The Libertines have released a new single, “Night of the Hunter,” along with a music video for the track. The song will appear on the band’s upcoming fourth studio LP, All Quiet on the Eastern Esplanade, out March 8, 2024 via Casablanca/Republic Records.
The video was directed by Alex Brown and filmed in Cliftonville, Margate, and the Libertines’ hotel The Albion Rooms. It’s the second installment in a series of Margate-themed videos following single “Run, Run, Run,” which feature the characters from the songs on All Quiet on the Eastern Esplanade.
The song’s title was drawn from Charles Laughton’s film, which stars Robert Mitchum as a preacher with “Love” and “Hate” tattooed on his knuckles.
“The song’s about not staying ahead of the law,” frontman Peter Doherty explained in a statement. “This fella doesn’t really know why his mate’s dead, but he’s got a feeling his mate had it coming to him. He fucked with the wrong people, and he stole something he shouldn’t have, and he got stabbed. So, he’s angry and hurt and he has to go and get revenge, so he does and that’s it for him, basically. Once he has stabbed the lad who stabbed his mate, that’s it for him. He lashed out in revenge and he knows they’re coming to get him and he’s not even going to try and run because he knows he’ll just be running forever.”
“I started writing a riff and it ended up sounding a bit like Swan Lake, and everyone went, ‘Yeah!’” guitarist Carl Barât added. “Then we got Peter’s theremin player in which took about a day to get in tune, then he played that sequence and it worked beautifully. The idea of getting carted off for ten years is horrendous. The condemned man dies 1000 times.”
All Quiet on the Eastern Esplanade is the Libertines’ first new album in nine years. It was produced by Grammy-nominated producer Dimitri Tikovoï and recorded at The Albion Rooms in Margate. The band’s last LP, Anthems for Doomed Youth, arrived in 2015.
Ahead of the album’s release in March, the Libertines will play several shows in the U.K., including two in Margate this week.