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DURAN DURAN ARE STILL MASTERS OF PERFECT POWER POP

Duran Duran, Nottingham - review by Mel Atkinson
10:30 - 13 April 2004

It's two decades since they dominated the charts, but Duran Duran are back and better than ever.

A packed Nottingham Arena was treated to 20 doses of perfect power pop in a stunning two-hour set.

The 10,000-strong crowd was warmed-up by the epic, charismatic Goldfrapp before the five Durans began their musical assault.

Any lingering fears that this would be half-hearted 80s karaoke were blown away by tight performances of classics such as Planet Earth, Notorious and Ordinary World.

Simon le Bon was clearly enjoying himself, sashaying around while displaying a new strength to his vocals.

He prowled the stage alongside bassist John Taylor and guitarist Andy Taylor, who provided the funk-rock drive.

Chart hits dominated, but they were deftly mixed with three well-received new songs and some golden oldies including the atmospheric Tiger, Tiger.

The band's renewed verve and enthusiasm showed that this is more than a Duran Duran pension tour.

The 30-something audience shouted its approval - including the 50 per cent who were men.

Few fashions from the 1980s have stood the test of time. Shockingly, an older and punchier Duran Duran might prove to be the exception.

* Duran Duran are at Birmingham NEC on April 18, 19 and 25 and Sheffield Arena on April 27.

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