It’s always nice to get into a band or musician you missed the first time around. When the Libertines appeared, I listened to their debut album but it just seemed like disorganized noise. Last night, I was reading an article about their reunion and listened to a couple of their tunes in Spotify and found it to be good – My original dislike might have been caused by crappy downloaded music copy or crappy headphones I had at the time. What sounded like noise to me before now sounds like cleverly controlled chaos also their drummer is amazing. Some good tunes – Death on the Stairs, What a Waster, The Ha Ha Wall, Whatever Became of the Likely Lads?
The Libertines really combine a lot of great influences – The Clash’s two guitar contrast (Pete Doherty’s roughly strummed rhythm guitar against Carl Barat’s smoother lead lines), The Buzzcock’s combination of the catchy and the fast, and the out of order verse-chorus structure of The Smiths not to mention the lyricism of Morrissey and also Jarvis Cocker of Pulp who both Doherty and Barat sound like at times.
They are a “link” band appearing between the end of the 90’s Britpop scene and the rise of the Arctic Monkeys who sound like a tighter, cleaner, more innocent version of The Libertines much like The Stone Roses were a link between 80’s British New Wave and the start of 90’s Britpop
Expanding on my new found love of The Libertines, I listened to some of the post-Libertines music of Carl Barat and Pete Doherty – A few select tracks of Dirty Pretty Things and Babyshambles as well as their solo albums. What I find was a crystallization of their individual strengths and weaknesses which are the opposite of one another. For Barat – I liked some of Dirty Pretty Things music, the guitar, the speedy momentum but overall a bit too clean in places. For Doherty – It’s clear he has a lot to say, a lot of passion but the music was I heard was far too sloppy, sounds like he made it up on the spot. I am really looking forward to The Libertines long awaited third album which is supposed to be out later this year because it’s clear they work best together. They cancel out each other’s weaknesses and reinforce each other’s strengths. Very Lennon/McCartney in that regard.