Duran Duran – Planet Earth
If you ask me to list European popstars of the 80s, I have no doubt about the number one name. Sorry for alltheother amazing singers and groups, but number one goes to Duran Duran. In the United States it’s a tight race wwith Michael Jackson and Madonna, of course.
Duran Duran are the real icon of the 80s. “Wild boys” is the anthem of the 80s, and albums like “Rio” and “Seven and the ragged tiger” really changed the history of pop. No other group unchained mass hysteria and emulation trends among the teenagers in the whole continent, only Spandau Ballet went close to that levels.
Of course Duran Duran’s history had a beginning; their first concert dates back to April 5, 1979; for more than one year they played only in the Birmingham zone, often changing their lineup.
On June 1st, the same year, they played at the Barbarella’s, a famouse concert pub, and I like to think that exactly that night they chose their stage name. As we know, the name comes from a character of the “Barbarella” movie. The President of Earth assigns her mission to Barbarella: “Find Durand Durand!”
On July 16, 1980, thay playwith their classic line up at the Rum Runner in Birmingham. They were at home there, because they used to work also as deejays or staff. They played 8 songs that night, some of them became famous later, but they did not play this song.
We have to wait until February 2, 1981 to see their first single released. Actually their fame raised day by day from that moment on, with following hits and albums, but it’s correct to say that they sarted their incredible journey with the release of “Planet Earth”.
Those were the days of new-romantic, as Simon mentions in the lyrics. And we see new-romantic fashion: Simon’s knickerbockers, Nick’s lace collar. We see how Simon moves and dances, he will soon radically change his style and movements. We see weird hair colors: a brown SImon, an almost red Nick, a platinum blond Andy Taylor.
Yet, here they are. The video is also a masterpiece, if we consider that it was filmed in 1981. Director Russell Mulcahy used several effects which made it unforgettable: the platform where they sing, the icy environment, the electronic data about numbers and characteristics of Planet Earth.
On that day the pop aliens landed. And Planet Earth was ready to dance with them.
Duran Duran on Wikipedia