libertines cancel upcoming show because of "medical emergency"

It's like 2004 all over again.

by Matthew Whitehouse
11 September 2015, 2:04pm

It's the news piece no one wanted to write. The one where all the relationship rebuilding and reputation restoring gives way to the familiar sight of wheels falling off the Libertine machine. The good ship Albion springing a leak. The crushing inevitability of a band whose entire brilliant and frustrating output has relied on walking that carefully balanced tightrope between chaos and magic.

As the Electric Ballroom P.A. ran through The Foundations' Build Me Up Buttercup for the second time - the man at the sound desk clearly unprepared to give a DJ set that stretched more than two hours after the official stage time - the crowd sang along and its lyrics took on a whole new meaning:

Why do you build me up (build me up)
Buttercup, baby, just to let me down (let me down)
And mess me around

A group of lads from Cleethropes ceased to chant 'Mariners' anymore. Instead they just walked around, heads in their hands, pints slopping out of plastic pint glasses. Someone climbed on stage and chucked a mic stand out of frustration. Someone else bundled them off. Boos rang out. This was part of the fun. This was none of the fun.

"I thought we were past all this," said a perfectly mod-coiffed fella next to me at the urinal, shortly before a spokesperson announced that the show was cancelled due to a 'medical emergency'. "We went through it in 2004. It wasn't supposed to be like this."

So far the band's official twitter has announced that "Peter is safe" (although being "safe" is very different to "well"). With the new record out today you have to wonder: has the arcadian dream fallen through again? 


Photography via

the libertines
anthems for a doomed youth
what a waster