Duran Duran @ Borgata Hotel

Duran Duran (Nadine Joy)Duran Duran was a wildly popular British band of the ’80s that made danceable rock tunes that were very memorable. In the MTV era their videos were always on the cutting edge and the band was always interested in their image while maintaining substance.

Duran Duran bashers will say that this band is fem and their music isn’t compelling. Since I never had witnessed a live Duran Duran performance I was eagerly anticipating their appearance at the Borgata Hotel in Atlantic City, NJ.

The concert opened up with “Sunrise” a single from their latest album entitled Astronaut. This is the first time the original line-up has put out an album since 1983 and the song was a hit with the crowd. At least six songs from the new CD were played and they were also well received.

The band then ramped up with “Hungry Like The Wolf” and “Planet Earth.” By the time the fifth song had been played, lead singer Simon Le Bon had taken off his fashionable coat and was ready to start dancing and sweating.

The concert really started to pick up steam when they played “The Reflex.” That was such a great dance hit and even some rhythmically challenged guys were moving around. There was one older guy that was performing a one-armed lumberjack move by swinging his one arm back and forth—that was something to see.

The second half of this show was electric and the last three songs were enough to whip the mostly female crowd into a frenzy. “Wild Boys” was the song that drew the loudest raves and “Girls On Film” and “Rio” followed before the band called it a night after two hours.

The videos in this concert were great and at one time the band had a small Japanese Anime short video that showed the band’s bloody defeat of Godzilla replete with flying saucers! The funniest part was when the band’s label was subliminally mentioned as a message about the endangered music industry that the band was fighting.

In the middle of the show the band had all the fans light up their cell phones instead of lighters. That was a good thing since there were only four that I could count.

When your looks start to fade you have to fall back on your talent and this band can do that. Andy Taylor is a fabulous guitarist and brothers John (bass) and Roger (drums) are also great concert musicians. Nick Rhodes could also play a mean keyboard to help this band maintain its trademark “techno” sound in a live venue. Le Bon’s voice is still solid and this show and new album are both very worthy.