>> Pete Doherty: Grace/Wastelands (2009)

Artist: Pete Doherty

Album: Grace/Wastelands

Members: Pete Doherty, Graham Coxon, Dot Allison, Drew McConnell

Genre: Rock

Label: Astralwerks

Tracks: 13

Type: LP

Release Date: March 24, 2009

Discs: 1

Rating: 4.50 (out of 4.00)

Grade: A+

I was there when The Libertines became an overnight success. There when Babyshambles got familiarity off of Doherty’s notorious reputation. So I feel well prepared when taking on Doherty’s solo album debut Grace/Wastelands which in short is fantastic.

If you love music, really love music, your going to enjoy this album. The vapors of a classic group like The Rolling Stones, the poetry of an individual like Bob Dylan, and the fearless experimentation and exploration of a band like The Coral is just a small sample of what Doherty has in the works for fans. Enjoyable acoustic guitar work from Graham Coxon (Blur) that blends in with string sections and middle eastern twangs that back Doherty’s character voice. Think Jack White, Joe Strummer, and of course the sweet yet broken disposition of a poets heart. Doherty’s lyrics represent a slight folk rock feel, story infused, but the surrounding players backing Doherty, some even including members of his own band Babyshambles as well as writing credit to Carl Barat his former Libertines partner, well if Doherty is about the folk rock these guys didn’t realize.

The albums first single, The Last of the English Roses is reminiscent of The Clash with a touch of The Stone Roses combining a Combat Rock feel with the Roses quirky flower child type hippy rock. Doherty as well swaggers through the number calling up the style of Joe Strummer and a bit of Robert Smith (The Cure) while throwing in a bit of himself. I know no artist likes to be compared to other artists, especially a poet, but maybe this is all just inspiration cropping up. In any regards Doherty makes it his own. Fans who have been privileged to get a first hand listen to the new album before its release date have, some in their snooty way, made a point to mention that some of the material on this album is actually nothing new as Doherty, who has been known for his sporadic appearances, has been performing some of these tunes live for years. For those who haven’t caught them live this is just as good a place to hear them, and probably in their finest form. An absolute gem that will probably make its mark in music and be heard years and years from now. Yup. Its that good. Enjoy. 


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