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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Reissue of post-punk classic from 1979...., 22 May 2005
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This review is from: Dirk Wears White Sox (Audio CD)
'Dirk Wears White Sox' (a title that would be used later in the chorus of 'Don't Be Square (Be There)' from 'Kings of the Wild Frontier') was the sole album from the original Adam & the Ants- a band who would largely become Bow Wow Wow and who were more famous at the time for appearing in Derek Jarman's 'Jubilee.'
This budget-priced reissue, released alongside the great 'Kings...' (1980) & the popular 'Prince Charming' (1981)is in many ways greater than the commercial peak Ant is known for. This is probably due to the fact that no hits are here, so we don't have the cloud of nostalgia and good feeling get in the way. The other thing is, this collection of songs is a fantastic display of post-punk - sounding not unlike peers such as Subway Sect, Josef-K, The Fall, The Slits & Wire. Thus the angular-guitar-pop on display makes complete sense today in an age of similar sounding acts including Bloc Party, Franz Ferdinand, Interpol & The Futureheads...
This version of 'Dirk...', overseen by long-time Ant-associate Marco Pirroni, offers up a wonderfully-packaged, remastered collection that not only includes the original 1979-album, but also the singles 'Zerox'/'Whip in My Valise' & 'Cartrouble/Kick' alongside a 1982 e.p. of remixed-tracks from the 'Dirk'-era. It's notable that two popular acts from the 1990s would cover songs from here- Elastica covering 'Cleopatra' (on a bonus-single with their debut) and Nine Inch Nails covering 'Physical' on their 1992 'Broken' e.p.
'Dirk...' is a great achievment and shows that Ant can do the indie-thing with ease- here it is perfected, so it makes sense that like Green Gartside (Scritti Politti) he shifted to pop from indie/post-punk/D.I.Y. Ant not only composes all the songs here, but he produces the record and plays several instruments alongside the tight-band that also includes David Barbe, Matthew Ashman & Andrew Warren.
I love it all, highlights include 'Tabletalk', 'Never Trust a Man (With Egg On His Face)- which is very Blur, 'Catholic Day' (a companion to Magazine's 'Motorcade'), 'Cartrouble (Parts 1 & 2)' & 'Animals and Men' (which predates The Art of Noise in the futurist-alluding stakes!).
An excellent collection, an album that deserves to find a posthumous audience in the climate with a penchant for post-punk and ultimately something that if released today by a new band would have the N.M.E. excited, provided the singer could get a drugs-problem and/or celebrity girlfriend!!!
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Location: Worcester, UK

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