On their second full-length CD, Babyshambles have tightened up considerably in comparison to 2005’s Down in Albion. This may partially be due to new guitarist Mick Whitnall, whose style seems to mesh well with longtime band members in exploring and renewing the energy of past Brit-rock acts like The Who, The Small Faces, and The Stone Roses. Pete Doherty-though still solipsistic and troubled-also seems to have made progress with his lyrics and singing. Having Stephen Street produce the disc was a stroke of luck, and he seems to be succeeding for Babyshambles as he once did for the Smiths. The tunes are intriguing; “French Dog Blues” features some fine Motown-style bass lines, while “The Lost Art of Murder” is a minor masterpiece on which folk legend Bert Jansch guests on guitar. Now if Pete could just beat the smack.
Thursday, October 11, 2007
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