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19 October, 2014

HOT METRO FINDS: Rare Adam and the Ants Tracks Make Their Way To The Web

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Adam and the Ants rare tracks find their way to the web - 1976

Adam and the Ants rare tracks find their way to the web – 1976

¬†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.

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One thought on “HOT METRO FINDS: Rare Adam and the Ants Tracks Make Their Way To The Web”

  • magsmagenta
    October 20, 2014 at 1:36 pm

    I was a massive Adam and the Ants fan in the early 80’s, I was in my mid teens then and the whole world of music and media was so different, it was much more difficult to tell what was really going on. I missed the Punk years basically because I was too young to be allowed to join in and I didn’t really get it at that age anyway. Adam was a big influence on my life and his music and attitude helped me get through some difficult times at school where I was being bullied and never fitted in but could not understand why. Adam made me realise that it didn’t matter if I didn’t fit in, and that I shouldn’t even try to, and counter intuitively once I stopped trying to fit in and did my own thing instead the bullying mostly stopped.
    The story I read in the press at the time when Adam and the Ants were at their most popular was that Adam was signed to Malcom Maclarens management/label with his original Ants, and was busy working on the sound for the record, including the tribal beats ect, but one day he turned up to find that he’d been fired from his own band and replaced by Annabella Lu Win. Malcom Mclaren then stole his sound and released the band as Bow Wow Wow. But they never achieved the Success that Adam did with his new Ants including Marco Perroni, who helped him finish the sond and co wrote the songs for the Kings of the Wild Frontiers album, and for Prince Charming.
    After this things seemed to be going downhill which with hindsight must have been down to Adams mental state and his fight with Bi Polar disorder, which I knew nothing about at the time.
    I lost track of him as he disappeared from the mainstream media, obviously now I would have been able to easily find out what was going on but not then.
    My attention switched to following Iron Maiden and Heavy Metal bands, which is no so much of a stretch as you may think.
    I hope this helps.

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