Duran Duran Live (10/28/07)

Michelle and I went to see Duran Duran perform at The Chevrolet Theatre in Wallingford, CT on October 28th. It was an amazing concert and I'm so glad that I got a chance to see them perform all the songs off their soon-to-be released Red Carpet Massacre CD.

We got stuck in some really unexpected traffic on the Mass Pike, but eventually made it there with time to spare because unannounced to us-there was a mysterious 1 hour delay. Good Doobie that I am, I asked Michelle as we were leaving the car what she was going to do as no cameras were allowed during the performance. Without hesitation and like the seasoned concert goer that she is, up came her Patriots Football sweatshirt and in slid her digital camera between her cleavage. I simply would have never thought of that.

I was very disappointed that I didn't walk away with a t-shirt to commemorate our concert experience, but the red/black baseball shirt with the awesome crest on it was insanely priced at $50. It was a good thing the hand-scrawled sign of "Cash Only" was posted because believe me, I came close to buying it. But considering the price of admission was $55, how could I justify spending nearly the same to buy a t-shirt that I might soon find on EBay?

We killed time by eating Nachos and Super Pretzels and experienced a no-wait line in the Ladies bathroom before the concert. I people watched enjoying the sea of mid-thirties women decked out in bedazzled shirts with designer handbags slung across their shoulders. I purposely ignored the jumbo-tron plasma televisions showing the Red Sox playing in what would be the last game of '07 The World Series.

We had 20th row seats thanks to Michelle's Ticketmaster savyness, but we weren't able to sell our first set of tickets probably because the concert wasn't sold out and the band added a second performance on Monday night. I tried selling them on the Bose bulletin board and she tried both Craigslist and EBay, but sadly no takers.

Just before the concert began, two men seated themselves next to Michelle and I. One of them warned us of their impending heavy beer drinking and advised us not to become annoyed with them. Throughout the concert, their warning resulted in multiple trips to the bathroom and lots of beer refills. As predicted, one of those little buggers got up to take a piss more times than I cared to count and at one point towards the end of the show, I looked over to my right to see one of the men staring at me with bleary eyes as he smiled and shouted, "Are you having a good time?" I don't know if he was hitting on me, but considering he was a man at a Duran Duran concert let's just say I didn't find his interest in my concert enjoyment (no thanks to him!) too flattering.

Duran Duran played all the songs from their new CD and the crowd was on their feet throughout. A girl sitting behind us started loudly complaining that she wanted to hear some classics, but I forgave her bitching when the band played the song 'Box Full o'Honey' and she confusingly asked her boyfriend, "What did they say? Salami?"

Considering this concert was an obvious warm-up, stretch-their-toes performance in preparation for their two-week run on Broadway in New York, they did an admirable job. Lead singer Simon LeBon moved around the stage a bit more slowly than expected, but after warming up really got his groove on with overly dramatic arm swinging and hip thrusting much to the delight of me (and all other Simon fanatics). John Taylor kind of loped around the stage playing the bass guitar, singing backup and doing his best to impersonate a tarantula come to life. (I can't help it-he's just all limbs and lanky). Nick Rhodes was surrounded with many keyboards and a strategically placed Macbook Pro. (I secretly wondering if he was surfing the 'net the whole performance?) and Roger did what he does best-hugging the shadows playing on his drum set.

I got a little shot of adrenaline when I saw mega hip-hop producer Timbaland dancing as his image was projected on one of the silk screen backdrops behind Simon, but alas no Justin Timberlake cameos. It's a good thing because my poor heart would have literally stopped beating that night. (When I heard last year that Duran Duran was collaborating with Timbaland and my boy Justin Timberlake on their upcoming album, I defined it as my own personal music trifecta.)

It's a lot to ask an audience to watch a live performance of completely new material. I was fortunate to have heard their song 'Night Runner' from a sneak peak thanks to Entertainment Weekly and had also heard their single 'Falling Down' several times before the show. It was a nice touch that they showed their new video during the performance and I noted that this version contained ample nudity not seen before. Michelle, at one point, commented that the bulk of their new songs kind of sounded like porno music. Her apt observation reminded me once again of how ecstatic I am of the Timbland/Timberlake influence. FutureSexLoveSongs indeed!

They transitioned from their last new song 'Last Man Standing' to 'Notorious' which whipped the crowd into an already heightened frenzy because FINALLY everyone recognized a song. Seriously, Simon's voice was amazing during the entire performance and I particularly loved that song. (American Idol judge Randy Jackson would have approved of Simon's perfect pitch)

When they played 'I Take the Dice' Michelle was barely able to hold her camera steady as she capture the performance on video because she was so excited. That song was historical for both of us because we had never heard it performed live until that night.

Just as I was leaning in to tell Michelle that I would lose my shit if they played 'The Reflex'--BAM! My dream came true and Michelle got the video rolling again. I became consumed with emotion and began crying as I happily bounced to/fro because that is my favorite song in the enormous Duran Duran catalog. 'The Reflex' reminds me of being a teen and what it felt like to stoke my Duranie obsession with any spare money I could get my hands on. For me, that song evokes memories of buying 13" remix albums, plastering my walls with 8x10 photos ripped out of TeenBeat magazine while my grandmother bitched at me for putting holes in the wallpaper and watching MTV world premiere music videos in my basement.

The encore performance of 'Girls On Film' ended an amazing evening. I left feeling satiated with nostalgia and continued bright hope for the band's success with their new CD.

Read Michelle's blog about the performance along with links to the two videos she shot with her Kodak EasyShare camera and some great photos posted on Flickr by clicking here.

If your curious, below is the Set List of their 10/28 performance:

Red Carpet Massacre
The Valley
Red Carpet Massacre
Falling DownBox
Full o’Honey
Skin Divers
Tricked Out
Zoom In
She’s Too Much
Dirty Great Monster
Last Man Standing
One of These Days
I Take the Dice
Ordinary World
Do You Believe in Shame?
Lay Lady Lay
A View to a Kill
The Reflex
Girls on Film

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  1. This is a perfect critique...not completely saccharine but in the same token not completely negative either.

    Sounds like an interesting experience!