Duran Duran at the Birmingham NIA

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Duran Duran at the Birmingham NIA
Jul 8 2008

IT was a sentimental homecoming for Brummie ‘Wild Boys’ Duran Duran as they performed their first ever gig at Birmingham NIA, just a stones throw away from where the band made their name.

There was plenty of reminiscing - and not just over writing and rehearsing their most famous hits in Broad Street, at the former Rum Runner club.

Last night’s two hour concert was also dedicated to the memory of Roger Bates , the father of keyboard player Nick Rhodes, who died suddenly last month at the age of 69.
Huge paparazzi style flash bulbs adorned the stage as the band opened with tracks from their latest album Red Carpet Massacre.

Frontman Simon Le Bon, in fine voice and still exhibiting the charm and free spirit of old, even stood on his own little piece of red carpet.

Time has obviously been good to Le Bon and fellow band mates Roger Taylor, Nick Rhodes and John Taylor for despite losing one of their original line-up over the decades, they have managed to retain their boisterous spirit, glamour and even bleached blond hair.

It wasn’t long until the classics started making an appearance with Planet Earth being thrown in early, to obvious delight, as were Save a Prayer, Girls On Film and Hungry Like A Wolf, played especially for Rhodes’ father.

“You may have been at the NIA before and not heard songs written on this very street, but tonight you will hear many,” said bass player John Taylor.

“The Rum Runner is now a fitness suite at the Hyatt Hotel, but that place was very good to us. We should have been on the barricades when it came down.”

Midway, Duran Duran swapped jeans, shirts and ties for smart black shiny suits and synthesizers for an electro section before returning to their instruments to close the show with more of the ‘Broad Street Collection’, raising the roof with Wild Boys and Rio.
“We are Duran Duran, a local outfit, here to make you party,” screamed Le Bon. It felt like the band were back in the Rum Runner after all.


Courtesy Birmingham Mail