Live Review: Adam Ant’s ANThems Sizzled at Humphreys Concerts by the Bay

Adam Ant at Humphreys Concerts by the Bay on Shelter Island, San Diego, Sunday, July 29, 2018. All Photos by Billy Bennight for The Los Angeles Beat

This quote by Moby got my attention the other day. “PS: #adamant was amazing. The last time I saw him was in 1982 when he literally arrived at the venue (a pier in the Hudson River) on a pirate ship. I know that Adam has battled some demons over the years, but whatever he’s done to triumph over the demons is clearly working.”

It took me back to when I saw Adam Ant at The Greek Theater within the same time frame as Moby. It was a highly anticipated evening from the breakthrough British music star supporting his album “Kings of the Wild Frontier” that night at The Greek. It was an epic evening where his fans were dressed to kill, matching Adam’s fanciful approach to fashion that was so dearly attached to his music of jangly-riffy guitars surges, spilling over Burundi beat/tribally inspired polyrhythms, mixed with his Punkish bravado, most closely acquainted with the New Romantic movement of the time.

I missed his invasion last year at the Fonda. But Bob Lee wrote about his experience in his Live Review – Adam Ant at the Fonda Theater. Since Adam Ant has wrapped his way around the world for over the last year supporting his sizable catalog he has returned to Southern California once again to redouble his efforts to conquer the music lovers in our land with his trademark Ant Invasion. I caught up with him in San Diego for a great high energy show at Humphrey’s Concerts by the Bay on Shelter Island.

Photo Gallery after the Break

Adam Ant at Humphreys Concerts by the Bay on Shelter Island, San Diego, Sunday, July 29, 2018.

After the Glam Skanks performed it wasn’t too long before Adam and crew occupied the stage by opening the set with the high energy Dog Eat Dog from Kings Of The Wild Frontier. I’d be remiss in not acknowledging Adam’s wardrobe choices for the evening’s proceedings. He launched his set with Dog Eat Dog clad in a delicious looking coffee brown collarless leather jacket highlighted in floral inspired soutache with six zink coated molded brass buttons with insignias ensconced in the lavish braid, matching pantalóns and knee-high military boots.

Adam topped it off his look with a brilliant Regency flavored Panama straw hat with a neatly tucked away scarf of red fringe drifting down his neck and shoulders. He cruised through Vive Le Rock, Ant Music, Friend or Foe, and Desperate (But Not Serious), before he shed his fashionable brown bovine skin for an airy and cool white tour t-shirt, sleeves rolled up appropriately to rock!

The second half of the set with kicked off by B Sides Baby, which was a bluesy straight ahead rocker, where Adam busted into some juicy harmonica riffs. Prince Charming, Christian D’or, and Strip led up to the close of the set, where the audience was often a willing participants, singing along and grooving, to what Adam was laying down. Then the stage went black and the band vanished.

Whistles and cheers prevailed and Adam and crew were once again lined up on the stage for must happen encore of songs we longed to hear but he hadn’t yet played. Stand And Deliver was a sing-a-long joy we all wanted. Goody Two Shoes was a song everyone was familiar with and singing along was spontaneous and pervasive amongst the fans. The song was flawlessly delivered, but I missed the richness that the horns gave in the original recording.

Honestly, I don’t think it would be an Adam and the Ants concert without Stand and Deliver, the most salient, the most powerful ANThem that Adam has ever penned! Stand and Deliver resonated with our wily Punk Rock sensibilities, conveying our cavalier mischievous exploits and no-nonsense approach to confrontation of an adversary or adversarial situation, where we and our generations called the shots. The Humphrey’s stage sizzled and the fans went wild quoting every exalted word! Showbiz didn’t lose as Adam assailed San Diego, the west coast, the continent and the world with his feverishly delivered Ant music ANThems!

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Billy Bennight

About Billy Bennight

Billy Bennight is a writer, photographer and wardrobe stylist with expertise and years of experience in these disciplines. His musical youth started as a Punk Rocker and has expanded into exploring many genres of music, with an keen interest in art, fashion, photography and writing. He shoots celebrity events and red carpets for The Photo Access and ZUMA Press. He is a member of the Los Angeles Art Association. His images have been published in The Los Angeles Times, People Magazine, Wall Street Journal and Vanity Fair. He's very engaged in life. You can follow him on his Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/billybennightartist and on Instagram and Twitter @billybennight
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