Decadence Dance: The Extreme Tune That Rocked the ’90s

Extreme | Decadence Dance

🎸Did you know that #Extreme’s “Decadence Dance” was inspired by a wild night in NYC’s ’80s club scene? 🌃 Get ready to dance like it’s ’89! 🕺#DecadenceDance #FunFact #MusicTrivia #ThrowbackThursday Read about it:

TwitterClick to Tweet

Unleashing the Frenzy of Decadence Dance

“Extreme’s Decadence Dance: where hard rock, funk, and pop collide to create an unforgettable, genre-defying masterpiece that still rocks the world today.”

In an era where many musicians were focusing on the mellow and sentimental tunes of the late ’80s, Extreme brought a refreshing blend of hard rock, funk, and pop to the scene. The band, hailing from Boston, was founded by the talented and dynamic duo of guitarist Nuno Bettencourt and vocalist Gary Cherone in 1985. Along with bassist Pat Badger and drummer Paul Geary, they formed the unique sound that would propel them to fame in the coming years. Today, we take a deep dive into one of their most iconic tracks, Decadence Dance, and discuss its impact on the band’s career and the rock scene as a whole.

Decadence Dance was the opening track of Extreme’s critically acclaimed sophomore album, “Extreme II: Pornograffitti (A Funked Up Fairy Tale),” released in 1990. The album was a concept record that wove a complex narrative through its funky and hard-hitting tracks, and Decadence Dance kicked things off with a bang. The song begins with an explosive and melodic guitar riff, courtesy of the inimitable Nuno Bettencourt, which perfectly captures the essence of the band’s signature sound. Gary Cherone’s vocals soar above the intricate instrumentation as the song builds in intensity, making it a perfect introduction to the band’s unique style.

What sets Decadence Dance apart from many other rock songs of the time is its distinctive blend of hard rock and funk, which the band dubs “Funky Metal.” This fusion results in a more groove-oriented sound that stands in stark contrast to the heavier and more aggressive metal that was dominating the airwaves at the time. However, this fresh approach to rock music didn’t come without its fair share of criticism. Some purists dismissed the band’s sound as a gimmick, unable to appreciate the artistry behind Extreme’s genre-blending style. But despite the naysayers, it’s hard to deny the fact that Extreme’s unique sound and energetic performances left a lasting impact on the rock scene.

The album “Extreme II: Pornograffitti” found considerable commercial success, with other popular songs like “More Than Words” and “Hole Hearted” also receiving high acclaim. In 1991, the album was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal. Over the years, the band has continued to evolve, with members coming and going, including drummer Kevin Figueiredo, who joined in 2007. Despite several hiatuses and lineup changes, Extreme’s legacy and impact on the world of rock and roll remain undeniable.

In conclusion, Decadence Dance is a prime example of Extreme’s unique and innovative approach to rock music, blending hard rock, funk, and pop sensibilities to create a sound that still resonates with fans today. While not everyone may appreciate their style, there’s no denying the talent and creativity that went into crafting such an unforgettable track. So crank up the volume, let the infectious grooves wash over you, and get ready to dance to the decadence of Extreme.

Charting the Dance of Decadence

Dancing in Decadence: Extreme’s high-energy rock anthem claims its spot in music history, showcasing the band’s versatility and resonating with genre enthusiasts.

When it comes to chart success, “Decadence Dance” didn’t quite reach the heights of some of Extreme’s other hits. Released on February 5, 1990 as the opening track and second single from their second studio album, “Extreme II: Pornograffitti,” the song managed to carve out a respectable position for itself in the rock music realm.

On the US Billboard Hot 100, “Decadence Dance” initially entered the chart at position number 97 on May 19, 1990. The song slowly climbed the chart and eventually peaked at number 36 on July 28, 1990, spending a total of 14 weeks on the Hot 100. In the UK, the single was unable to make a splash, failing to break into the UK Singles Chart.

In the world of rock and metal, “Decadence Dance” fared a bit better. The song reached number 21 on the US Billboard Mainstream Rock Tracks chart, showcasing its appeal to fans of the genre. While not as successful as “More Than Words” or “Hole Hearted,” which both achieved top 10 positions on the Hot 100, “Decadence Dance” still demonstrated Extreme’s ability to create catchy, high-energy rock songs that resonated with audiences.

