Editors’ Notes When Adam & The Ants exploded worldwide with 1980's Kings of the Wild Frontier, few outside of England realized that Adam had led a very different batch of Ants in '79 on Dirk Wears White Sox. While Kings is full of perky pop exotica, Dirk is an artier, more angular, intense affair, more in line with the first wave of postpunk blooming in the late-'70s U.K. At the time, the Ants included guitarist Matthew Ashman and drummer Dave Barbarossa (who went on to form Bow Wow Wow) and bassist Andy Warren (future cofounder of The Monochrome Set). While the tunes bear punk-informed energy and edge, they're considerably more complex than punk. Lyrically, the wry, sly Adam alternates between quirky ("Cleopatra," "Day I Met God") and kinky ("Whip in My Valise," "Physical") in his subjects. And while Ashman's riffs don't employ the kind of pop hooks utilized by his successor Marco Pirroni, he provides plenty of arch atmosphere for Adam. "Physical" would be rerecorded for Kings, but otherwise, Dirk is a decidedly singular chapter in Ant history.

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