months and with such a promising start, the anticipation climbs.
The band also has some incredible producers. To name a few are Mark Ronson, Erol Alkan and Giorgio Moroder (he created scores for several musicians such as David Bowie and Kylie Minogue).
All of these incredible collaborators promise an incredible album.
The brand-new music video is another showstopping example of their trailblazing ability to intertwine music with emerging technology. ‘Invisible’ is the first of its kind as it was created by Huxley – an Artificial Intelligence.
Yes, an A.I created that wonderfully dreamy and yet edgy video. The band members’ faces are blurred and shadowed, while the overall visual discourse has an undertone of purple. The transitions in the beginning are fantastic and meld together in a dreamscape, where shapes are distinguishable for a moment before they melt away to be replaced with something new. The second half of the video takes on a haunting and edgy side where the shapes become disturbing but more memorable, rather like a nightmare. Huxley creates these dreamscapes through a technique called ‘active inference’, which was created by an established and influential neuroscientist Karl Friston. Huxley was able to create this video as it translated the emotional tone of the song into images by using iconic symbolism and concepts already rooted in the human language.
So what of the music itself? This throwback to the 80’s brings all the classic tunes from that era to the forefront of our minds. It is best to listen to this video through headphones as Duran Duran collaborated with Sony’s 360 Reality Audio to create a brand-new and improved music experience. Nick Rhodes explained that ‘(a)s a band we’ve always looked to new technology for a way to enhance our sound. The Sony 360 system brings a new and different dimension to the tracks.’ It certainly does. Sony used spatial sound technologies to have sounds and parts of the track ‘bounce’ from different parts of the headphones – just like how the band would sound if they were playing in the same room. The first of its kind as a collaboration, all the tracks on the album will feature Sony 360 mixes, and is on supported streaming services such as Amazon Music HD.
Speaking on their forthcoming album, and latest single, Simon Le Bon also reveals to RedHanded Magazine: “When we first went into the studio in late 2018, I was trying to persuade the guys that all we needed to do was write two or three tracks for an EP. Four days later, with the nucleus of 25 plus strong songs in the can, that all deserved development, I realised we’d be in it for the long haul, but that was before COVID. So here we are in 2021 with our 15th studio album, FUTURE PAST straining at the leash. Music by Duran Duran with Graham Coxon, Lykke Li, Mike Garson, Erol Alkan, Mark Ronson, Giogio Moroder (for God’s sake!). I’m not saying it’s epic, but well ... yes I am. We open with the song ‘INVISIBLE’, which began as a story about a one-sided relationship but grew into something much bigger, because “a voiceless crowd isn’t backing down”. John and Roger’s rhythm track is mountainous; Nick’s melodies twist and soar; Graham’s guitar is a knife. It feels exactly right for right now.”
The album will be available on all digital platforms. However, avid fans may wish to purchase the Deluxe hardback book CD which will feature three additional tracks. The official album store will offer exclusive vinyl records as well as cassette formats for those wishing a true 80’s throwback. There are even a few limited edition signed prints. You can preorder here.
Be sure to catch them on Sunday May 23rd at the 2021 Music Billboard Awards!