Music Review: Duran Duran: Danse Macabre

It’s been a while since I did a music review. I don’t think I even did one for Duran’s last album, Future Past, which was released two years ago. But the excitement was high for the new Hallowe’en-themed album, so it’s time to get back into the habit! Thoughts listed track by track…


This re-recording sounds even eerier than the original, and sort of more epic. Like a film soundtrack. It does lose some of the punk energy I loved in the 1981 version, though.

Black Moonlight

This is more of a banger every time I hear it. A ‘dancing around the room’ kind of song! Love that funk bassline. I also love that it’s been all over the BBC this Hallowe’en week.

Love Voudou

A funkier and less spiky update of the original ‘Love Voodoo’ from 1993. I think I prefer this version!

Bury A Friend

My favourite Billie Eilish song so I was excited about this one. It did not disappoint. Fully Duranised and nicely rock-infused.


Loses none of the disco feel of the original Cerrone version. Love the backing chorus at the end.

Danse Macabre

Probably the most Hallowe’en-y song on the album. My favourite lyrics (I am a Hallowe’en girl so frankly I was sold from the opening) and it’s another one that’s highly danceable.

Secret Oktober 31st

I always found the original slightly dirge-y (I wrote a piece for Cherry Lipstick to that effect) but this version is a bit better – it has a twinkly lightness about it at the start and then gets a bit filmic by the end. Much more interesting.

Ghost Town

A classic from the Specials back in the day so I wasn’t sure what to expect. They’ve injected it with a lot more fun and it made me smile (and then laugh when it got extra reggae in the middle). A more serious cover would probably have fallen flat but this one struck the right note.

Paint It Black

Another personal favourite from childhood. What I love about the Rolling Stones original is its harsh spikiness and that was lost here. However, it does sound spookier (and the guitars are pleasingly ’80s) so I think it’s a version that will grow on me.

Super Lonely Freak

Duran played this mashup of ‘Super Freak’ and ‘Lonely In Your Nightmare’ when I saw them in Leeds earlier this year. I hadn’t realised it had originated from the Hallowe’en 2022 Vegas gig, but I did enjoy it in concert (even if I was worried for a moment that it had replaced the wonderful ‘Girls On Film’/’Acceptable In The ’80s’ mashup that I love! But they kept that in too so yay). Glad to see it immortalised on record… and the sax section is fantastic.


Being a recovering goth, I am a huge Siouxsie and the Banshees fan. The original has been played at every goth club night since 1981 and so I know it intimately. This version lacks a little of the punk energy, but it would fit in very nicely with later goth rock from the second half of the ’80s.

Psycho Killer

A smoother and more epic version of the Talking Heads original. Gorgeous double bassline (the second provided by Victoria De Angelis of Måneskin, complementing John Taylor) and lovely instrumental work all round.

Confession In The Afterlife

A slow and serious ending to what has otherwise been a fun and danceable album. Pretty tune and a nice guitar solo but it feels like a bit of an odd duck on this record.

Gig Review: Duran Duran at O2 Academy Birmingham, 14th September 2021

It’s been two and a half years since I last did a gig review on here! I’m a bit out of the habit…

Like many other things in my life post-pandemic, going to gigs is not as frequent an occurrence as it used to be. I like my evenings at home on my sofa and it has to be something special for me to buy tickets these days. However, I have been to a few since the world started returning to normal (nine, by my calculations) and have one or two lined up for the future. It’s probably time I start catching up with some reviews again.

It was, of course, highly appropriate that my first post-pandemic gig back was my first time getting to see Duran Duran. They’ve been my favourite band for years now but for various reasons I just hadn’t had the chance to see them. When a couple of surprise dates were announced in September 2021, I grabbed the opportunity with both hands.

I reviewed this gig for both Daily Duranie and Cherry Lipstick at the time, so my much fresher thoughts are out there already and I won’t repeat those. Really it’s just nice to look back, in hindsight, at a really special experience – the suddenness of the announcement, heading down to Birmingham for the evening, the incredible atmosphere at the O2 Academy (a much smaller venue than the arenas Duran usually play) and the overwhelming feeling of experiencing something for which I’d waited a long time. Not to mention excitedly livetweeting the gig (see here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here) 😀

Duran Duran

Now, for the first time in nearly four years, I shall update my Band Aid baby bucket list:

Updated Band Aid baby bucket list progress: song artists 11/37 (29.7%); message artists 2/7 (28.6%); total artists 13/44 (29.5%).

parkrundays: Pendle #416 and Town Moor #596

Catching up with the last couple of weeks.

On the 30th of September, Geth and I headed to Pendle as we were visiting my in-laws. I’d already taken about two and a half minutes off my Pendle PB this year when we last visited in July, so I wasn’t sure how much more I could improve – but I ended up taking another three-ish minutes off! 29:36 – and a few months ago I wasn’t even sure if I’d manage sub-30 anywhere this year, let alone on the toughest parkrun course I know.

parkrun finish token
Low 30s at a smallish parkrun for the second week in a row! Can’t complain about that.

This last Saturday, I did my second pacer stint at Town Moor, pacing 34 minutes again. I still haven’t quite got the hang of judging the finish straight exactly and came in at 34:08 by my watch (34:18 in results). I’ll give it another go in a couple of months!

A different event and a different volunteer role next week.

Phone Box Thursday: A816, Arduaine

Here’s another from Mum and Dad’s trip to western Scotland.

Red phone box
Red phone box, A816, Arduaine, 25th August 2023.

(Coordinates 56°23’09.6″N, 5°54’77.8″W.)

I was confused when searching on Street View at first as there’s another red phone box just up the road – it’s a bit more tucked away so Mum and Dad must have missed it! The other one is being used as an ‘eggbox’ but this one featured today has a real phone in it. It also has a nice white frosted effect on the pane surrounds, though I don’t think that’s deliberate.