The Midas Touch
If Dirty Pretty Thingsâ€šÃ„Ã´ debut Waterloo to Anywhere had a subtitle it would read, â€šÃ„ÃºLong Live the Lust of the Libertines.â€šÃ„Ã¹ The album itself is essentially Up the Bracket Part Two, but it would be unfair to say that it is just a last attempt at keeping the legacy of The Libertines alive; sans Pete Doherty and including a whole new line-up, there is almost an aura of stability to the music. At times gritty and seemingly thrown together, Waterloo to Anywhere remains true to the ethos of Londonâ€šÃ„Ã´s punk rock underground and proves that Carl Barat has the spirit and the ability to lead a creative force without his troubled counterpart Doherty. The album is fast and angry but masks the animosity towards Doherty felt in the lyrics with infectious hooks and enough bass to keep everyone dancing without being grouped with the dance-punk styling of Franz Ferdinand or Bloc Party.
â€šÃ„ÃºBang Bang Youâ€šÃ„Ã´re Deadâ€šÃ„Ã¹ and â€šÃ„ÃºThe Enemyâ€šÃ„Ã¹ are the two catchiest singles with prominent bass, clever lyrics (â€šÃ„ÃºSelf-satisfaction for the factions/Who formed to tear us apart/Well I gave you the Midas touch/Oh you turned round and scratched out my heartâ€šÃ„Ã¹) and random trumpets thrown in for good measure. â€šÃ„ÃºGin and Milkâ€šÃ„Ã¹ and â€šÃ„ÃºYou Fucking Love Itâ€šÃ„Ã¹ are the rawest tracks that scream rock star with their party anthem undertones.
Waterloo to Anywhere is a strong showing from a band living under an enormous amount of hype and pressure. While no mention of Carl Barat could be completely devoid of the ghosts of The Libertines, the album proves Dirty Pretty Things have the energy and creative drive to contribute great music to the punk scene independent of their past.