So Red the Rose (album degli Arcadia del 1985)

Nel 1985 tre membri dei Duran Duran, formarono un gruppo, gli Arcadia, durato lo spazio di un album: SO RED THE ROSE.

Simon Le bon, Nick Rhodes e Roger Taylor fecero un lavoro attento di qualità e contenuto nell’arco di nove pezzi, non commettendo l’errore di rifare i Duran Duran all’apice del successo in quegli anni. Il disco si apre con delle voci gracchianti che alludono al titolo del brano apripista Election day, che monta con la sua energia esaltandone il ritornello con in evidenza il controcanto di Grace Jones. Poi è la volta di Keep me in the dark, che già dal titolo intona un racconto oscuro e onirico. Goodbye is forever è una canzone adatta ai circuiti radiofonici grazie al suo motivo di impatto immediato ideale da cantare quotidianamente. Ottima la prestazione vocale di Le Bon.

Segue The flame e anche qui la Jones sfodera il suo canto elegante quasi sotterraneo all’inizio del brano, magniloquente e diretto. La staffetta è presa poi dalla dolce e rilassante Missing, un passaggio ideale dopo tanta adrenalina: in evidenza la maestosa atmosfera creata da questo brano. Segue un intro al pezzo successivo ma, nonostante la breve durata 51″, merita un elogio perché, oltre a mantenere uno stato di piacevole rilassatezza, mette anche ansia all’ascoltatore per quella sua aria inquietante ispirata da un arrangiamento macabro. Così si arriva alla volata finale, con la travolgente The promise, che impenna nuovamente il ritmo impreziosito da un grande Sting al controcanto, El diablo si colloca tra il ritmo e una struggente melodia un momento credo tra i più belli dell’album e infine si chiude con la maestosa Lady ice che ha in comune con i 51 secondi di Rose Arcana l’atmosfera da brivido ma, disponendo di un notevole minutaggio, si espande sfoderando un ottimo contrasto sonoro che ricorda qualche illustre precedente degli anni settanta.

Un disco a parer mio molto bello, probabilmente frutto di una pausa necessaria dai trionfi ma anche dalla spossatezza duraniana e dalla voglia di sperimentare sonorità diverse, col contributo di grandi artisti quali David Gilmour, Sting, Grace Jones e Harbie Hancock.

Per la cronaca, pur figurando in tre, gli Arcadia non ebbero un supporto considerevole dal batterista Roger Taylor, che in quel periodo versava in condizioni psicofisiche precarie.

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