Peter Doherty embraces growing up, fatherhood and the return of the Libertines

"What keeps us together is music, everything else is rubbish."
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Musician Peter Doherty was troubled. His fans knew it, and there wasn’t much use in denying it. But after stints in prison and rehab — as well as being a permanent fixture in the British tabloid press, mostly thanks to his on-off relationship with model Kate Moss — the 37-year-old is now clean.

 

Doherty’s The Libertines, who last released an album 11 years ago, have now made the music rather than their personal lives the main focus of the media, with the release of “Anthem for Doomed Youth.” Doherty, who also has a second solo album on the market, “Hamburg Demonstrations” (out Dec. 2nd from Eudaimonism Records) says he and fellow frontman Carl Barat are back to sharing the same mic. And asDoherty explained during the indie-rock band’s stop in Mexico, the bombastic duo are both in a good place.

 

You were as famous for your hedonistic lifestyles as your music. Now that you’re older — and in a calmer place — is the touring experience more sedate?

 

We are experiencing a range of feelings at each concert. It’s amazing to return to the stage and travel the world; we are enjoying it more now, perhaps without so many excesses as before.

 

You and Carl have been through a lot together over the years. Do you consider your relationship as strong as ever?

My partner in life is Carl Barat; that’s why we are still up on stage despite many conflicts that led us to drugs and alcohol. We were very close to destruction; now we are no longer that young and have changed. I’ve been through a lot and I am full of weaknesses. But I like to share my perception of the world through the lyrics of the songs.

You’re also a father now. How has that changed your outlook on life?

Children are an incentive to get up and do things and try to build a future, which is something that I really never considered in the past. I suffer from a lot of anxiety attacks but they manage my stability.

How else have you matured since those wild days?

I am more aware of myself. Before I was a kid in poor conditions and had no sense of reality. What keeps us together is music, everything else is rubbish. Creating songs gives us control of our lives. I feel I wasted a lot of time in my life, but perhaps I had to hit rock bottom to be able to move forward.