Kings of the Wild Frontier

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Kings of the Wild Frontier
Studio album by Adam and the Ants
Released November 1980
Recorded August 1980 at Rockfield Studios, Wales
Genre New wave, post-punk, New Romantic
Length 47:21
Label CBS Records
Epic (international)
Producer Chris Hughes
Adam and the Ants chronology
Dirk Wears White Sox
(1979)
Kings of the Wild Frontier
(1980)
Prince Charming
(1981)

Kings of the Wild Frontier is the second album by English new wave band Adam and the Ants. It was released in November 1980 by record label CBS. This album introduced the new Burundi Beat drum sound to popular music.[1]

Background & recording[edit]

After having his previous backing band wooed away by producer Malcolm McLaren, who used them to form Bow Wow Wow, Adam Ant recorded Kings of the Wild Frontier with guitarist Marco Pirroni as his new writing partner.

Release[edit]

Kings of the Wild Frontier was released in November 1980 by record label CBS in the UK and Epic records internationally. It reached No. 1 in the UK Album Chart,[2] and spawned three hit singles: "Kings of the Wild Frontier", which was released July and reached No. 2 in the UK Singles Chart; "Dog Eat Dog", which reached No. 4; and 'Antmusic', released in December and reaching No. 2,[3] as well as No. 1 in Australia for five weeks.[4] The album was the UK number 1 selling album in 1981 (and the 48th best seller in 1980) and won Best British Album at the 1982 Brit Awards.

The US version of the album dropped "Making History" in favour of two tracks penned by Ant prior to teaming up with Marco Pirroni, "(You're So) Physical" and "Press Darlings".

The album was remastered and reissued in 2004 with several bonus tracks.

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 4.5/5 stars[5]
Robert Christgau B[6]
Rolling Stone 3.5/5 stars[7]

In his retrospective review, Stephen Thomas Erlewine of AllMusic called it "one of the great defining albums of its time. There's simply nothing else like it, nothing else that has the same bravado, the same swagger, the same gleeful self-aggrandizement and sense of camp. This walked a brilliant line between campiness and art-house chutzpah, and it arrived at precisely the right time – at the forefront of new wave".[5]

Legacy[edit]

Kings of the Wild Frontier is included in the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

Track listing[edit]

All songs written and composed by Adam Ant and Marco Pirroni, except as noted. 

Side A
No. Title Length
1. "Dog Eat Dog"   3:11
2. "'Antmusic'"   3:37
3. "Feed Me to the Lions"   3:03
4. "Los Rancheros"   3:30
5. "Ants Invasion"   3:19
6. "Killer in the Home"   4:22
Side B
No. Title Length
1. "Kings of the Wild Frontier"   3:56
2. "The Magnificent Five"   3:07
3. "Don't Be Square (Be There)"   3:32
4. "Jolly Roger"   2:11
5. "Making History"   2:59
6. "The Human Beings"   4:32

US version[edit]

Side A
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Dog Eat Dog"     3:07
2. "Antmusic"     3:36
3. "Los Rancheros"     3:28
4. "Feed Me to the Lions"     2:59
5. "Press Darlings"   Ant 4:12
6. "Ants Invasion"     3:20
7. "Killer in the Home"     4:19
Side B
No. Title Length
1. "Kings of the Wild Frontier"   3:53
2. "The Magnificent Five"   3:05
3. "Don't Be Square (Be There)"   3:29
4. "Jolly Roger"   2:09
5. "Physical (You're So)"   4:26
6. "The Human Beings"   4:24
Cassette version
Side A
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Dog Eat Dog"     3:07
2. "Jolly Roger"     2:09
3. "Los Rancheros"     3:28
4. "Feed Me to the Lions"     2:59
5. "Press Darlings"   Ant 4:12
6. "Ants Invasion"     3:20
7. "Killer in the Home"     4:19
8. "Beat My Guest"   Ant 3:12
Side B
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Kings of the Wild Frontier"     3:53
2. "The Magnificent Five"     3:05
3. "Don't Be Square (Be There)"     3:29
4. "Antmusic"     3:36
5. "Physical (You're So)"   Ant 4:26
6. "The Human Beings"     4:24
7. "Stand and Deliver"     3:06

Personnel[edit]

Adam and the Ants

Chart positions[edit]

Album
Chart (1981) Peak
position
UK Albums Chart 1[2]
Billboard 200 44[citation needed]

Singles

Year Single Chart Peak
position
1980 "Kings of the Wild Frontier" UK Singles Chart 48[3]
"Dog Eat Dog" 4[3]
"Antmusic" 2[3]
1981 "Kings of the Wild Frontier" (re-release) 2[3]
"Dog Eat Dog" Billboard Club Play Singles 19[citation needed]
"Antmusic" Billboard Mainstream Rock 14[citation needed]
"Dog Eat Dog" Billboard Mainstream Rock 15[citation needed]
"Physical (You're So)" Billboard Mainstream Rock 19[citation needed]
Preceded by
Super Trouper by ABBA
Face Value by Phil Collins
UK Albums Chart number-one album
24 January 1981 – 6 February 1981
14 March 1981 – 22 May 1981
Succeeded by
Double Fantasy by John Lennon & Yoko Ono
Stars on 45 by Starsound

References[edit]

  1. ^ Palmer, Robert (25 November 1981). "The Pop Life; Latest British Invasion: 'The New Tribalism'". The New York Times. Retrieved 24 December 2014. 
  2. ^ a b "The Official UK Charts Company: All the Number 1 Albums". Official Charts. Archived from the original on 9 February 2008. Retrieved 24 December 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c d e "Adam & the Ants | Artist | Official Charts". Official Charts. Retrieved 24 December 2014. 
  4. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Adam and the Ants – Antmusic". Australian-charts.com. Retrieved 24 December 2014. 
  5. ^ a b Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "Kings of the Wild Frontier – Adam and the Ants | Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 24 December 2014. 
  6. ^ Christgau, Robert. "Robert Christgau: Album: Adam and the Ants: Kings of the Wild Frontier". robertchristgau.com. Retrieved 24 December 2014. 
  7. ^ DeCurtis, Anthony; Henke, James; George-Warren, Holly (1992). The Rolling Stone Album Guide (3rd ed.). Random House. p. 6. Retrieved 24 December 2014. 

External links[edit]