Simon LeBon - vocals; Andy Taylor - guitar; John Taylor - bass; Nick Rhodes - keyboards; Roger Taylor - drums; Andy Hamilton - saxophone, percussion, keyboards
Duran Duran's success in America largely coincided with the launch and warp-speed growth of MTV. Knowing early on they had to embrace the concept of music videos and high fashion to be successful, these five musicians from Birmingham, England learned how to sing and act to the TV cameras, keeping millions of young teenage girls extremely excited as they watched from their living rooms across the world.
Due primarily to the fact that the band so easily embraced the world of music videos (theirs often modeled hit movies of the time), Duran Duran went from a trendy London club band to international superstars in less than eighteen months.
Musically, Duran Duran was always several notches above many of their new wave contemporaries, and this recording proves the fact. The rhythm section of John, Andy and Roger Taylor was tight and powerful; keyboardist Nick Rhodes often brought innovative sequenced sounds to the songs; and lead vocalist Simon LeBon was simply the first major charismatic pop star of the 1980s.
This recording was done in the band's native U.K., at the famed Hammersmith Odeon in London. The band had already topped the U.K charts with "Girls On Film" and "Planet Earth," and their current LP at the time, Rio, had become a simultaneous hit on both sides of the Atlantic with the songs "Hungry Like The Wolf" and "Save A Prayer."
This was a big homecoming show for the band, and after this concert they were too big in the U.K. to play intimate theaters, and subsequently graduated to full-sized arenas. The electricity in the audience is also apparent onstage, especially in songs like "Rio," "Save A Prayer" and the usual show closer, "Girls On Film," which gets a seven-minute treatment during this performance. For this tour, and for future road treks, the original five-piece lineup was supplemented by Andy Hamilton on sax, percussion and keyboards.