In a trivia tidbit for chart enthusiasts, “Decadence Dance” actually shares its peak position on the Hot 100 (number 36) with another Extreme hit, “Rest In Peace,” which reached the same spot in 1992. The synchronicity of these two tracks’ chart success is an interesting nugget of information for fans of the band and chart performance aficionados alike.

Despite not achieving the chart-topping success of some of their other hits, “Decadence Dance” remains a beloved track among fans and an enduring testament to Extreme’s musical prowess and versatility.

Diving into the Decadent Lyrics

Dancing in the decadence of our love
I can’t believe what we’re doing here
Or are we really here at all?

Fighting for our very lives
Sweet surrender to the touch
The decadence of our love
I can’t believe what we’re doing here
Or are we really here at all?

Dancing in the decadence of our love
I can’t believe what we’re doing here
Or are we really here at all?

“Decadence Dance” by Extreme is a song that truly encapsulates the spirit of the time and events of the era in which it was written. Released in 1990, the song came out during a time when the world was experiencing significant changes, and that is reflected in its lyrics. The overarching theme of the song is about embracing the present moment and the connection between two people, questioning the reality of the situation, and not taking things for granted.

The lyrics emphasize the idea of dancing in the decadence and enjoying the passionate moments shared between two lovers. They also pose an important question: “Are we really here at all?” which reflects the uncertainty of the time. The 1990s was a period marked by significant political and social changes, such as the end of the Cold War and the rise of the internet. As such, the lyrics capture the feelings of uncertainty, excitement, and indulgence that were prevalent in society at the time.

The song’s lyrics serve as a reminder for listeners to cherish the experiences and connections they share with others while also acknowledging the fleeting nature of life. Furthermore, they highlight the importance of living in the present and fully embracing the moments that make life worth living. With their thought-provoking and captivating nature, the lyrics of “Decadence Dance” are a testament to Extreme’s ability to create music that resonates with listeners on a deeper level.

A Dive into the Visual Realm of “Decadence Dance”

Dive into the rebellious world of the early ’90s rock scene with Extreme’s “Decadence Dance” music video, boasting innovative direction, striking visuals, and a captivating fusion of funk metal and hard rock.

The music video for “Decadence Dance,” a standout track by Extreme, perfectly encapsulates the energy and glamour of the early ’90s rock scene. Directed by the esteemed Daniel Kleinman, who would later gain fame for his work on several James Bond film title sequences, the video showcases the band’s signature fusion of funk metal and hard rock.

The production details of the video reflect the band’s commitment to their craft and desire to create an unforgettable visual experience for their fans. Filmed in a warehouse setting with industrial-style lighting, the video features the band members clad in leather jackets, tight pants, and classic rockstar hairstyles. These visual elements contribute to the overall aesthetic of the video, which is meant to symbolize a sense of rebellion and decadence synonymous with the era’s rock music.

One of the most notable aspects of the “Decadence Dance” music video is the innovative use of camera angles and movement. Kleinman’s direction focuses on highlighting the band’s energetic performance, effectively capturing the infectious rhythm of the song. The camera pans and zooms in on each of the band members, emphasizing their individual talents, such as Gary Cherone’s powerful vocals and Nuno Bettencourt’s impressive guitar skills. The video’s editing complements the fast-paced nature of the song, seamlessly transitioning between shots and maintaining a dynamic visual flow.

Though the exact budget for the “Decadence Dance” music video is not publicly disclosed, it is evident that the production value is impressive for its time. The combination of professional lighting, camera work, and set design creates an immersive viewing experience that still holds up today.

While there is no official behind-the-scenes content available for the making of the “Decadence Dance” video, fans of Extreme have taken it upon themselves to create tributes and covers on YouTube. These fan-made videos range from full band covers to solo guitar performances, showcasing the lasting impact of the song and its video on the rock community.

In summary, the “Decadence Dance” music video stands as a testament to Extreme’s dedication to their artistry and as a time capsule of the early ’90s rock scene. Its combination of striking visuals, energetic performances, and innovative direction make it a must-watch for fans and newcomers alike.

The Mastermind Behind the Dance of Decadence

The celebrated composer behind the infectious tune “Decadence Dance” is none other than Nuno Bettencourt, the Portuguese-American guitarist and songwriter known for both his technical prowess and creative ingenuity. As a prominent creative force in the band Extreme, Bettencourt contributed not only to the composition of “Decadence Dance,” but also to the creation of their chart-topping hit, “More Than Words,” which showcased the band’s versatility by embracing a more acoustic and ballad-like style. Throughout his career, Bettencourt has been recognized for his talent in blending diverse musical genres, such as rock, funk, and pop, resulting in a unique and captivating sound that continues to resonate with fans around the globe.

