Duran Duran premiered the video for its cover of David Bowie’s “Five Years” this morning on the band’s YouTube channel. The song was released Jan. 8, on what would have been the iconic artist’s 74th birthday.
The band members were shot individually for the VR-heavy video, with vocalist Simon Le Bon, keyboardist Nick Rhodes and drummer Roger Taylor in London. Bassist John Taylor was joined by Bowie’s longtime pianist, Mike Garson, in Los Angeles. The colorful and futuristic-looking performance clip, while a far cry from the game-changing exotic location videos of the one-time kings of MTV, is an apt approach for these COVID times.
Ahead of the video’s premiere, Rhodes took over Duran Duran’s Instagram Live for a 20-minute Q&A session. He began by speaking of the band’s individual personal connections with Bowie’s music from childhood onwards. He also spoke of various Bowie songs Duran Duran have covered over the years, and how “Five Years” was suggested to them by Garson, and that it felt like it had particular significance on the fifth anniversary of Bowie’s passing.
He went on to describe the making of the video under the guidance of director, documentarian and frequent collaborator, Gavin Elder. He also spoke of the involvement of visual artist and green screen expert Teek Mach and her VR effects in post pulled off the group and their backup vocalists and string section seeming like they are in the same space.
Rhodes followed with somewhat of a Q&A of the IG Live participants, who were not so much asking questions as throwing out comments. Immediately following, Taylor hosted a live Q&A on Duran Duran’s YouTube channel, leading into the premiere of the video.
The group is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year and recently launched shows on both Pandora (“Duran 40”) and SiriusXM (“WHOOSH!”), as reported by Variety earlier this week.
Watch the visual below: