Wednesday, September 16, 2015

"Rio" by Duran Duran

Song#:  1403
Date:  04/02/1983
Debut:  58
Peak:  14
Weeks:  13
Genre:  New Wave, Synthpop

Pop Bits:  The band's first US chart single, "Hungry Like the Wolf," was just peaking at #3 when this song debuted. Bolstered by another memorable video, the single took off and came close to reaching the Top 10. It was also a hit at Mainstream Rock where the song made it to #5. By this time in the UK and other parts of the world, Duran Duran had already moved on from the "Rio" album. Three singles from the album had already hit the Top 10 in the UK ("Hungry" #5, "Save a Prayrer" #2, and "Rio" #9). The US was playing catch-up. Initially, "Rio" flopped in the US the same way that "Hungry" did on first release. But after the remixed "Hungry" hit, "Rio" would then follow suit. In order to keep up with the rest of the world and the band's growing popularity, there was no time for other singles from the album to be released in the US. However, in a couple of years "Save a Prayer" would see a belated US release and the single would hit #16.

ReduxReview:  Of course I loved "Hungry Like the Wolf," but when this song first came out I liked it even more. The synth arpeggios were so cool and I loved the chorus. But over time this one has faded a bit whereas "Hungry" has kept its 80s glow. I still really like this song but I'm not so enamored with it as I was back in the day.

ReduxRating:  8/10

Trivia:  Although the song lyrics make it sound as if Rio was an actual girl, it is actually a metaphor for the US. The band was striving to be popular in the States and the lyrics were meant to express that desire. The final line of the song pretty much sums it up with "hear them shout across the land, from the mountains in the north down to the Rio Grande."


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