If it seems like just yesterday when Duran Duran brought their hits to venues around North America, it’s because their ‘Future Past ‘Tour has been going on for the last two years! It’s obviously never enough for their enormous fan base as they continue to sell out venue after venue across North America, Europe and the UK. Nile Rodgers and Chic continues to support Duran Duran on this leg of the tour and British pop band B∆stille was also added as a supporting act. Unfortunately, due to illness with one of the band members, B∆stille had to cancel right before showtime at CMAC in Canandaigua, NY on Sunday, September 3rd.
While the show ended up starting late due to the late cancellation, Nile Rodgers and Chic picked up the slack in fine fashion. Kicking off the show with their signature “Le Freak”, they had the crowd up and dancing from the first note! While the focus was deservedly on Rodgers, who talked about the songs that he had written or produced for Chic and many other artists, singers Kimberly Davis and Audrey Martells charmed the crowd with their amazing voices and flirtatious looks. Rodgers and crew played a nice mix of Chic songs and songs that Rodgers had written or produced, including “Like a Virgin” and “Material Girl” by Madonna, “Let’s Dance” by David Bowie, “and “Get Lucky” by Daft Punk, and “CUFF IT” by Beyonce! What an incredible discography!! Although many expected them to possibly extend their set due to B∆stille backing out, it wasn’t to be and they bowed out after their regular set.
1. Le Freak
2. Everybody Dance
3. Dance Dance Dance
4. I Want Your Love
5. I’m Coming Out / Upside Down (Diana Ross covers)
6. He’s the Greatest Dancer / We Are Family (Sister Sledge covers)
7. Like a Virgin / Material Girl (Madonna covers)
8. Modern Love (David Bowie cover)
9. CUFF IT (Beyonce cover)
10. Get Lucky (Daft Punk cover)
11. Let’s Dance (David Bowie cover)
12. Good Times / Rapper’s Delight (Sugarhill Gang cover)
As Duran Duran prepared to take the stage, the video background displayed futuristic scenes reminiscent of Blade Runner, with flying cars and the members of the band in futuristic outfits. The boys take the stage in shadow and kicked off their set with “Night Boat”, a fan favorite from their self-titled debut album. As they continued with “Wild Boys” and “Hungry Like the Wolf”, you knew that the whole show would be a showcase of all top hits! The band sounded great and, with the exception of the beginning of “Is There Something I Should Know”, Simon LeBon’s voice was spot on! The only thing that was off a bit was the slight delay between the live action and the big screens… not much, but just enough to make you double take. Some of Duran Duran’s visuals seemed to play off the Halloween theme of their upcoming album Danse Macabre, with a spooky baby doll and skeletons shown during “Lonely in Your Nightmare” and eyeballs and horror film stars during friends of mine. At one point, as cameras at the stage panned the audience, there was a very fun overlay of fans’ faces on the side big screens! Hilarious!!
At least half of Duran Duran’s set came from the first two best-selling records Duran Duran and Rio, with “Come Undone” (with the extraordinary Anna Ross) and “Ordinary World” (dedicated to the citizens of Ukraine) from the wedding album, “The Reflex” from Seven and the Ragged Tiger, “A View to a Kill”, “Notorious”, and their cover of “White Lines” being exceptions. Interestingly, they only played two songs from Future Past, even though this was the ‘Future Past’ Tour. They were “Anniversary” and “Give It All Up” (with the amazing Rachael O’Connor), which really should be a dance hit! After closing out their main set with “Girls on Film”, the band came back for an encore of two of their biggest hits “Save a Prayer” and “Rio”.
The setlist was everything the casual Duran Duran fan could ask for… every big hit you could possibly think of. For those who have been following the band through every tour, they might perhaps like to hear some more b-sides. Even though “White Lines” is usually a hit with the crowds but, with such an incredible discography of songs, it’s not clear why Duran Duran doesn’t just play another one of their own songs. A tour with nothing but non-hits, understanding that may not sell out arenas, would thrill many of their adoring fans. This is not to say that it was not still an amazing show. If they were to tour again with the exact same setlist, you can bet that thousands of Duranies would be right back in the audience!!
1. Night Boat
2. Wild Boys
3. Hungry Like the Wolf
4. A View to a Kill
6. Give It All Up
7. Lonely in Your Nightmare
8. Is There Something I Should Know
10. Friends of Mine
11. Careless Memories
12. Ordinary World
13. Come Undone
14. Planet Earth
15. White Lines
16. The Reflex
17. Girls on Film
18. Save a Prayer