Wednesday 15 March 2017

On Stage: Pete Doherty @ Melkweg

Whenever Pete Doherty is playing a gig, whether as solo artist or with one his bands, you have to ask yourself if and when he will show up and in what kind of state. With The Libertines about a year ago he was in pretty good shape and I really enjoyed that show. Tonight one of my close friends got me a spot on the guest list so that reduced the risk of paying money for watching a drunk Doherty on stage.

Peter Doherty at Melkweg Amsterdam, March 13 2017

I guess most people in here tonight know that chances are considerable they will see a poor performance. That question is answered immediately when Doherty stumbles on stage an hour late and starts plucking his guitar: this guy is wasted. He mumbles something about not having smoked anything but it is pretty clear he didn't spend the day drinking apple juice and eating fruit salads. He's drifting about the stage, starting songs that leave his band wondering what he's doing. Sometimes bands can absolutely save a performance when their front men or women have lost it. The Pogues were used to that and were able to play decent shows with Shane MacGowan being out of this world.

But this band tonight look like they met Doherty this afternoon in some local drinking hole and have no intentions of playing a decent show. Sometimes they look as if they really want to be at home watching the latest episode of their favourite Netflix series. The violin is completely out of balance in the mix, mostly being too loud, but even worse, mostly out of tune. This whole show is out of tune. Sometimes Doherty is able to knock out something of a song with a head and a tail, pleasing his most loyal, and mostly British fans. When his show ends we decide not to stay for the encore, but go home and forget about this waste of time. The day after I found out the encore was the best part of the show but I'm so glad I didn't pay any money to see a shit faced Doherty wasting his talent.

All Pictures

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