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4.6 out of 5 stars
111
4.6 out of 5 stars
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Despite having released only two albums, during from the small space of 2002-2004, The Libertines will always be one of my favourite indie bands. I know that more famous artists have since appeared (most of which though do owe some credit to The Libertines as many were influenced by them), but when singing guitarists Carl Barât and Pete Doherty recorded these albums, it was the start of a revival for the British rock scene, so it all began here.

Their exciting debut 'Up the Bracket' is the strongest of the two in my opinion, and contains the hit 'Time For Heroes' and the standout title track, immediately catchy, and what a intro! Both of these songs are decidedly my favourites.

Having said that, the whole release flows very well. It's an excellent collection of punk rock songs, packed with raw energy and witty, intelligent lyrics. It only peaked at no.35 in the UK charts, but was very well received.

Unfortunately the band's personal problems are also well-documented, which must explain why they split in 2004. Nevertheless, they produced some of the most consistently great music at the time, and 'Up the Bracket' remains one of the best albums from that period.

Check out the 2003 re-release which contains an extra track and a bonus DVD featuring the promotional music videos of 'Up the Bracket', 'Time for Heroes' and 'I Get Along'.
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on 7 April 2017
Excellent condition
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on 22 February 2004
This band has had everything in 2003, from their lead singer being banged behind bars, with an emotional comeback, to producing some of the best truly British rock/punk music for years.
The best songs for me are Death on the Stairs, Boys in the Band, Up the Bracket and What a Waster, but there isn't a single bad song on the album. Don't ask me to pick out a single song to go as my favourite, because it's impossible. They are all too good.
It's a rarity that any band will produce an album in which you can agree with every single song, but this is certainly something you can listen to all the way through without being disappointed, other than the fact that the album ends somewhat quicker than anyone would ever wish.
Pete and Carl have to be one of the great frontmen pairings of the current indie/rock/punk scene. Their guitar and singing techniques are like none other from any of the current selection of bands, only Eastern Lane come anywhere close but they still lack in many areas.
Overall, it is simply impossible to sell this album to any budding buyers properly without saying just have a listen, you need to hear it to believe it basically.
Oh, and the intro to "Up The Bracket" is the best intro to any song ever in my view!!
The Libertines rule, forever...
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on 29 October 2003
This is a very good album that proves that erudite rock and roll is still alive. Anyone who likes banal, commercial clap-trap like Linkin Park, Limp Biskit should avoid this album like the plague. You would not understand its beauty,its lyrical charm.
Half the album is instantly catchy, for example, the singalong swagger of Boys in The Band and the rugged punk of I Get Along. Other tracks like Radio America and Vertigo sound, when first listened to, like they were written 5 minutes before they were recorded. They are not instantly catchy, Radio America sounds like it's going to fall apart at any moment. But it is the spontaneity of the music that makes the album a masterpiece.
It is evident from the album that the Libertines play music for enjoyment, not for money or a transient dose of fame, their raw sound being very unlike much of the over produced, sickeningly sweet music that captivates most of the British Youth today. The lyrics are paeans to a lost age, to the England of Oscar Wilde and Thomas Hardy. The Libertines tell it like it is!
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VINE VOICEon 18 December 2007
The Libertines were really, really good. This, the first of their two albums, is loud, raucous and brilliant. Like so many truly great bands, the Libertines were based on two songwriters whose abilities complimented each other, both by tempering and encouraging the right tendencies in each other, and by providing a large number of quality songs in order to create here a solidly excellent album.

For me, the highlights are title track Up The Bracket, Time For Heroes (as anthemic as they get, and packed full of fantastic lyrics - 'no more depressing sight than that of an English man in a baseball cap'), and closer I Get Along, which bangs and bounces the album to it's we'll-do-whatever-the-hell-we-want climax.

For me, this became the third really important and truly great album released since the start of the 90s (following key offerings from Radiohead and Oasis). For some reason, it wasn't met with the same commercial success, which is strange, as the songs here are of the highest order. Full of power and attitude, but with a sly intelligence and the class of lyrics that most bands can only dream of.

