Duran Duran Announce First Album in Six Years, ‘Future Past’
Duran Duran have announced their first studio album in six years, Future Past.
Due Oct. 22, the LP is preceded by a new single, "Invisible," which is out tomorrow (May 19) and has been teased all week on the band's social media. Duran Duran will also be performing the song at the Billboard Music Awards on May 23.
According to the band's official online store, the standard version of the Future Past has 12 tracks and "features special guests Graham Coxon of Blur on guitar, Mike Garson from David Bowie's band on piano, and guest vocals from Lykke Li, with more exciting collaborations to be announced." A deluxe edition of the album contains three bonus tracks, while extras like colored vinyl and band autographed artwork accompany some of the higher-priced bundles. You can pre-order/pre-save Future Past here.
Duran Duran has been working on Future Past for several years now. In July 2019, just before the band played a concert celebrating the 50th anniversary of the first moon landing, keyboardist Nick Rhodes gave NME some insight into how the album was shaping up.
“There’s one song so far that’s a frontrunner to be the first single," Rhodes explained. "It’s just so different from anything I’ve heard from us before, or actually anyone else. There’s a dance element to it. The construction of it, the melodic content, the lyrics, some of the sounds… they’re very different for us.”
In a March 2020 interview with The Times, he described the album as “handmade” and “guitary" and added that the studio where they were working was "filled with analog synthesizers, so it's just joy for me."
As has been previously reported, production on Future Past comes from legendary electronic producer Giorgio Moroder, DJ and remixer Erol Alkan, and Mark Ronson. The latter co-produced Duran Duran's last album, 2015's Paper Gods, as well as 2011's All You Need Is Now. As bassist John Taylor noted, having all of these collaborators proved to be a boon.
“We have to starve ourselves of creativity long enough that when we do show up we have something to say,” he said. “[The studio sessions] are quite exhausting because we have been down this road. We can finish each other’s sentences and I guess, to some extent, we can do that musically as well. We are working with the same cast; it’s like a soap opera. That’s why collaborators become so important as you need to keep the spirit lively.”
Future Past was meant to be out before fall 2021, but the COVID-19 pandemic threw a slight wrench in the group's release plans; among other things, a scheduled Hyde Park 40th anniversary show was bumped from 2020 to 2022. “Before the pandemic struck, there was a new Duran Duran almost finished,” Rhodes told Vogue back in April. “We were gearing up with a lot of shows, like a lot of other artists, and had to put everything on hold.”
Still, as Simon Le Bon told Rolling Stone in early 2021, the wait was worth it. “[The album is] quite naked, raw. The grass is slightly sharp and twinkly rather than smooth. It’s groovy (and) modern and very honest. The lyrics are quite something.”