Notorious (Duran Duran album)

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Notorious
Duran Duran - Notorious.png
Studio album by Duran Duran
Released 18 November 1986 (1986-11-18)
Recorded June–September 1986
Studio
Genre
Length 46:56
Label EMI
Producer
Duran Duran chronology
Arena
(1984)
Notorious
(1986)
Big Thing
(1988)
Singles from Notorious
  1. "Notorious"
    Released: 20 October 1986
  2. "Skin Trade"
    Released: 31 January 1987
  3. "Meet El Presidente"
    Released: April 1987
Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic2/5 stars[3]
Encyclopedia of Popular Music3/5 stars[4]
PopMatters6/10[5]
Rolling Stone3.5/5 stars[6]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide3/5 stars[7]

Notorious is the fourth studio album by English new wave band Duran Duran. It was released on 18 November 1986 by EMI. The album peaked at number 16 on the UK Albums Chart and at number 12 on the US Billboard 200. Produced by the band with Nile Rodgers, the album showcased a new musical direction for the band, emphasizing bass and brass, as exemplified by the singles "Notorious" and "Skin Trade".

In 2010, EMI released a raft of material surrounding the Notorious reissue consisting of a two-disc set, a deluxe three-disc set, a digital only EP and a digital only live album. The box set also includes remixes, live tracks and the Working for the Skin Trade live video (for the first time on DVD).

Personnel difficulties[edit]

The making of Notorious during 1986 was a difficult time for Duran Duran. The band had planned on taking a much-needed break after the success of their 1984 world tour, but all of the band members had ended up working on one of two side projects (Power Station and Arcadia). When it came time to record the new Duran Duran album, they found that drummer Roger Taylor was too exhausted to continue in the music business, while guitarist Andy Taylor had developed a taste for the spotlight, as well as for a harder, more guitar-heavy sound than the rest of Duran Duran was prepared to pursue.

The band gradually coaxed Taylor back from Los Angeles to the United Kingdom in order to begin playing on the album, but personal and creative disputes continued and much of the communication was carried on by lawyers, until Taylor ultimately left the band. In addition to now becoming a three-piece, the band also began to act as their own management during this time, having dismissed brothers Paul and Michael Berrow who had shepherded them through their first five years. Arrangements for the then-forthcoming Strange Behaviour Tour which kicked off in March 1987, as well as the tensions with Taylor, are recounted in the documentary Three To Get Ready.

During this time, Taylor began jamming with members of the American band Missing Persons who were in the midst of breaking up. Missing Persons guitarist Warren Cuccurullo, noting that Taylor did not intend to return to Duran Duran, offered his services to them instead. They hired him as a session and tour guitarist; he would later become a full member of the band in 1989.

The remaining three original band members, Rhodes, Le Bon and John Taylor continued working on the new album with Cuccurullo and producer Nile Rodgers (himself a guitarist from his days in Chic) providing the remaining guitar work. Incidentally, with material from three guitarists, the band has since found it difficult to tell what guitarist ended up playing on what finished track. Session drummer Steve Ferrone took Roger Taylor's place behind the drum kit.

In years to come, the band would refer to Notorious as their Alfred Hitchcock-inspired album. This is due to having a number of tracks titled after Hitchcock movies. In addition to the album and lead single named for the film Notorious, there was also Vertigo and Rope, the original title for "Hold Me".

Andy Taylor's participation[edit]

According to some reports, the relationship between Andy Taylor and the rest of the band had deteriorated to the point where he had to be threatened with legal action in order to get him back into the studio, but that the resulting sessions were so unpleasant for all involved that the band finally released him from any obligations to record.

According to interviews, Andy Taylor was involved in various sessions for the album, and because of this, the guitar work on a few tracks was performed by him. There is a track on his official website in which he plays guitar and sings vocals for "A Matter of Feeling". According to an interview with Cuccurullo in 2004,[citation needed] Andy Taylor also played on "American Science" the first guitar solo being Taylor's, the second Cuccurullo's.

Singles[edit]

The album's first single "Notorious" was a commercial success, reaching number two in the United States and number seven in the United Kingdom. It was the first Duran Duran single to be released with a second remix 12-inch single, led off by a remix by The Latin Rascals.

"Skin Trade" was a Bowie-flavoured track notable for Le Bon singing in a Prince-like falsetto, as well as featuring The Borneo Horns quite heavily. John Taylor has since been quoted as saying that his disillusion with the charts began when "Skin Trade" failed to reach the UK top 20.

The sleeve to the "Skin Trade" single was banned in several countries, as it featured an airbrushed naked female buttock. In the UK and US, the single was released in a plain pink/red sleeve, though the original sleeve was released in Canada and France.

To commemorate the band's 1987 Strange Behaviour Tour, several promotional-only remixes were commissioned for "Skin Trade", including the "Parisian Mix" and the "S.O.S. Dub". These were initially released on a US-only promotional 12-inch single with mixes of "Meet El Presidente" on the flip-side.

"Meet El Presidente", released to coincide with the tour in April 1987, reached #24 in the UK. It was their first single to be released on CD (catalogue number CD TOUR 1), which featured all the tracks from the 12-inch vinyl single. In the US, the single was released under the title "The Presidential Suite".