I can't recommend this album enough.
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on 21 November 2003
As a hardened music fan with over 25 years listening to, nay devouring music, I'd recently found myself becoming cynical to what was being pushed at me, rarely finding anything to set my pulse racing and near enough never finding anything to excite me to the levels that existed in my younger years. That was until Up The Bracket landed on my mat courtesy of Amazon. I put it on the CD player and 2 weeks later it hasn't been removed, despite having a number of other albums bought around the same time (including The Strokes, Travis and Starsailor's latest) demanding my attention.
I can honestly say I haven't been as in love with an album like this since The Stone Rose's released their debut. Outstanding in every way it grows better and better with every listen (and there's been quite a few of those so far). It's impossible to nominate outstanding tracks as they are are all outstanding and my favourite changes daily.
The Libertines combine the current New York cool of The Strokes with the old UK punk cool of the Clash, whilst chucking in a smattering of The Jam and The Buzzcocks and an understanding of English Folk (yes FOLK). The lyrics are oh so British which just adds to the appeal; intelligent, witty and so to the point. Instant identification. Things just don't get much better!
I hope the band get over their much publicised problems and record again because if they don't it will be a criminal waste of talent. And for all you undecided out there, if you like the current New York scene or have a soft spot for the punk/new wave scene of the late70's/early80's, or if you just like intelligently written pop/rock, do yourselves a favour and buy this album. I promise you, you won't be disappointed.
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on 10 March 2009
This is simply one of the best debut albums of the last decade. Following The Strokes in America The Libertines helped to make guitars cool again this side of the Atlantic for the first time since the demise of Britpop.

Since this amazing album much of Pete Doherty's actual music has been obscured by tabloid tales of crack abuse and his relationship with supermodel Kate Moss. So it is important to remember this is the reason that anybody cared in the first place, establishing Doherty as one of the most talented songwriters of his generation. It is the chemistry between the two frontmen however that really made The Libertines so special to their fans. The relationship between Doherty and singer/guitarist Carl Barat which teeters between love and hate, respect and jealousy is what gives the album its energy. As has been well documented this competitiveness coupled with Doherty's excesses would later tear the band apart but here it works perfectly.

'Time for Heroes' is a brilliant tune with poetic lyrics by Doherty while 'Up The Bracket' is another belter. Carl tends to rock a little harder opening the album with 'Vertigo' and finishing it with the fantastic 'I Get Along'. Their sound recalls British punk bands like The Jam and The Buzzcocks while at the same time combining the lyricism of The Smiths.

While the second Libertines album has its charms this is the album i would recommend to anyone thinking of giving the band a listen. While Pete and Carl may not have matched the magic of this debut with their individual projects they succeeded in giving British rock its confidence back and in the process inspiring a new wave of British bands. To any modern music fan i would urge them not to judge Doherty by what they read in the paper but to go and check out this great album first, then make up your minds.
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on 17 June 2005
Rarely does a masterpiece of British music come along such as this. This has to be one of the greatest debut albums of all time, with so much energy, setting new standards for the rest of the music scene to live up to. Not since Definately Maybe, Ok Computer and Urban Hymns has the British music scene been indulged with so much talent. A brilliant predecessor for the self named The Libertines Album, which has a lot to live up to. Pete Doherty and Carl Barat's genius will blow your mind!
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on 7 August 2004
This did not take me a few listens to get in to, i instantly loved this album and it somehow manages to still get better with every listen. It's frantic, chaotic and exciting. It's full of character and charisma, and is strong from start to finish. Time For Heros is fantastic and possibly the best song lyrically on the album. Boys in the Band is great too, with a really catchy chorus about certain perks of being in a band 'and they all get them out (all get them out), For the boys in the band'. Radio America and Tell The King are the 2 slower songs on the album, and are actually quite beautiful. The last few lines of Tell The King are hushed quietly over an even more quiet guitar and it really has a beautiful spine-tingling effect on me. The Good Old Days has lyrics that i'm sure all big music lovers could relate to 'if you've lost your faith in love or music then the end won't be long'. The Boy Looked At Johnny is a personal favourite of mine, it's unusual and great fun. I Get Along is the perfect way to end such an amazing album, another trademark hectic Libs song. Pete Doherty has a fantastic voice that i just love, a great mixture of being able to sing and shout. All 4 members are very talented muscians, Carls guitar playing is especially outstanding. It's not about technical ability, The Libs have thier own style and Pete and Carl are excellent songwriters. This really is one of the best albums i own and the best album of the 21st century.
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on 24 October 2003
This is an essential album.
There are a few tracks which are instantly great, time for heroes being the stand out classic, but some songs are slow burners such as tell the king and begging.
There has been much hype about the libertines, most notably them being called the british strokes, this is far form the case. The badn in themselves sound completely different to the strokes. What you get is a celebration of British life, Most Uk listeners will be able to completely relate to hte lyrics. for example "there are few more distressing sites than that of an englis man in a baseball cap" form time for heroes, displaying the woes of the people you see on street corners with one earing and a kappa tracksuit.
The band have undergone tough times lately with singer/guitarist being incarcirated for a month. But they are back on top now with a second album pending
my advice is this: download "time for heroes" if you like what you hear (you almost certainally will) then you must buy this album. it has such a range of different musical styles, form the beutifull tell the king to the catchy and upbeat "up the bracket"
put simply, if you're from the UK you will see exactly where this album is coming from and it will not leave your CD player for months
a modern classic
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