No one had limitless confidence, but the revival of Duran Duran in 1992, with Ordinary World, might have been a one-off were it not for the charismatic Come Undone. Consolidating the group’s grip on the singles charts, the song powered Duran Duran’s self-titled 1993 album (aka “The Wedding Album”) to the band’s strongest sales since the 80s. Here is the story of how Come Undone kept things together for Duran Duran in a new era.
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The backstory: Surviving during challenging times
Like many of the New Romantic bands they’d come up with, Duran Duran had been going through a challenging patch in the early 90s, and there was no guarantee that the tectonic shifts in the music scene, with dance and club culture so dominant, plus Britpop and grunge making increasing inroads, were about to offer any respite. The band, now including guitarist Warren Cuccurullo, were recording new material in Cuccurullo’s London home studio, and while their then record label, EMI, remained supportive, they were also tightly policing Duran Duran’s progress for the first time.
The recording: “Simon very quickly made it his, or himself a part of it”
Coming up with Ordinary World gave everyone confidence to continue, but Come Undone was one of the last tracks recorded for what would become “The Wedding Album”. “It was something that Warren and I started writing alongside some other stuff that we’d been playing around with,” said keyboardist Nick Rhodes, 20 years after the album’s release. “Simon [Le Bon, singer] came in and heard what we were doing. He said, ‘Wow, I love that!’ And so it became a Duran Duran song. [Simon] came up with a really great melody – we already had the ‘Can’t ever keep from falling apart’ section – and he very quickly made it his, or himself part of it.”