Adam Ant | The Blueback Hussar Invades the Gateway City

adamant LH_75In an age where pop stars are born from television programs and have a shelf life that brings Andy Warhol’s “15 minutes of fame” theory closer to a sad reality, it’s nice to see late-career comebacks like the one Ant is currently riding.

 

adamant LH_500

Adam Ant photos: Laura Hamlett

He was MTV’s Prince Charming, the dandy highwayman who reigned supreme alongside the likes of fellow chart-toppers Duran Duran and Culture Club in the raging ‘80s. Adam Ant was tops at a time when artists used both style and substance to craft unique artistic statements that could be enjoyed anywhere from the dance floor to Friday Night Videos.  

After a number of personal problems stunted his output and turned him into a veritable recluse, Adam Ant surprised his legion of fans this year with his first album in 17 years, the brilliant and autobiographical Adam Ant Is the Blueblack Hussar in Marrying the Gunner’s Daughter. The album has been a well-earned critical success, and displays his penchant for impossible-to-ignore melodies stitched into esoteric arrangements and sprawling emotional displays.

Bringing his painted pirate character back to life for the first time in literally decades, Ant is touring to promote his new release, and fans can expect to hear a proper mix of classics and soon-to-be classics. The hits, including “Strip,” “Goody Two Shoes,” and “Wonderful” are expected to share set-list space with new tracks like the scrappy and raw “Hardmentoughblokes” and the album’s deep grooving first single, “Cool Zombie.” Ant devotees should also be thrilled to know that he’ll be sprinkling in some deep cuts from his days as leader of seminal punk rockers Adam & the Ants.

In an age where pop stars are born from television programs and have a shelf life that brings Andy Warhol’s “15 minutes of fame” theory closer to a sad reality, it’s nice to see late-career comebacks like the one Ant is currently riding. With a history that includes theater, film work, and a back catalog of both chart-topping hits and underground anthems, he’s clearly still an icon who is a delightful work-in-progress.

With many miles logged on this current tour, Adam Ant and his merry kings of the wild frontier should be a well-oiled and Technicolor-splashed machine by the time they hit St. Louis with an all-too-rare appearance. Opening for Ant will be Los Angeles garage-rockers Prima Donna, a picture-perfect match made in glam heaven. This is an ant invasion you won’t want to miss. | Jim Ousley

Adam Ant plays Plush in St. Louis on Friday, August 2; doors 8 p.m., tickets $25. Prima Donna opens.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply