Quick menu

The Libertines’ New Album - Updates from the Band

The Libertines toasting their new hotel in Margate. Screengrab via YouTube / The Libertines

The Libertines’ new album has got an update courtesy of Carl Barât. The band, which is fronted by Barât and Pete Doherty, are working on a follow-up to 2015’s Anthems For Doomed Youth. That album was their first for over a decade, since 2004’s self-titled The Libertines, and earlier in 2018 they announced this fourth LP.

The news came as part of a press release which also revealed the name of the hotel they’re opening in Margate, Kent which is called The Albion Rooms. It’s also functioning as a studio, and the new album is being recorded there.

Barat recently spoke with Northern Exposure and said the following regarding the new album, “I tend to lock myself away in my little bunker as I can be lazy, I can’t work under the pressure of thinking I need to write a fucking hit, I’ve got a lot of ideas for this album, ones which I need to chat about with the boys.”

Photographer Andy Willsher recalls, "As The Libertines came to an acrimonious split, Pete and Carl did separate interviews for the NME, Pete was living in a pretty squalid flat in Farringdon at the time – while I was photographing him he wrote 'Forever' on the wall, which added poignancy to the shot." © Andy Willsher

A few more details were revealed by the band’s drummer, Gary Powell, who spoke with Clash magazine back in July. When asked what the record might sound like, Powell noted, “The last thing in the world we would attempt to do would be to reinvent the wheel. We have our own identity, and we’ll stick to our own identity as much as we can do. It’s what made us who we are. But having said that, there is an opportunity for us to investigate, and to investigate new approaches to what we do.”

He then teased that a more electronic sound might be introduced in some tracks, “I’m quite heavily into making electronic music,” he said. “And while I’m not saying we’re necessarily going down the electronic music path, there are certainly elements of that that can be added to it. It would also be nice to start messing around with interesting tempos. Our last album was quite conventional in our approach to tempos and music. If you stripped the music back and took the lyrics off it literally could’ve been anybody playing it. It didn’t feel as special as the first ones.”

Photographer Lula Camus recalls, "The Libertines had just been signed. Luckily a spare B&W roll of film was lying around, I loaded the camera and shot asking Pete to keep on jumping." © Lula Camus

But Powell casts doubts on whether the album will be ready for this year, as initially planned, and more likely will come in 2019. Speaking about what will come first the hotel opening or the album release, he says the hotel. And while the studio, and the hotel bar, have been completed, there’s still quite a bit of work to do on the property, which has five storeys and 10 rooms. They plan to open it for New Year’s Eve.

Along with the hotel the band, or at least Pete Doherty, has been in the news for some other non-music related stuff too. Namely, Doherty making headlines for taking on a big breakfast challenge at the Dalby cafe in Margate. With photos doing the rounds of him looking, let’s say, a little hungover, in front of a silver serving tray’s work of mushroom, bacon, eggs and the rest. The photos even inspired a mural which cropped up in Southend-on-sea.

Pete eating his big breakfast. Image via Twitter / @ThanetExtra

Along with the hotel, the band seem to have taken Margate and the surrounding Thanet area into their hearts. Not only are they now the official shirt sponsors of non-league Margate F.C. but they’ll also be curating a day, called Sharabang, at the nearby Broadstairs festival Wheels and Fins in September. Not only will they headline the show, but are also bringing Echo & The Bunnymen, Chas & Dave, and Reverend & The Makers to play on the lineup too.

You can take a glimpse of the The Albion Rooms hotel in the video below. Check out more from The Libertines at their website here. And buy tickets for Sharabang here.

Rockarchive is delighted to be able to offer Libertines and Pete Doherty images as limited edition photographic prints which you can buy here.