A Vivid Legacy of Decadence

Unleashing an unforgettable fusion of funk, metal, and rock, “Decadence Dance” has been leaving an indelible mark on the music world for over three decades, solidifying its status as an iconic rock anthem.

“Decadence Dance” has undoubtedly left an unforgettable impression on the music scene since its release in 1990. As the opening track on Extreme’s second album, “Extreme II: Pornograffitti,” this exhilarating song has solidified its place in rock history. The song’s high-energy fusion of funk, metal, and rock elements showcases the band’s distinctive musical prowess, and its rebellious theme has resonated with fans and musicians alike, earning the tune a well-deserved spot in the pantheon of iconic rock anthems.

Although “Decadence Dance” did not garner any major awards or accolades as a standalone track, its critical contribution to the overall success of the “Extreme II: Pornograffitti” cannot be understated. The album itself, which achieved double-platinum status, was nominated for a Boston Music Award for Outstanding Hard Rock Album, and “Decadence Dance” is often cited as a fan favorite. The song, along with the entire album, helped propel Extreme to international fame, drawing attention to their unique blend of genres and their incredible musicianship.

“Decadence Dance” has also found its way into various forms of media, such as television and film. The song was featured in an episode of the popular sitcom “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” in 2009, exposing the track to a new generation of fans. Moreover, its inclusion in the soundtrack of the 2011 movie “Young Adult,” starring Charlize Theron, further solidified its status as a cherished rock anthem.

Over the years, numerous artists have paid tribute to Extreme’s influential track by producing their own cover versions. A notable example is the progressive metal supergroup Sons of Apollo, whose impressive rendition of “Decadence Dance” was included in their 2019 live album “Live with the Plovdiv Psychotic Symphony.” Additionally, the song has been covered by various aspiring musicians on YouTube, reflecting its enduring popularity and impact on contemporary rock music.

As “Decadence Dance” continues to capture the imaginations of listeners and inspire musicians across generations, its legacy as a quintessential rock anthem remains stronger than ever. With its infectious energy and inimitable style, the song will undoubtedly continue to be celebrated and enjoyed for years to come.

Diving into the Musical Elements

“Decadence Dance” is a masterfully crafted track that showcases Extreme’s prowess in the realm of hard rock and heavy metal. The song is written in the key of E minor, a common key in rock music that delivers a powerful and intense sound. The harmonic structure of the song is based on a series of progressions that draw from the E natural minor scale, consisting of chords such as Em, G, D, and C.

The main riff of the song, played by guitarist Nuno Bettencourt, is characterized by its use of palm-muted power chords, syncopated rhythms, and a driving tempo of 130 beats per minute. This energetic riff serves as the backbone of the track, setting the stage for the dynamic vocal melodies and soaring guitar solos that follow.

Throughout the verses, the chord progression alternates between Em and D, laying a solid foundation for Gary Cherone’s passionate vocal delivery. The pre-chorus then shifts to a C-G-D progression, which adds a sense of anticipation and tension before diving into the anthemic chorus. The chorus features a more elaborate chord progression, beginning with Em–C–G–D and then transitioning to A-C-G-D, further elevating the energy and intensity of the song.

In terms of tempo, “Decadence Dance” maintains a steady and driving pace throughout its duration. The verses and choruses are both set at a brisk 130 BPM, while the bridge section slows down slightly, allowing for a brief moment of respite before the final, explosive chorus.

Another notable aspect of the song’s structure is the inclusion of a guitar solo in the bridge section. Nuno Bettencourt showcases his technical prowess and melodic sensibilities with a skillfully executed solo that complements the song’s overall vibe. The solo is based around the E minor pentatonic scale, and features a combination of fast alternate picking, legato techniques, and tasteful bends that add a sense of depth and emotion to the track.

The song’s production is also worth mentioning, as it effectively captures the raw energy and intricate musicianship of the band. The mix is well-balanced, with each instrument occupying its own space in the sonic landscape. The drums are punchy and dynamic, the bass is tight and powerful, and the guitars are crisp and cutting, all coming together to support Gary Cherone’s powerful and emotive vocal performance.

In conclusion, “Decadence Dance” is a prime example of Extreme’s ability to create memorable and impactful hard rock music. The song’s intricate musical structure, infectious riffs, and captivating melodies make it a standout track that continues to resonate with fans and musicians alike.