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Duran Duran

Dreaming of Your Cars - 1979 Demos Part 2

Review by Gary Hill

This is a four-song EP that runs about 12 minutes or so long. These tracks were recorded by an early lineup of the band. Co-founders John Taylor and Nick Rhodes were on board. Rhodes was handling keyboards, as he did in the more famous incarnation of the group. Taylor, on the other hand, is credited for guitars. Given that there is no bass player listed, and he was their bass player in the later lineups, I assume that includes bass in that credit. Drummer Roger Taylor is that third member here that would go on to be part of the more famous lineup. Andy Wickett, though, is the singer and also plays piano on these songs.

The music here is less polished and more rudimentary than the sound that would later become the group's trademark. Of course, the vocals are different, too. The thing is, it's still recognizable as Duran Duran to me. These songs are all interesting and entertaining in their own way. Perhaps this is a more important release in terms of its historic value, though.

This review is available in book (paperback and hardcover) form in Music Street Journal: 2021  Volume 1. More information and purchase links can be found at: garyhillauthor.com/Music-Street-Journal-2021.

Track by Track Review
Dreaming of Your Cars
There is a real reggae element to the guitar arrangement on this. The keyboards that paint textures over the top are so classy. This really does feel recognizable as Duran Duran despite the less than perfect production and different lead singer. I dig the instrumental movement on the number quite a bit, too.
Love Story
I love the rhythm section on this number. The bass work, in particular, on this is really great. The keyboards are trademark Duran Duran, too. There is an exploratory vibe to this. It has a real soaring energy, too. Again, imagining this with different vocals it becomes very obviously Duran Duran.
X Disco
The bass on this is seriously funky. The rest of the arrangement has a soaring, almost spacey sound to it. This is high energy and almost freeform in feel.
To the Shore
This isn't a big change, but it has an almost twisted and harder rocking edge to it. It also has a spoken vocal section that takes into some seriously weird zones.
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