Review by: Gareth Stevenson
Artist: Adam Ant [score 5/5]
Adam Ant returned to where he belonged last night... centre stage fronting a fantastic band with an adoring audience. The Prince Charming of Pop is in the middle of his UK comeback tour, and has been wowing cities across the country.
I caught him at Parr Hall, Warrington on Saturday 25th August and wasn't quite sure what to expect. I was one of those youngsters with Tippex on my nose and braided hair in the 1980's whose life path was changed by this enigmatic man and his wonderfully different music.
Parr Hall was pretty full, and buzzing with anticipation already when the support band appeared... and what a refreshing support act this was... Johnny Normal from Birmingham. Their set began with an ear-shattering extra-terrestrial wall of noise and then bang into 'Remember Me' , a Numanesque synth-led song which saw the guitarist burst into life and command the stage. The second song ‘How You Destroy Me’ struck a chord with the crowd and they were singing back the chorus as if it was an old favourite. Bravely the guys performed two of Adam’s own songs ‘Ants Invasion’ and ‘Killer in the Home’, versions approved by Mister Ant himself. The noisey audience were really into this act as they performed 10 engaging and exciting tracks and it was great to see a connection there, which is unusual these days. Top band, nice guys too.
In no time Adam's band appeared on the stage in an eerie darkness, accompanied by an atmospheric track to increase the anticipation. The room was crammed and the crowd were excited as the stately figure in trademark Hussar jacket strutted majestically across the stage, raising a wry smile. The audience went berserk… Adam Ant is in the house! It was amazing to see the passion that people still have for this iconic man. As the band attacked their first number, with two drummers a stylish guitar and bass section, with the lovely, lovely Georgina Baillie, this new Ant sound was raw, exciting, edgy and more grown up… and Adam carried the audience with him from the first song .
It's amazing to see the punishing tour schedule he and the band have endured this year, but they were fresh and here for a purpose... to shut up the doubters.
There were a few songs not so familiar to me (b-sides and album tracks, which were fab) as well as a whole catalogue I new very well indeed… Antmusic, Deutscher Girls,Stand & Deliver, Goody Two Shoes, Prince Charming, Lady, Christian D’Or, Red Scab, Fat Fun, Dog Eat Dog, Beat My Guest, Wonderful, Plastic Surgery, Car Trouble, Catholic Day, Kings of the Wild Frontier, Puss in Boots, Physical, Vince Taylor and also a wonderful version of T-Rex’s 20th Century Boy…. there may have been others in the almost 2 hour set... now that's value for you!
When the audience finally let the band leave the stage and the light came on, you could see the crowd were exhausted and very happy. From the wonderful support band to the end of Adam’s fantastic set, this was a brilliant night… and one of the best all-round concerts I have been to in years. I caught up with the support band in the merchandise area and they dismissed the myth of Adam Ant being a difficult PrimaDonna. They summed it up quite nicely.."He's a legend... He's Adam Ant".