The Libertines Albums

 

            The Libertines are a band who make fast pop music in the vein of 1970’s and 1990’s lighthearted punk , with a lot of attitude. Formed in the early 00’s, the band consists of two leaders, Carl Barat and Pete Doherty. Doherty is the troublemaker; he has been in and out of jail and caused more headlines of trouble than some of the most reckless rock stars in the band’s first three years of existence. The band is good though, because they have carved out their own niche in punk music, and though their influences are as obvious as 1-2-3, the music is often unpredictable, and can lead to great albums such as their debut. Whether or not they will continue making great albums, we shall see, their story is looking up since addition of new guitarist Rossomando to replace Doherty, who is maybe too unpredictable for his own good, but perhaps he was necessary to the band’s sound.

 

 

 

Band Members:       

    Carl Barat – Guitar, Vocals

                                    Pete Doherty – Guitar, Vocals (2002 – 2003,

2015 to current)

                 John Hassal – Bass

                    Gary Powell – Drums

                                    Anthony Rossomando – Guitar, Vocals (2004 tour)

 

Best Album:

Up the Bracket

Biggest Influences:

Supergrass, The Clash, The Buzzcocks, The Undertones, Green Day, The Vaselines

 

 

 

2002

Up the Bracket (4.5 / 5)

Every once in a while, a band comes along and makes one of those great debut albums that throw everyone in the music world for a loop. The Clash, The Undertones, and Is This It, are all examples of amazing pop punk debuts. This album is a great debut, one that get across its point while also showing plenty of humor and passion along the way. For example, the cover is obviously a comparison to The Clash, and Mick Jones produced this record for goodness sakes! This matters less if the songs are up to snuff, and luckily there are plenty of great songs here. Opening track “Vertigo”, “Death on the Stairs”, the vehement rocker “I Get Along”, and “Up the Bracket” are all great, energetic songs that mix The Strokes with The Clash in a very sloppy way. “Tell the King” is more of a ballad that churns along with a nice lead guitar lick, painting a moving picture. “Time for heroes” especially is great, mixing a gorgeous melody with fury.

The humorous ‘Get Along’, “Horrorshow” and “The Good Old Days”, are good tunes that get by mainly on energy; “The Boy Looked at Johnny” is probably the best song in this vein. There are few follies, maybe “Radio America” and “Begging” being the weakest songs, but even those two are not that bad. What this album turns out to be is a throwback to many different styles in punk and lo-fi rock, that does not create any of its own (What a Waster “ serves as nice bonus track/ b-side at the end of the CD). Despite what the band acts like in their personal lives, which seems to be the topic of most reviews on this album, Up the Bracket is a great, fun album that is great to party to, and will stand up among its contemporaries for years to come. It may not be The Clash ‘77 as much as it wants to be, but it’s as good as any album their other main influence, Supergrass, has done. It’s a blast, and there should be more albums carefree as this.

Greatest Songs: Tell the King, Time for Heroes, Up the Bracket, I Get Along

 

 

 

2004

The Libertines (2.5 / 5)

The continuation of the band is a question with their second record, as singer Doherty was not present for most of the session due to a bad drug addiction. Messy in style like the first, but instead of throwing back and mimicking older bands, they are imitating themselves. That is not good and makes the band sound like it is out of ideas. There aren’t many great songs here, and almost half of the record is not even worth one’s time. But oh well, the songs it gives us prove that the band is still capable of rocking with “Last Post on the Bugle”, being sarcastic with “Can’t Stand Me Now”, and creating ballads with “Music When the Lights go Out”. The rest of the songs are pretty standard, and not really worth talking about. It should be noted that “The Man Who Would be King” is a throwback to their own “Tell the King”, and “Campaign of Hate” and “Road to Ruin” channel 1970’s Television through a new filter, but both of those latter songs kinda fail. Maybe they will get it right next time, or there may not even be a next time. We shall see.

 

Greatest Songs: Last Post on the Bugle, Music When the Lights Go Out, Can’t Stand Me Now

 

 

 

 

2015

Anthems for Doomed Youth (1.5 / 5)

 

            After his stint in rehab, co-leader Peter Doherty is back with he band and after over ten years they have created a new album. Right off the bat, the atmosphere is a lot more “chilled” then what has previously come before. Nothing really stands out, as the band seems low on energy. Seems the thrill of the debut is gone for the time being…..