(High Rise) Duran Duran have revealed the official music video for their latest track and album namesake Danse Macabre. With creative director Linc Gasking at the helm, this stunning new clip showcases cutting-edge, AI-driven techniques, some of which were only launched as recently as last weekend. The culmination is a 3D animated masterpiece that, in previous times, would have demanded an entire team, over a year and a substantial budget to produce.
Speaking about the video, keyboardist Nick Rhodes reveals, "I like the idea that if you can imagine something you can make it come to life, well at least in animated form... With the Danse Macabre video we did exactly that. We began by deciding who would be on the ultimate Halloween party guest list, then a selection of witches, mythical beasts, vampires and demons were rapidly developed, using the latest AI animation techniques. I was truly astonished when I first started to see the results. It was something that would have previously taken a team months in an animation studio, but it was all happening almost instantly in front of our eyes.
Over a period of a few days we created a whole new universe populated with beautifully strange inhabitants to celebrate the release of Danse Macabre, with a gothic dream."
The video's creative director, Linc Gasking adds, "We are at the beginning of a new medium of storytelling, with a camera directly into the imagination."
The band recently announced their highly anticipated 16th studio album: Danse Macabre. The record is due just in time for Halloween on October 27, on Tape Modern via BMG.
Catalyzed by one special live performance that Duran Duran filmed in Las Vegas on October 31st of last year, Danse Macabre is the soundtrack to their ultimate Halloween party. Across 13 tracks the band unearth bright melodies from the darkness, threading together new songs, themed covers, and newly reimagined versions of their own 'spooky' classics.
Title track 'Danse Macabre' is the first of three brand new songs from this full-length. Anxious percussion sets the tempo against a distorted, growling synthesizer as Simon Le Bon's swaggering verses give way to a handclap-laden and hypnotic hook. Teaming with producer Mr Hudson, channeling the chemistry they unlocked together on the Paper Gods album, the song also features former band-mate Warren Cuccurullo on guitar in his first collaboration with the band since 2001.
Speaking about Danse Macabre, Nick Rhodes said: "The song 'Danse Macabre' celebrates the joy and madness of Halloween. It is the title track of our forthcoming album, which gathers together an unusual mix of cover versions, reworked Duran Duran songs and several new compositions. The idea was born out of a show we played in Las Vegas on October 31st, 2022. We had decided to seize the moment to create a unique, special event...the temptation of using glorious gothic visuals set to a dark soundtrack of horror and humor was simply irresistible.
That evening inspired us to explore further and to make an album, using Halloween as the key theme. The record metamorphosed through a pure, organic process, and not only was it made faster than anything since our debut album, it has also resulted in something none of us could have ever predicted. Emotion, mood, style and attitude have always been at the heart of Duran Duran's DNA, we search for light in the darkness and darkness in the light, and I feel we have somehow managed to capture the essence of all of that in this project."
Simon Le Bon elaborates: "It's about a crazy Halloween party. It's supposed to be fun!"
John Taylor said: "After all these years, Danse Macabre offers an interesting insight into the personality of the band. The music packs a real punch."
Roger Taylor adds: "I hope you take a journey with us through the darker side of our inspirations into where we're at in 2023. Maybe, you'll leave with a deeper understanding of how Duran Duran got to this moment in time."
Fans can also look forward to Duran Duran's Halloween covers of Billie Eilish's 'Bury A Friend', Talking Heads' 'Psycho Killer' (feat. Victoria De Angelis of Måneskin), The Rolling Stones' 'Paint It Black', the Rick James-inspired 'Super Lonely Freak', Siouxsie and the Banshees' 'Spellbound', Cerrone's 'Supernature' and The Specials' 'Ghost Town'.
As well as Warren Cuccurullo, the album includes more special collaborations with former Duran Duran band member Andy Taylor, producer, guitarist and composer Nile Rodgers, Victoria De Angelis of Måneskin, and producers Josh Blair and Mr Hudson.