Duran Duran: How the band made a new music video 'untouched by human hands'

ITV News Arts Editor Nina Nannar speaks to the band about the process of making one very special music video

Duran Duran have often embraced new technology when making their music.

They were one of the first bands to truly capitalise on the new frontier of MTV in the 1980s, producing high-end production videos to their singles which propelled them to global stardom.  

And in 1997, they were the first band to sell their single digitally, releasing 'Electric Barbarella' from Abbey Road Studios using Liquid Audio.

Now, in another technological first, Duran Duran have used Artificial Intelligence to create a music video to accompany their latest single 'INVISIBLE'.

"When we arrived on the scene, the video age was beginning and we grasped it and it was a very big part of what made Duran Duran global at the time," singer Simon Le Bon told ITV News Arts Editor Nina Nannar.

'We're the space race generation'

"I think we've always viewed technology as something that we can use that can really help us. We're not intimidated by it," he added.

Bandmate Nick Rhodes added: "I think it's super exciting technology and we're sort of the space race generation.

"So growing up through that period where a man landed on the moon, anything that was new and technologically advanced was appealing.

"And if you can use it to enhance your toolkit for what you're doing, I think that's fantastic."

Listen to our Arts and Entertainment podcast Unscripted, hosted by Nina Nannar

The band teamed up with a company called Nested Minds.

They're group of individuals who studied under Neuroscientist Karl Friston, who created 'Huxley' - a creative AI that exists in the cloud. 

Providing the lyrics, pictures, music and other information about the band, the video was created entirely by Huxley and was "untouched by human hands".

Powered by technology that is uniquely based on the structures of the brain, modelling human intelligence and emotional engagement, Huxley created the video using random images it 'dreamed' up.

  • Watch Huxley's video for Duran Duran's INVISIBLE. Footage courtesy of Tape Modern/BMG Rights Management (UK) Ltd

"When you look at Huxley, this is the sort of first new generation of this type of intelligence, but that will grow and be useful in many, many other fields," Rhodes said.

He added: "It's incredible new technology because before AI has been more mathematical, this one's actually more arts based.

"It does actually dream and think in different ways."

So how does AI make a music video? The band explain

"So for example, you put the word keyboard in, or some images of a keyboard. It correlates that with zebra," Rhodes said.

"And for some reason it put a fish with a bass guitar.

"So it's quite surreal and abstract in many ways as a lot of great art has been."

'I'm the drummer - I don't know the lyrics!'

Le Bon added: "They like to say it dreamt it, it dreamt the video completely without any other sort of editing or guidance from his handlers."

Drummer Roger Taylor said: "They just took those images of us all singing and put them into the program.

"And it came out with these incredible kind of ghostly images which kind of blew me away."

Duran Duran's single INVISIBLE, released on Wednesday, is the first single from their upcoming album FUTURE PAST due for full release in October.