The Quietus - A new rock music and pop culture website

Baker's Dozen

The Sounds Of Planet Earth: Nick Rhodes Of Duran Duran’s Favourite Albums
John Freeman , April 15th, 2013 08:16

As his long-standing side-project TV Mania finally releases an album, Bored With Prozac And The Internet?, Duran Duran’s Nick Rhodes reveals the 13 albums that changed his perceptions about music

“I was horrified when I saw the email come through asking whether I would choose 13 albums.” Nick Rhodes, keyboard player and one of the original members of Duran Duran, is experiencing the very common reaction to our Baker’s Dozen concept. “It’s impossible – I could choose 13 David Bowie albums,” he says and I, for one, believe him.

We are sitting in a smart South London recording studio and Rhodes is on fine form. Ice has been broken – we’ve already swapped stories about school detentions. I tell Nick that my one-and-only detention throughout my school career was due to Duran Duran. I turned up late to school one morning in 1983 as I’d decided I ‘needed’ to buy their ‘Is There Something I Should Know?’ single as soon as the local record shop opened on the morning of its release. I was grassed up by a classmate who preferred Spandau Ballet and copped a week’s worth of detentions. Nick tells me his only detention was sparked by a geography teacher proclaiming that “the forestry industry was undergoing a period of growth” which left the young Rhodes in a fit of uncontrollable – but punishable - giggles.

As we begin to discuss his 13 favourite albums, Nick is at pains to set the scene. “When it came to it, I tried to find things that I truly believed changed things for me, and for music, by people who thought differently and had the will and the energy to make these records. Musicianship is great and forward-thinking is great but having the attitude to pull things off is half the battle. Every one of the records I’ve chosen has a completely uncompromising attitude about it.”

Rhodes’ list is an expansive mash-up of multiple genres and while Duran Duran may not have quite displayed the level of innovation inherent within his choices, it’s easy to see how a love of glam, punk, disco, funk, art-rock and electronic music forged the early Duran sound.

After discussing nine of the albums, Nick’s publicist disturbs our peace in an attempt to wrap up the interview. Nick tells her that we will be a while and that the next interviewer – a dude from an expensive gentlemen’s magazine - will need to wait. “Maybe ten more minutes?” she says, trying to keep the tight schedule on track. “It’ll be closer to 20,” Rhodes tells me, out of the kindly publicist’s earshot. “We haven’t even got onto David Bowie yet.”

Bored With Prozac And The Internet? by TV Mania is out now; click on Nick's image below to begin scrolling through his choices.