Its not that I don’t like Adam Ant, its just that I couldn’t give a monkey’s cuss about him. I’m not really a pop person (mostly) and I’m certainly not inclined to the 80’s and new romanticism. So my first instinct was to keep very quiet about the whole thing. Then I remembered that Ken has large soft spot for Mr. Ant. So this is a gift to you Ken.
I think the first band on were called Krakatoa. They should have been called Knobheads Up A Pole because that’s what they were. Immaculately dressed and coiffed, with a singer who seemed to think that Liam Gallagher has it all worked out, the band played punky / ska-y retro bollocks that made me yawn till my jaw crunched, which was more pleasant than listening to their clap a long arse fest by a long way. Utter shit.
So next up was Adam Ant. He appeared in a pirate hat, big glasses and his classic Highwayman garb and launched into … something I have never heard before. That wasn’t great, apparently something from a new album…so far, so uninspiring. Then he played a couple more things I don’t know. Felt nothing. Literally nothing. His band of two drummers, guitarist and bassist were competent but in a soulless session band sort of way that meant any songs that weren’t among his “hits” just didn’t mean anything. But then he played “Kings Of The Wild Frontier” and suddenly it all changed. Something clicked for Adam and his band and the audience and it was for a few minutes pretty stirring stuff. Sadly then it ebbed away with the inevitable new guff. Cue wiggly pretty girls singing at the front, looking like something from Top Of the Pops in 1986, to distract the audience from the uneventfulness of the music.
“Prince Charming” arrived and sent everyone bonkers, and while it was quite engaging, I found myself thinking about what a weird song it is consisting of two chords and a minimal refrain that only lasts for a couple of minutes, its odd stuff really for such a big hit. More bad songs then “Stand And Deliver” which he shouted in a pretty tuneless way, but it was another moment where you could see why Ant became a global star, albeit briefly. Then it was all over….or if it would have been it would have been pretty good over all. But he insisted on coming back to an encore of a T Rex cover (ouch) and “Physical” which was covered (much better than the original) by Nine Inch Nails.
Special mention must go to Adam Ant for being a pretty charismatic and funny guy, if somewhat bitter. He told stories about Live Aid and had an unjustified go at Trent Reznor and really was very fun to watch, but for me personally he needs to sack his band and stick to playing a set no longer than twenty minutes.