Back From The Dead

When I first set eyes on Pete Doherty, he was huddled with his band of Libertines in a small room in the basement of the now-defunct Luxx in Williamsburg. He was a slight, pale young man, who looked more like a young priest from a seminary than a leader of the devil-may-care rascals before him. He briefly looked out at me with the vague, dim gaze of a drunken man. Minutes later he played one of the most memorable sets it has ever been my honour to witness. Pete's own handwritten setlist from that show, now framed and hung in the hallway outside my room, is an ever present reminder of that glorious evening. But it was Pete's innocent, ghostlike stare that I recalled recently upon reading in the broadsheets of his recent troubles with the Crown.

While I am not unacquainted with the seductive lure of the pipe, and have witnessed the command it holds over those that are close to me, I believe that Pete's recent difficulties stem from a different problem. You must remember, my friends, that Pete's soul is that of a poet, and thus that his primary struggle shall always be with the English language. What greater challenge could there possibly be for such a man, then, than deciding whether the name of your new band should be one word or two? It is this enigma, I believe, that has consumed Pete for these past months, and has led to the cancellation of so many shows. Is it to be Babyshambles or Baby Shambles? I, for one, put my faith in Pete, and thus shall continue eagerly to await the answer.

Meanwhile, according to the band's website (
www.babyshambles.net), the recording of their debut album is "going well, with 12 songs tracked and 5 new ones being arranged this weekend." So far, the band has recorded:

Gang of Gin
Black Boy Lane
Loyalty Song
A Rebours
Do You Know Me
32nd Of December
My Darling Clementine
Fuck Forever
In Love With A Feeling
8 Dead Boys
Sticks and Stones
"and a new one featuring guest vocals"

The band is also set to record Pipe Down, What Katie Did Next, Alibi, Wolfman, in addition to new versions of Babyshambles, The Man Who Came To Stay and possibly Killamangiro. Six other new songs have been written which may also be recorded in the coming weeks.

To tide us over until the final album is released, Pete has posted mp3's on the website of 16 tracks from his "Shaking and Withdrawn" sessions, including new versions of Can't Stand Me Now and Ha Ha Wall.


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