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Smoking is the hazy fug of a 1930s jazz club, the deadline mist of a 1970s newsroom and the chocolate-wood smell of my granddad’s lounge circa 1988

Palma Violets, Boston Arms, London

Crowd surfing continues with the band off-stage, a topless girl balances on a mate's shoulders and the bouncers look panicked. This year’s hotly tipped saviours of guitar rock take all this in their stride, at least until a chaotic finale, suggesting either they learn fast or this is typical of their gigs.

Pete Doherty told the NME he was

Pete Doherty plans spell in rehab

Libertines star Pete Doherty said he has “a long way to go” before he gets off drugs but is planning to enter rehab later this month. .

My Secret Life: Carl Barât, musician, 32

My parents were... two very different peas in a pod, I'm not sure quite how they ever ended up with each other. I love them dearly.

Video: Exclusive footage of Carl Barat

Ex-Libertines singer Carl Barat takes you behind the scenes.

Meltdown: Ready Steady Go! Royal Festival Hall, London

Ready Steady Go! may be the most fondly remembered 1960s pop TV show. It lasted barely three years, fading out, at the end of 1966, before it could outstay its welcome – like the sharp singles it helped to promote. Ray Davies and the producer Vicki Wickham's one-night-only revival for Meltdown can't resurrect the social club the studio became for the Beatles, Stones and Kinks, or the young dancing Mods who were almost trampled by careening cameras. The minimal set – a couple of period photo-decorated signs – is a letdown. But somehow, the spirit of pop at its most warmly creative catches light again.

The albums you can judge by their covers

As Lady Gaga reveals tacky artwork for her new CD, Simon Hardeman cringes at 10 other violations of taste and sense

Carl Barât, Koko, London

Carl Barât's talent has often been superseded by his fame. His combustible relationship with the ever-newsworthy Pete Doherty is well-documented, and rumours continue to swirl about a possible Libertines reunion. Yet in the midst of the headlines, Barât has formed one half of the last decade's most memorable songwriting partnerships and fronted two of its more popular indie bands. Now, standing centre stage at Koko, the limelight shines solely on him, but what's unclear is how happy he is to embrace it alone.

Diary: Kirsty makes a boob on tape

Cheery property expert-cum-TV homemaker Kirsty Allsopp was at Thursday's Hodder dinner at Café de Paris to promote the new paperback edition of Kirstie's Homemade Home. Deciding, however, that the subject of craft would yield few gags, she chose to recount a racy anecdote from her youth.

Carl Barat dances to venture capitalists' tune

Ex-Libertines frontman joins growing number of artists hoping to bypass record labels

Threepenny memoir: The Lives Of A Libertine, By Carl Barât

Perhaps this less infamous ex-Libertine's autobiography is not the one we would really wish to be reading, but it turns out that Carl Barât 's story is inextricably tied up with Pete Doherty's rise and fall.

Carl Barât - The other libertinous likely lad cleans up

Carl Barât has an album, an autobiography, and a baby on the way. Fiona Sturges hears how he has turned turmoil into triumph

Album: Carl Barât, Carl Barât (Arcady)

Regrets, self-disgust and wretchedness: God, I love myself

The Libertines, The Forum, London

When The Libertines announced that they were reforming for the Reading and Leeds festivals, it is fair to say that the news was not greeted with universal excitement. For all those who idolised the quartet (who split up in 2004 in rather acrimonious circumstances), there were also many who saw the group as being over-hyped and over-rated.

First Night: The Libertines, The Forum, Kentish Town, London

Doherty's old boys back in town

Libertines 'electric' for comeback gig

Carl Barat said the chemistry with his fellow Libertines frontman Pete Doherty is "pretty electric" as the band prepared to play their first full gig tonight since their bitter break-up in 2004.

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