Published On: Tue, Jul 26th, 2022

The Libertines – Indie Icons Wow Wembley Arena | Music | Entertainment

Playing the album in full, tracks like Time For Heroes display the lovable Likely lads at their best, the whimsy of the chorus ‘I cherish you my love’ from Pete Doherty possessing an irresistible charm that still delights their cult-like fanbase to this day. Playing at a breathless pace, this is followed by Boys in the Band, a raucous crowd pleaser that has the band in raptures. Wembley Arena feels wired with an electric energy flowing through the venue tonight.

Next track Radio America features a nod to The Beatles with the band covering a snippet of She Loves You. There is very little repartee in between songs tonight, with the iconic duo of Pete and Carl seemingly leaving that to main support and special guests The Cribs, the lead singer of whom cheekily joking during their set “We’ve never been to Wembley, apart from when our mother took us to see Gladiators in 1992″.

A band with more twists than a corkscrew in their time, the band’s survival is testament to the labour of love that is their art. This musicianship is eloquently put by Pete in his recent autobiography A Likely Lad: ‘When you throw yourself into music, you sometimes have to hold onto the first thing with any meaning, and that can be anger or sorrow, but its not like I’m promoting those things.

It’s almost as if the rest of the time, everything’s tickety – boo. You can really admit defeat’.

A brilliantly playful appearance of two pretend riot police officers brandishing batons is a hilarious highlight of the night, a knowing nod to their past mischief.

Music When the Lights Go Out has the crowd in a swooning sing a long, with the chorus ‘I no longer hear the music’ feeling ironic given the clear chemistry between the band – especially Pete Doherty and Carl Barat, whose bond is clearly unbreakable despite their past bust ups throughout a tumultuous twenty years.

The jangly What Katie Did is Pete at his poetic best, and the final two trademark tunes Can’t Stand Me Now and Don’t Look Back Into The Sun causing chaos in the crowd as they are joined on the latter by indie favourite Jamie T, who is met with adoration. Tonight The Likely Lads made us fall in love with them all over again.

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