The Libertines are a now-legendary rock group that’s had spots of controversy and notoriety during their nearly 20-year history. Whether you’re a fan of their particular brand of garage rock, neo-punk, indie-style sonic blasts, you’ve likely heard loads about frontman Pete Doherty and his inability to play two straight songs without getting zonked out on coke or liquor. But perhaps or because of Doherty’s unique brand of charisma and loathsomeness, the band endures despite breakups and enough infighting to make the Stones jealous. Here’s a rundown of the group’s major eras, as they get set to release their much-longed-for third record, ‘Anthems For Doomed Youth.’

 

Early Years

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Grunge and post-punk were still in their ascension when the Libertines formed in 1997. The brainchildren were Doherty and his mate Carl Barat, who roomed together with Doherty’s sister in a rundown flat. Playing small clubs, the group didn’t take off until 2001 when they were signed to Rough Trade records, and finally hit the charts in 2002 with their first single, “What a Waster,” reached 37th on the singles charts. Now with a firm grip on what the future could look like, the Libertines huddled to record their first album ‘Up the Bracket,’ during which time Doherty began showing signs of being a right drug fiend. By the time they began prepping for a European tour, Barat forced Doherty out ‘cuz of his dodgy behavior.

In fact, Barat saw quickly that Doherty’s drug use and wanton ways were an impediment to success, and the two would go on to have many rows about Doherty’s wildness. Doherty was briefly replaced on the tour, and joined another band while his mates played some gigs.