19 October, 2014
HOT METRO FINDS: Rare Adam and the Ants Tracks Make Their Way To The Web
Ultra rare tracks by Adam and the Ants, the legendary Punk band from the UK 1976, are finding their way onto Youtube. These are for the hardcore indie music scholars more than anything. There are a few full concerts that have been released from the, “Screen on the Green” period. This would have been right after 1976 when Adam Ant was in his original band, Bazooka Joe. The tracks that are coming out illustrate a creative period in Ant’s rising career as an artist. One can hear a bit of Lou Reed and Syd Barrett in the tracks and yet the songs carry a playful melody that would later become his trademark sound.
Adam Ant was around from the very beginning and actually opened up for the Sex Pistols very first gig at an art college. They also managed by Sex Pistol manager Malcom McLaren and took on some of the fashions of designer Vivienne Westwood. I actually contacted Adam Ant a year ago to ask him specific details about who influenced who in the early years of punk and he declined a response. I found this particularly frustrating because I found him to be very charismatic and artistic and just as much as an equal to the Sex Pistols in style. But trying to figure out the relationship of who was the bigger influence on who when it comes to Adam Ant, The Sex Pistols, Malcom McLaren and Vivienne Westwood has left me befuddled. They all had this symbiotic relationship.
Ant is being very tight lipped about the whole thing and has gone off to reinvent himself again with a whole new look and sound. I would like to believe that it was Adam Ant himself who really forged something powerful when it comes to dress and his sound. But when you look at Bow Wow Wow, another band Malcom managed, it becomes kind of confusing. That band dressed up in tribal gear and looked just as rebellious and outlandish as Adam.
Malcom McLaren died a few years ago and with him went all of the myth making. Designer Vivienne Westwood is still alive but is doing high end fashion these days. I could ask John Lydon, (Johnny Rotten) and get his take on the whole thing because he does have a new book out now. Lydon wasn’t part of the original scene when the idea for music came into fruition. Johnny Rotten had to audition to be in the group to see if he was even good enough to be around the group of counter culture movers and shakers. So the early sounds, the ideas, and the blueprint for what was to become Adam Ant and the Sex Pistols were quietly being hatched at the SEX clothing shop with McLaren, Westwood, Adam Ant and the Pistols first two members Steve Jones and Paul Cook.
One day Adam Ant may fill us all in on the exact details about those early years but for now it appears that he is taking full credit. And with that… enjoy… Il Duce.