The Libertines @ SSE Hydro
What Became of the Likely Lads? Well Apparently they Became Modern Men of the Music Industry.
The Libertines, finished you say? No need for them in our modern clean cut industry? Living on borrowed time? Sorry can you speak up? Can’t quite make you out for the near capacity SSE Hydro crowd going absolutely mental.
Being led out on stage by a kilted piper who erupts into a haunting version of “Flower of Scotland” might be borderline cliche but there’s no doubting it works, the Boys in The Band march out to rapturous applause and launch into Barbarians, one of the highlights of comeback album “Anthems For Doomed Youth”.
People always doubt the popularity and question the morality of the Libertines, “always making headlines for the wrong reasons”, “bad influences on the youth of today”, ” icons of a culture gone wrong” the cries are heard. But there’s no doubting The Libertines embrace it, with songs hinting at past “misdemeanours”, a chequered history and all that Albion stuff. Many of their songs seem far more fitting than they ever did before.
A worshipping crowd reliving their youth in front of their newly reformed idols, all seems very befitting of Libertines 2.0. No longer the outsiders looking in, they have become more than icons of a rebellious youth, Can’t Stand Me Now, Don’t Look Back Into The Sun, Music When The Lights Go Out etc can be considered genuine British classics (and eternal karaoke favourites), and by the looks of it, the accolade seems to fit almost as comfortably as the Red Military Tunics they so famously parachuted back into contemporary culture.
Something undoubtable with The Libertines is their electric camaraderie on stage, when Pete and Carl (famously) share the mic, it almost seems uncomfortably intense, like a voyeur, catching a glimpse of the duo in their early days in some forgotten Camden flat. The Glasgow crowd ate up every moment on Thursday, with many of the most loyal fans, still rubbing their eyes in disbelief, amazed the heroes of their youth were playing together, harmoniously on stage.
There were always rumours, starts, stops and restarts when it came to the iconic band reforming. Pete Doherty’s well documented “issues” with illicit substances being a major stumbling block. Barat having carved out a well respected spot in the industry could have been forgiven for questioning if he truly wanted to wade back into troubled waters with Pete. Rumours became interviews, interviews became clips of songs, songs became albums and albums became a successful tour.
Believe it or not the music industry needs characters like Carl Barat and Pete Doherty, where else would the headlines come from? The Libertines don’t fit the industry mould, in fact they’re constantly breaking it with their misbehaviour, but there’s no doubting the talent, and the hero worship? Without the front page news, The Libertines are still able to write a ditty or two.
With new songs Gunga Din, Fame and Fortune and Anthem For Doomed Youth being as warmly accepted as many of their older classics, it’s proved to any doubters, expecting the band to simply be cashing in on a feeling of nostalgia, that they’ve reformed for more than just the money.
Perhaps the band are no longer weighed down by the world’s expectations, instead the crowds are just happy to see their idols in the flesh once more.
“To The Men Who Would be King, We Will Say Only One Thing”…Glad to have you back. We’ve Missed You.