Posted on 8/28/12
Guest Blogger Tina Williams once again lent her concert review writing skills to Concert Blast to provide us with a review of Duran Duran‘s Hard Rock Live show in Biloxi, MS. This review made us all wished we had attended the concert. Duran Duran has always been an excellent live band with a spectecular light show. Enjoy Tina’s Concert Review!
Written by Tina Williams
Wow! This band can still really rock out! The energy at The Hard Rock in Biloxi, Mississippi is always running high and the crowd can get quite rowdy, but they have some of the best concerts at this location. August 18, 2012 was no exception when Duran Duran performed. As I was standing there waiting for the band to take stage, I was amazed at how many hard-core fans were there to support the band. Several of the people around me told me that they had already been to several Duran Duran shows this year. Due to the energy of the fans and the fact that the show was sold out, I knew it was going to be a wild ride.
Eventually the show started with an old black and white film. I was somewhat confused by this film which lasted about 5 to 8 minutes and featured a water fountain, a shadowed woman dressed in a Victorian style ball gown, and had classical music playing in the background. Maybe it was me, but I found no relation whatsoever between this film and Duran Duran. As this short film played, the crowd kept getting more and more rowdy with the anticipation that the band would walk out at any moment.
Finally, the film ended, the place went black, and then we heard the eerie keyboard chiming in from the extremely talented and unique Nick Rhodes. The next thing I knew they started playing “Before The Rain.” The crowd hung on every word. I have always been a fan, but I was surprised by how many people knew all of their songs, including some of their “not so popular” songs, in which they sang word for word. The band appeared in very cool and sheik clothing, just what you would expect from Duran Duran, and women of all ages went wild.
The next thing I knew, they transferred straight into a killer guitar lick being played by London guitarist Dom Brown. Dom has helped the band with recording and touring since Andy Taylor left in 2006. This lick led us into the song “Planet Earth.” People started singing “Bop bop bop, bop bop bop bop bop!” The crowd loved singing it and it was quite catchy and fun. The screaming never stopped…surprisingly, neither did the singing.
They just kept going strong moving straight into the crazy James Bond theme song “A View To A Kill” with attacking keyboards and synthesizer sound effects from Nick Rhodes. This song sounded exuberating live and was perfect to get the crowd worked up. Simon Le Bon said “Hello Biloxi, Mississippi! Rowdy bunch aren’t you? We’re just a bunch of English Folks.” He then said, “This next song we wrote about our relationship with you guys. Some of you have been with us for 30 years or so because… all you need is this moment right now!” This led into their song “All You Need Is Now.” Everybody joined in singing with the band on this one. I love the haunting sound of the synthesizer in this song.
When the music stopped, Simon addressed the crowd and said, “Can anyone sing out there?” Then he said, “Hey Megadeth, can you sing?” He walked down into the crowd and whispered into a teenage boy’s ear, who was wearing a Megadeth t-shirt. He put the microphone to the boys mouth and the boy nervously started singing “Nah nah nah, nah nah nah,” and the rest of us all joined in singing “nah nah nah, nah nah nah” along with Nick on the keyboards. Simon started off with one of my all-time favorite Duran Duran songs…“The Reflex”… flex flex flex flex! Everybody was dancing and singing word for word. They sounded better than their albums live. Simon danced around while John Taylor and Dom Brown kept coming together with their instruments and Roger chilled in the back playing his heart out on drums. Nick stayed busy the whole time going back and forth on keyboards.
I was so surprised at how the women both the younger and the older crowd still fawned over this band. Women in their twenties were yelling “I love you!” Just as the women were getting really crazy they started the sexy bass line to their next song “Come Undone.” As if that wasn’t bad enough, they had to keep the sex appeal going with an even sexier bass line belonging to their next song, which is one of my favorites, “Union Of The Snake.” Simon sang “Come Undone” so beautifully and with the edition of “Union Of The Snake” I thought a woman would either charge the stage or pass out in the audience.
Then it came time for the men as the big screens popped up with the top supermodels Naomi Campbell, Helena Christensen, Cindy Crawford, and Eva Herzigova. In the video, the models are playing as if they are the members of Duran Duran for the song “Girl Panic!” They all still look beautiful and everyone was intrigued while watching the screens. Afterwards they made a sweet and somber transition into the song “Save A Prayer.”
The next thing I knew Simon yelled “It’s good to be” and the whole band yelled, “FUNKY! “ Then everyone started singing in unison “No, No, Notorious!” The band sounded so good singing and harmonizing on “Notorious” together. When the whole crowd sings in tune with the band, it becomes a rare and beautiful moment in music. Then it really got funky when they started jamming out with the bass and guitar sounds of the Grand Master Flash cover “White Lines.” This one was a great surprise and very different for Duran Duran.
Simon then came out and said that this country, meaning America, has come very far here recently and it is always good when people can be free to be whoever they want to be. He said, “This song goes out to those countries who are less fortunate, Here is, “Ordinary World.” Flashes of all of the different countries flags appeared on the screens behind them, which was a beautiful sight in lights.
The drums started booming, the cool keyboards came in, and immediately we knew it was “Hungry Like The Wolf.” I have to admit, I went a little nuts with everyone else on this one. I was quite surprised that this was not the encore performance, but I didn’t care as long as I heard it and neither did anyone else at that point. Just at the time that you think a concert is dying down, they play one of their biggest hits to get you right back up. Without pause, they started the song, “(Reach Up For The) Sunrise.”
Simon decided to walk right in front of me and throw his tambourine way up into the air, to the point that we thought it would hit the ceiling, but instead of that happening, he threw his hand out to catch it and slammed his finger into the microphone stand, and then shook his hand in pain while the tambourine hit the floor. You could tell he was embarrassed when he bent down to pick it up, but he smiled and kept going because the show must go on and about that time the music had already started for “Wild Boys.” They threw in a twist when they surprised the audience by intertwining the song “Relax” by Frankie Goes to Hollywood in with “Wild Boys”. They actually meshed well together and the crowd loved it. All of a sudden at the end of the song Simon Le Bon began doing the “Mick Jagger rooster strut” as he moved back and forth across the stage bringing roars of laughter amongst the entire crowd.
Simon did a quick introduction of the band, Dom Brown, John Taylor, Roger Taylor, and Nick Rhodes. Afterwards, the whole band yelled at the same time, “Keyboards Nick Rhodes” for a 2nd time. Simon said, “That is a private joke. “ I wish they had let us in on the joke. However, it did make us laugh. The night ended with a bang when they started playing “Rio.”
Afterwards, the entire band came up to the front of the stage, including Nick and Roger. They waived, Nick took our photos, John shook some hands, and everyone had a great time. You definitely get your money’s worth with a Duran Duran concert. They played 16 songs when many people at this venue are done playing by the 12th song or sooner. The show was energy packed, the music was perfection, and the vocals sounded phenomenal live. If you ever get the chance to see them, I would definitely recommend it!
Written by Tina Williams.
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