Album Review

Sequel to the Prequel

Sequel to the Prequel

by Babyshambles


Parlophone Records
8.5 / 10
11th September 2013

Reviewed by Paul Larsen


Despite his undeniable talent as a songwriter, each new release from one of Pete Doherty’s collection of creative outlets is generally accompanied with a common question; just what state was the man in when he made it? Pleasingly, for their third long player, Doherty and Babyshambles appear to have nailed a satisfying balance between bedlam and control.

Although the record isn’t particularly experimental, there are some left-field moments here, including Doherty trading in his fedora for a set of fake dreads on the reggae styled ‘Dr. No’. But even with these little flashes of weird, this is an exceedingly comfortable listen from start to finish. In fact, the album should ideally be consumed from the depths of a well-worn leather arm chair, a single malt just within arms reach. Doherty’s familiar, frayed drawl washing gently over you amongst layers of buoyant guitars and pop harmonies.

Interestingly, the highlights of Sequel to the Prequel are the moments that set Babyshambles apart from Doherty’s solo work. The thoroughly enjoyable ‘Farmer’s Daughter’ and album closer, ‘Minefield’ both feature Doherty’s said vocals kicked up a notch into what could almost be called a full throated growl, while the band energetically eggs him on. These are genuinely gratifying moments that suggest our man could actually be enjoying himself, and more importantly, keen to make sure we are as well.






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