"A Matter of Feeling" was released in January 1988 as a promotional single in Brazil. Prior to this it was included on the original soundtrack to the Brazilian telenovela Mandala (1987–1988), produced by Rede Globo.[8]

To drum up further interest in the album, a collection of otherwise unavailable remixes was released on a promotional double 12-inch pack titled Master Mixes in the US and Hong Kong.

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by John Taylor, Nick Rhodes and Simon LeBon.

Side one
No.TitleLength
1."Notorious"4:18
2."American Science"4:43
3."Skin Trade"5:57
4."A Matter of Feeling"5:56
5."Hold Me"4:31
Side two
No.TitleLength
6."Vertigo (Do the Demolition)"4:44
7."So Misled"4:04
8."Meet El Presidente"4:19
9."Winter Marches On"3:25
10."Proposition"4:57

2010 digital-only releases[edit]

Remix EP
No.TitleLength
1."Skin Trade" (S.O.S Dub)7:19
2."Meet El Presidente" (Meet El Beat)5:33
3."American Science" (Meltdown Dub)7:29
4."Vertigo (Do the Demolition)" (B-Boy Mix)6:04
5."Notorious" (Latin Rascals Mix)6:24
Live at The Beacon Theater, New York City, 31 August 1987
No.TitleLength
1."Introduction/A View to a Kill" 
2."Notorious" 
3."American Science" 
4."Union of the Snake" 
5."Vertigo (Do the Demolition)" 
6."New Religion" 
7."Meet El Presidente" 
8."Election Day" 
9."Some Like It Hot" 
10."The Chauffeur" 
11."Skin Trade" 
12."Hold Me" (incorporating "Dance to the Music") 
13."Is There Something I Should Know?" 
14."Hungry Like the Wolf" 

Personnel[edit]

Duran Duran

Additional personnel

Charts[edit]

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/Sales
Canada (Music Canada)[24] Platinum 100,000^
Spain (PROMUSICAE)[25] Gold 50,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[26] Gold 100,000^
United States (RIAA)[27] Platinum 1,000,000^

^shipments figures based on certification alone

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f "A Notorious Timeline". 21 November 2016.
  2. ^ "Notorious" on All Music Guide. Retrieved on 13 August 2009
  3. ^ DeGange, Mike. "Duran Duran - Notorious; AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 29 July 2017.
  4. ^ Larkin, Colin (2011). The Encyclopedia of Popular Music (5th concise ed.). Omnibus Press. ISBN 0-85712-595-8.
  5. ^ Bergstrom, John (21 October 2010). "Duran Duran: Notorious / Big Thing". PopMatters. Retrieved 11 August 2017.
  6. ^ Caryn Ganz (October 12, 2010). "Notorious". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 11 August 2017.
  7. ^ Sheffield, Rob (2004). "Duran Duran". The Rolling Stone Album Guide (4th ed.). Simon & Schuster. ISBN 0-7432-0169-8.
  8. ^ "Mandala – Trilha sonora". Memória Globo (in Portuguese). Retrieved 2 August 2018.
  9. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992. St Ives, NSW: Australian Chart Book. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  10. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Duran Duran – Notorious" (in German). Hung Medien. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
  11. ^ "Top RPM Albums: Issue 0771". RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
  12. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Duran Duran – Notorious" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
  13. ^ "European Hot 100 Albums" (PDF). Music & Media. Vol. 4 no. 1. 10 January 1987. p. 19. OCLC 29800226. Retrieved 2 August 2018 – via American Radio History.
  14. ^ Pennanen, Timo (2006). Sisältää hitin – levyt ja esittäjät Suomen musiikkilistoilla vuodesta 1972 (in Finnish) (1st ed.). Helsinki: Kustannusosakeyhtiö Otava. ISBN 978-951-1-21053-5.
  15. ^ "Le Détail des Albums de chaque Artiste". InfoDisc (in French). Retrieved 2 August 2018. Select "DURAN DURAN" from the drop-down menu and click "OK".
  16. ^ "Offiziellecharts.de – Duran Duran – Notorious" (in German). GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
  17. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Duran Duran – Notorious". Hung Medien. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
  18. ^ "Norwegiancharts.com – Duran Duran – Notorious". Hung Medien. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
  19. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Duran Duran – Notorious". Hung Medien. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
  20. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Duran Duran – Notorious". Hung Medien. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
  21. ^ "Official Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
  22. ^ "Duran Duran Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
  23. ^ "European Charts of the Year 1987" (PDF). Music & Media. Vol. 4 no. 51/52. 26 December 1987. p. 35. OCLC 29800226. Retrieved 2 August 2018 – via American Radio History.
  24. ^ "Canadian album certifications – Duran Duran – Notorious". Music Canada. 16 February 1987. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
  25. ^ Salaverrie, Fernando (September 2005). Sólo éxitos: año a año, 1959–2002 (PDF) (in Spanish) (1st ed.). Madrid: Fundación Autor/SGAE. p. 921. ISBN 84-8048-639-2. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
  26. ^ "British album certifications – Duran Duran – Notorious". British Phonographic Industry. 12 December 1986. Retrieved 2 August 2018. Select albums in the Format field. Select Gold in the Certification field. Type Notorious in the "Search BPI Awards" field and then press Enter.
  27. ^ "American album certifications – Duran Duran – Notorious". Recording Industry Association of America. 20 January 1987. Retrieved 2 August 2018. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH. 

External links[edit]