With trendsetting UK indie legends, The Libertines, preparing for their biggest UK tour to date, including headlining The O2 on 30 January, we take a look at the top 10 moments of the band’s engrossing twenty-year career.
Meeting Banny Poostchi and signing to Rough Trade Records
After keeping things very DIY in their early days, the band decided to push their career further, subsequently teaming up with band manager, Banny Poostchi. This soon led to a deal with legendary record label, Rough Trade, in 2000 – where The Libertines would go from unknowns to superstars. Their debut album, Up The Bracket, was released in October 2002 and is still considered one of the greatest and most influential records of the noughties.
Supporting Morrissey in 2002
Having signed a significant record deal with Rough Trade, the band set about playing as many shows as physically possible and landed themselves the prestigious support slot for Morrissey’s 2002 tour. Not bad work, gents.
The infamous Forum stage invasion
In December 2003, the band were well-and-truly riding the wave of success, created by Up The Bracket. After performing three sold-out gigs at London’s The Forum – which also involved a full stage invasion from the crowd – the shows were named in Q Magazine’s top 100 gigs of all time. The following year, they sold out a further three nights at London’s Brixton Academy.
THAT Thailand conversation
After struggling with addiction (and creating tensions between himself and the rest of the band), Pete Doherty sat down with Carl Barat on 7 June, 2004 and told him he was going to Thailand to clean up his act. That night, The Libertines performed a small set. Little did we know at the time, it would be the last show they’d play together for six years.
A new album emerges nonetheless
Despite Doherty’s hiatus from the band, The Libertines continued work on their second album. On 30 August that year, their self-titled record was released and went straight to Number One in the Album Chart. The album itself focussed heavily on the love-hate relationship between Doherty and Barat and was something of an autobiographical release.
Headlining Reading & Leeds Festival in 2010
In 2010, six years after the release of their self-titled record, it was announced that The Libertines would reunite to headline Reading and Leeds Festival in the summer. Their performance was then awarded the ‘Defining Festival Moment’ by NME.
The Hyde Park show of 2014
With Doherty’s addictions now under control, the band announced they would be playing London’s Hyde Park in the summer of 2014 – and that this was just the beginning of a bigger, and better future for The Libertines.
Signing to Virgin EMI Records
That same year, The Libertines also signed a major record deal with Virgin EMI records, and went on to announce their third album, Anthems For Doomed Youth. Fans took to the internet to express their excitement and appreciation for the band, with @LilGazzi, for instance, tweeting, ‘Gunga Din is an absolute pearler of a tune can't wait for the libertines new album... Bring on Leeds fest this year!’
Gunga Din is an absolute pearler of a tune 👌 can't wait for the libertines new album... Bring on Leeds fest this year! 🍺🍺🍺
Throughout their career, The Libertines became masters of massive festival gigs. 2015 was the year they well-and-truly made their return and in June, The Libertines became the surprise guests on the Pyramid stage at Glastonbury Festival. Just a nice, low key event, of course.
Announcing a headline show at The O2
To round off their comeback in style, The Libertines returned to headline Reading and Leeds Festival in August of this year. Their performance received critical acclaim from the industry and fans alike. Along with the release of Anthems For Doomed Youth, and the announcement of their forthcoming UK tour, it appears The Libertines are back for good. We can’t wait to dance and airdrum like mad when they rock the O2 arena stage in January.