Liberty (album)

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Liberty
Studio album by Duran Duran
Released 20 August 1990 (1990-08-20)
Recorded 1989–1990
Genre Pop rock, new wave
Length 50:26
Label Capitol (US/Canada)
Parlophone/EMI
Producer Duran Duran and Chris Kimsey
Duran Duran chronology
Decade: Greatest Hits
(1989)
Liberty
(1990)
Duran Duran
(1993)
Singles from Liberty
  1. "Violence of Summer (Love's Taking Over)"
    Released: 23 July 1990 (1990-07-23)
  2. "Serious"
    Released: 1 October 1990 (1990-10-01)
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 1/5 stars[1]
Entertainment Weekly C−[2]
Rolling Stone 3/5 stars[3]

Liberty is the sixth studio album by Duran Duran, released on 20 August 1990 (1990-08-20). It entered the top 10 in the UK albums chart, and garnered a #6 hit for the single "Serious" in Japan.

Recording[edit]

Liberty is the first Duran Duran album to feature songwriting credits outside the original five band members. Guitarist Warren Cuccurullo and drummer Sterling Campbell were made permanent band members and given songwriting credits, although Campbell would leave in early 1991, before the band began work on their subsequent hit The Wedding Album.

Writing and rehearsing for the album took place intermittently between May and July 1989; demo sessions took place in August and September, and final recording began on 9 October at Olympic Studios, with producer Chris Kimsey and engineer Chris Potter. Recording, production and overdubbing of the many keyboard and vocal layers dragged on until March 1990, and the result was an album that many fans and critics considered bland and overproduced.[4]

In a 1998 interview with Goldmine magazine, bassist John Taylor admitted that he was struggling with his drug addictions during recording of the album. He said, "When we were in rehearsal, it seemed like we had a great album, but we weren't able to parlay it into a great album in the studio, whatever. I can just remember smoking hash oil, that's all I can really remember about making that album." [5]

Vocalist Simon Le Bon commented "We went into a barn in Sussex and started jamming away, and before we got finished, it was like, 'Right we've got the album, let's go and record it now.' And I don't think we got it right; I don't think we were paying enough attention. We were quite self-conscious at the time as well, the way things had been going, and it kind of made us stand outside of ourselves to do the album. But out of that came two of the best songs Duran's ever come up with, 'Serious' and 'My Antarctica,' they're really, really beautiful songs. I don't think it's a bad album, but there's definitely weak spots on it, definitely. I mean, something like 'Violence of Summer,' it just didn't have a proper chorus, great verse though. Just not paying enough attention, we just lost our concentration."[5]

A bootleg recording of the demo sessions for the album, titled Didn't Anybody Tell You? surfaced in 1999. Many unreleased, scrapped songs from the Liberty sessions were heard by the public for the first time:

  • "Bottleneck"
  • "Money on Your Side"
  • "Dream Nation"
  • "In Between Woman"
  • "Worth Waiting For"
  • "My Family" (played live 1989)

When asked about the bootleg, John Taylor said, "I like coming across things that I've forgotten about. That I've forgotten that we recorded. That's what's really exciting about the Didn't Anybody Tell You bootleg, because there's so many songs on there that never got finished. They just take me back to that moment. Actually, what I like about that album is that the Liberty album - when we were rehearsing it, when we were writing it was gonna be a great album. I really felt it was gonna be a great album. When we got in the studio I fell apart and the production just wasn't right. It turned out to be a very mediocre album, but at the demo stage, which is what that [bootleg] album is all about, I think there's a great album in there. Could have been great songs."[6]

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Violence of Summer (Love's Taking Over)" – 4:22
  2. "Liberty" – 5:01
  3. "Hothead" – 3:31
  4. "Serious" – 4:21
  5. "All Along the Water" – 3:50
  6. "My Antarctica" – 5:01
  7. "First Impression" – 5:28
  8. "Read My Lips" – 4:30
  9. "Can You Deal With It" – 3:47
  10. "Venice Drowning" – 5:13
  11. "Downtown" – 5:23

Bonus disc (Japan only)[edit]

As with the previous release of Big Thing, Toshiba-EMI would release Liberty in a two-disc set, with a 3-inch CD (CD3) of remixes:

  1. "Yo Bad Azizi" – 3:03
  2. "Throb" – 4:25
  3. "Violence of Summer (Love's Taking Over) (The Story Mix)" – 3:18

Singles[edit]

  1. "Violence Of Summer (Love's Taking Over)" (July 1990)
  2. "Serious" (October 1990)

Personnel[edit]

Duran Duran
Additional musicians

References[edit]

  1. ^ Allmusic review
  2. ^ Entertainment Weekly review
  3. ^ Rolling Stone review
  4. ^ Musicfolio Reviews: Duran Duran
  5. ^ a b Green, Jo-Anne. "Your Mission, Barbarella: Find Duran Duran." Goldmine, Volume 24 Issue 456 (16 January 1998)
  6. ^ Interview with John Taylor, 31 August 2000. Trust the Process (Official John Taylor website).