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Good without troubling the greats.
on 22 June 2006
Its the CD you have been waiting for, it's the CD we've all been waiting for, since every music fan up and down the country felt a sudden sense of devotion to the catchy punk riffs of the Libertines we've been waiting for them to continue their peak to greatness. Amidst burgularys, drug-fuelled riots, head bashing in Wales amongst others they never quite achieved it but we all wanted to know could Peter and Carl do it by themselves.
Immediately when you look at the strange cover you are already comparing it to the Libertines and Babyshambles, does it have the effect of Carl protecting Pete from the glare fo the camera like 'The Libertines' did so well, you know this doesn't matter and you promised yourself you wouldn't do this but you just can't help yourself.
Finally when you actually consider putting the CD into a player your ready to find out what the 'sensible libertine' could do. Immediately roaring through 'Deadwood' we hear the catchy tune we all loved so much earlier, we hear the chorus, its catchy. It's a song full of energy and exactly what you need for an opener. All in all a good start and Carl confesses 'I knew this place, it was never the place for me.'
Carl then immediately breaks his earlier promises of this to be an independant album free of pete and his past, it was his chance to show that he is an incredible songwriter in his own right and not just the sensible one who controlled petes genius and stopped it getting out of control. In 'doctors and dealers' we all know what hes talking about, but bizarrely he pulls it off with a riff to die for and lyrics that make a haunting point but the bitterness remains with his reinforcement of his earlier complaints 'I don't believe anything they tell me is set in stone, they said we'd be together but I'm sat here on my own.' it sings like a hate-mail to pete full of insults but after all thats happened, I suppose you an allow one comeback.
Next we come to Bang Bang you're dead, the single you have all heard. He protests this is a battle from within and he is complaining about his inner self, the 'bad Carl' as he put it, and in this context it's compelling. It's got a melody that you can't help yourself humming and its a defining tune. This links to further greats with Bloodthirsty Bastards and The Gentry Cove. Without doubt the 3 best songs on the album and linking together to produce 10 minutes of brilliance. Carl here shows he can handle it on his own as a songwriter and if this was a new band by some bloke called carlos i would be singing its praises, and I am to a certain extent, but when I know what he is capable of it does take the gleam off the songs, great as they are.
A number of average tracks follow, leading on to the truly awful 'You Fucking Love it.' The punk here turns into the sex pistols punk of thought that if you crank up the amps and start shouting the first words that come into your mind you can make a good song. Yes, the noise makes it a live hit but ulitimately its a poor song by anyones standards. Sinishing with 'B.U.R.M.A' there is a return to the catchy tunes of before and the words are almost bouncy. They're uplifting and enthusiastic and this personifies the second half of the album.
Ultimately, a decent album with alot of potential. It has catchy riffs and a good collection of about 7 good punk songs. This really should be enough but strangely, it's not. Good album, good songs occasionaly verging into greatness but it just can't remain there. It's much better produced than The Libertines or Down in Albion, but it's still sall over the place. If it is designed to entertain its succeeded, but it's not a great album.