3/29/09: Pete Doherty @ Troxy, London (66/100)

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This show made me realize how good I’ve had it the last 65 days. The majority of the shows I’ve seen have been at venues within a 10-15 minute walk from my apartment. This show, not so close. We’re talking: Queen’s Park stop on the Bakerloo, change at Oxford Circus to the Central, change at Bank to the DLR, get out at Limehouse, walk about 5 blocks to the club. About an hour trip. Not nearly as bad as it sounds, but keep in mind, it was a Sunday night.

We got to the newly renovated Troxy, located in a rough-around-the-edges East End neighborhood, around 9:15pm. From the beginning, Sunshine didn’t seem to jazzed about going to this show. She’s not a huge fan of Pete Doherty. Neither are any of her friends as it turns out. I think the mere idea of him disgusts a lot of Britons.

But not me. I used to love The Libertines and never got a chance to see them. I know this won’t be the same thing, and I don’t know how much I even love his solo record, but it’s still Pete Doherty in London. Plus, there are just so few rock stars left anymore. Think about it: Jimmy Hendrix, Jim Morrison, Sid Vicious, Kurt Cobain (reluctantly), Layne Staley, Keith Richards (somehow still alive). The list could go on, but only looking back. Everyone is so safe and indie and precious these days. No one’s hanging off a bridge by a finger nail anymore. Includes Doherty, at least not for the time being. We’ll see how long that lasts. Especially when the stigma is kept alive by selling these FUCK FOREVER t-shirts at the show for example.

Things kicked off tonight withjust Pete and an acoustic guitar. The crowd hung onto and sung along with every word. After a few songs, a band filled out the stage. I didn’t pay too close attention during the Babyshambles era, I am more of a Libertines guy. So I didn’t know too many songs, to be honest. But it didn’t matter. They sounded great, and the crowd was loving it.

Security was really tight, as you can imagine it would be at a show of a “former” heroine abuser/crackhead. The funniest moment was probably watching two young girls run under a roped off area towards a stairwell, only to have security dart after them a minute later. “Maybe they were trying to find somewhere to shoot up,” I said . Then the girls got hustled back into the venue by security, and Sunshine said, “With that kind of outfit, they were trying to get backstage.” It was a 14+ show. There are too many things wrong with that.

Pete was joined on stage not only by his touring band members (including former Babyshambles members), but also a small string section and keyboard players – all dressed in matching black suits with white shirts and skinny black ties. “They all look like Mark Ronson,” Sunshine thought.

Later on in the show, a guy named Stevie, dressed in full Native American attire complete with feathered headdress, came on stage and Pete sang him “Happy Birthday.” Eeven later Lee Mavers of The La’s came out and played one song, “Son of a Gun,” with Pete and the band. That was great, but I kinda wished that one song would’ve been “Timeless Melody.” Oh well.

The show was surprisingly good (even turning Sunshine into a believer), and the crowd was tamer than one might expect, save for those who throw full cups of beer or water into the air randomly. I noticed this at the Lily Allen show as well, must be a UK thing. When the show was nearing an end, Sunshine and I got a jump on the crowd and scooted toward to the door. Once Pete finished, we made a mad dash for the DLR, preparing for another hour long ride back to Queen’s Park.

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2 Responses to “3/29/09: Pete Doherty @ Troxy, London (66/100)”

  1. That shirt reminds me of the Jarvis Cocker t-shirt I bought that says: Cunts are still ruling the world

    Still haven’t figured out how to where that out of the house.

  2. amazing. i really wish i would’ve bought the t-shirt, but too fucking expensive (20 pounds)

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