Libertines Boys in the Band/What Became of the Likely Lads

Now that the Libertines are finally finished as a functioning unit, the band have readied two new releases: a reissue of last year’s self-titled sophomore album with the bonus Boys in the Band DVD and What Became of the Likely Lads, an EP of live tracks. While their second full-length found the band teetering on superstardom in Europe (with large thanks to tabloid coverage of Pete Doherty’s drug problems), the heart of this deluxe version is the accompanying DVD. Boys in the Band is a fine addition to the record, but as a DVD it’s far too sparse to stand on its own. Featuring a handful of live songs taken from gigs in Japan and Spain, it’s slim pickings until you reach the guerrilla gig footage of Pete and Carl Barât at Filthy McNasty’s, where they lead massive pub sing-alongs with hardcore fans. The best footage though is found in scenes from the tour van with the band drunkenly singing together as friends and the intimate and candid interviews with each band member, covering every absorbing facet of the Libertines. What Became of the Likely Lads, however, is far less rewarding. Simply a thrown-together EP of live tracks, it’s merely a seven-track vehicle to launch the title track as a single. There is a reworked version of the song, as well as another version of "Don’t Look Back Into the Sun,” but your money’s best spent on the new version of the full-length, which is possibly the last chance to fully experience the most stimulating British band in recent memory. (Rough Trade)