Duran Duran is the focus of an essential new concert film available on DVD while Firefall and The Foreign Films are back with essential new albums.
Artist: Duran Duran
Title: A Hollywood High (Cherry Red Records)
You might like if you enjoy: Duran Duran, Roxy Music, Arcadia
Tell me more: A Hollywood High is a true celebration of modern British rock group Duran Duran's special relationship with Los Angeles. In addition to interviews with singer Simon Le Bon, keyboardist Nick Rhodes, bassist John Taylor, drummer Roger Taylor as well as unseen archival footage dating back to the early 1980s, the docu-concert film features a 12-song show filmed at The Aster in Los Angeles on March 17, 2022. Visually stunning (the location features the iconic Capitol Records Tower as a backdrop), the high-rise rooftop performance features 4K video and is enhanced by 5.1 and Dolby Atoms surround sound that fully capture the band at the height of their powers. The setlist includes a mix of Duran Duran's hits and shining new material. Among the many outstanding songs performed are the powerful opener "A View To A Kill," lovely "Come Undone," explosive "Pressure Off," a crowd pleasing cover of "White Lines," moving "Ordinary World" (the latter dedicated to the people of Ukraine) and festive closer "Hungry Like The Wolf." A Hollywood High is available on both Blu-ray and DVD. Information: duranduran.com.
Title: Friends & Family (Sunset Blvd Records)
You might like if you enjoy: The Doobie Brothers, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Firefall, Loggins & Messina, Poco
Tell me more: Because many of 1970s hitmaker Firefall's band members have also played with some of the most beloved artists of the 70s' and '80s — including The Byrds, Flying Burrito Brothers, Spirit, Heart, Dan Fogelberg and Gram Parsons — it's not surprising that the quintet's latest album Friends & Family is such a resounding success. The disc (due Sept. 22 via Sunset Blvd Records) showcases Firefall's solid ability to recapture the spirit and sound of the classic rock era that gave rise to their outfit and so many of their beloved contemporaries; Firefall offers up their own versions of 13 classic tracks originally recorded by others artists between the late 1960s and early '80s. Highlights include the mostly-faithful performance of the Doobie Brothers' "Long Train Running," harmonies-adorned take on Fogelberg's "Part of the Plan," inspired folk rock reading of the Marshall Tucker Band's "Can't You See," poignant version of Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Simple Man" (the latter bolstered by John Magnie's sublime accordion work) and delightfully driving version of Spirit's rocker "I Got a Line On You." They also rework Heart's 1985 rocker "What About Love" into a winning countrified version, while bringing a magic to versions of the Flying Burrito Brothers' soaring "Colorado" and Parson's rowdy country rocker "Ooh Las Vegas." Information: firefallofficial.com.
Title: Magic Shadows (Kool Kat Musik)
You might like if you enjoy: The Three O'Clock, XTC, Jellyfish
Tell me more: In the official press notes for The Foreign Films' album Magic Shadows, band leader Bill Majoros notes "I love the idea of taking the listener on a musical adventure, creating a sonic and emotional experience...I think of music as a time machine — visiting the past, present and future." Indeed, Magic Shadows does transport the listener on a wide-ranging sonic journey. The songs here recall the past while also celebrating the here and now. The luxurious "Cinema Girl" draws favorable comparisons with top-flight Jellyfish while the propulsive "Perfect Future" exudes an urgency in tune with our troubled times. Other memorable tracks include the Baroque pop nugget "Sparks In The Dark (Merry-Go-Round)," dreamy "Midnight Movies" and "Lost In Time," and Beach Boys-minded "Daydream In The Sun." My favorite track is the shimmering "Rain Clouds," a swirling cut that blends '60s' psychedelic stylings with the sound of '80s Paisley Underground heroes The Three O'Clock in glorious fashion. Information: koolkatmusik.com.