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Last Updated: Friday, 5 May 2006, 07:18 GMT 08:18 UK
Ex-Libertines go on without Pete
By Chris Leggett
BBC News entertainment reporter

Dirty Pretty Things (from left) Gary Powell, Carl Barat, Anthony Rossomando and Didz Hammond
Dirty Pretty Things were formed in September 2005

Every tabloid reader knows what became of The Libertines' singer Pete Doherty after the band split.

Just as the guitar four-piece were becoming one of the UK's most popular groups in 2004, the band dissolved amid reports of drug-taking and in-fighting.

Doherty formed Babyshambles and has had regular arrests for drug offences, spells in rehab and an on-off, front-page romance with model Kate Moss.

Now two of his former bandmates, fellow guitarist and songwriting partner Carl Barat and drummer Gary Powell, are back with new band Dirty Pretty Things.

Joining them in the new line-up is guitarist Anthony Rossomando - who filled in for Doherty during the last Libertines tours - and bassist Didz Hammond, formerly of indie band Cooper Temple Clause.

Following their debut hit single Bang Bang You're Dead, they are releasing their first album, Waterloo to Anywhere.

Media coverage

Barat kept a low profile following the Libertines' split, but has recently spoken out about the trauma of trying to keep up with Doherty and his "demons".

Carl Barat
Barat and Doherty had shared loves including poetry and The Jam

But Rossomando is diplomatic about Dirty Pretty Thing's arrival being overshadowed by Doherty's latest brushes with the law.

He says: "It doesn't really affect our camp. Obviously we hear what is going on. It's hard not to."

Hammond says: "It doesn't have much to do with us, but it is linked in people's minds."

"I haven't seen Pete for three or four years. Obviously Carl and Gary have seen him more recently.

"It has as much effect on us as it does anyone sitting down to their cornflakes and reading it in their tabloid."

Recovery hopes

"Some of us have had similar problems but not that deep. Hopefully, he can sort it out and make music that is supported by a lot of people," says Rossomondo.

Pete Doherty
Doherty released the first Babyshambles album last year

"There is still that side to his art that hopefully can continue."

Dirty Pretty Things were officially formed last September.

"Carl wanted to be in a band with people who were on the same page as him and the same ideas," says Hammond, who has known Barat and Powell for five years.

"The last Libertines record was quite a breakthrough lyrically, really, as the whole record is an argument between them (Doherty and Barat). They made the best of their surroundings and came up with something incredibly inventive.

"But Carl wanted (Dirty Pretty Things) to be a bit more like their first record, where it was all positive and everyone headed in the same direction rather than tearing each other apart."

Celebrity parking

The band are surprised by the speed with which they got to their first album release: "I think we must be the quickest-formed proper band ever," says Hammond.

Dirty Pretty Things
Dirty Pretty Things will play the Reading and Leeds Festivals

"Part of the reason it happened so quickly, is it's natural. It came together out of friendship.

"We came out of our first rehearsal and felt and looked like a band."

During recording, the band flew out to a Los Angeles studio to work with producer Dave Sardy, who made Oasis's album Don't Believe the Truth.

After years of touring Europe's indie circuit, the new recruits felt they had made the big time.

Hammond recalls: "We recorded in one studio which had a parking space reserved for Meatloaf.

"Sardy said he wanted his own parking space, so we went back the next day and they had given him his own space and taken Meatloaf's down."

Despite a busy tour schedule, the band are keen to get new material together and build on their debut.

Rossomando says: "When we hit the quiet of the storm this summer, I think we'll get together to go through some ideas."


SEE ALSO:
Doherty bailed after drugs arrest
21 Apr 06 |  Entertainment
Saluting the Libertines' legend
03 Mar 06 |  London
The Libertines top albums chart
05 Sep 04 |  Entertainment


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