New York Jones Beach Theater

It's [b]Durannie[/b] heaven...

It’s Durannie heaven at Jones Beach tonight. The band’s only original members, Simon Le Bon and Nick Rhodes, are welcomed as the kings of a bygone era – and they are. Slinky Simon‘s in white from head to toe; his shirt hanging on by a button, the presence of underwear questionable. Nick‘s as stoic and pretty as ever, and there’s nary a middle-aged gut between them.

The same can’t be said of the audience, which is definitely a little older than the average concert crowd. But no matter – they came here tonight to shake parts of their body they haven’t moved in a while, and, thanks to a set loaded with hits, the band gives them reason to boogie…

And to rest. For that’s exactly what happens when the group plays material from later albums such as this year’s ‘Pop Trash’. Like a switch, the hits turn people on and ignite their inner glam, while the newer songs immediately extinguish that energy.

Nothing can bring Simon down, however. He is a true performer from the Elvis school of seductive slithers and lusty self-touches, and he exploits his sex symbol image for all it’s worth. Luckily, it still works (OK, so maybe it’s the white pants and what’s clearly in them), but even if it didn’t, Le Bon is so endearing that he’s adorable nonetheless.

“It’s beautiful out here, isn’t it?” he wonders aloud before launching into ‘New Moon on Monday’. Two false starts on ‘Come Undone’ lead him to explain, “It’s always better the third time around, you lucky people.” And during ‘Notorious’, the first song of the first encore, he gets “a little healthy competition” going by engaging the crowd in a two-part chant of the song’s name.

He’s goofy, too, and runs the risk of self-parody. For ‘Hallucinating Elvis’, LeBon throws on a garish sequinned shirt and shades in kitschy homage to the King. It’s tacky and funny, but that’s the point: Duran Duran has always flirted with pop culture and the trash that litters it. They just need to make sure they don’t fall into the bin themselves.