Duran Duran with Neon Trees

The Joint at the Hard Rock, Sept. 30

Celebrating an incredible year with their debut album, Habits, the flashy Utah pop band Neon Trees played a fun, upbeat set. Vocalist Tyler Glenn—in a red glitter jacket and a Mohawk—delved into ’80s nostalgia, speaking about making mixed tapes and his love of Duran Duran. Glenn launched into “1983,” “Sins of My Youth” and their first single, “Animal,” which made platinum on Billboard Hot 100.

Diehard Duran Duran fans, older now, roared as the band entered the stage. They heard “Planet Earth,” “Rio,” “Come Undone” and “Wild Boys” as the band mashed the song into Frankie Goes to Hollywood’s “Relax (Don’t Do it).” Special effects appeared on four giant faces above the stage. Matrix-like effects accompanied the new song “Blame the Machines.” Bassist John Taylor encouraged the crowd to Tweet, using #duranlive when Simon Le Bon took a break. And yes, after 30 years, Duran Duran is still worth Tweeting home about.

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For a superstar with unbelievable looks, charm, versatility and range, it is positively astounding how much time and energy Hugh Jackman wastes on mediocre movies. So from the previews, I dreaded Real Steel. An action flick about boxing robots? I made plans to be out of town. Well, I guess there’s no fool like an old fool. I have seen Real Steel. Get ready. It is exciting, palpitating, surprisingly fresh, action-packed, double-barreled dynamite.

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