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Dirty Pretty Things

09:27 14 December 2006

UEA LCR, Norwich

UEA LCR, Norwich

To the casual observer The Libertines may simply have seemed a vehicle for Pete Doherty - but for thousands of fans Carl Barat serves as a reminder of the band they could and should have been.

He may not gain as many column inches as his erstwhile song-writing partner but that is something for which he is no doubt thankful. His new project Dirty Pretty Things is beginning to build a musical legacy all of its own.

While a performance by Doherty's Babyshambles is anticipated with a morbid fascination, those following Dirty Pretty Things do so for the songs alone.

The band possesses all the energy and troubadour tendencies as its predecessor but combines that with a cohesion brought about by their determination to become more than a momentary blip in musical history.

It is impossible to ignore debut single Bang Bang You're Dead - a song penned in the aftermath of The Libertines' collapse. It is fuelled by anger disguised by a sing-along melody that brought the crowd to a frenetic peak.

This track is not alone in its cathartic ranting but it does not sum up the whole experience. Gin and Milk and Last of the Small Time Drinkers see a return to Barat's story-telling roots.

Doherty may grab the headlines for now but Barat can stand the test of time.

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