“Secret Oktober”, the flip side of Duran’s “Union of the Snake” is truly a buried gem, a song that would have considerably brightened the overblown and overly bloated “Seven and the Ragged Tiger” (perhaps replacing the unnecessary instrumental “Tiger, Tiger”?). “Secret Oktober”
is basically Simon and Nick, vocals and synths, very much in the vein of “The Chauffer” off “Rio”, a nice melody over a comparatively understated synth riff. It continues to be a big fan favorite to this day – I even saw them do it live in 1994 during the Cucurillo years, so it must be close to the boys. Luckily for Durannies, each and every b-side and remix is available on two different box sets.
The first one (’81-’85) is essential, the second, not so much.
And by request, here’s a pretty rare Kissing the Pink b-side – “Garden Party”
is not the Ricky Nelson hit, but rather an extension of its a-side, “Maybe This Day” (which we've talked about here
). I’d like to think it was meant to describe the party sung about in “Maybe This Day” (over the garden wall she said / let’s go to the party
). Perhaps, or maybe it has nothing to do with it. In any case, it’s an arty, moody little number, worth a couple of listens, but hardly their best.