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Birmingham, 28/11/07

From icBirmingham:

TROUBLED Pete Doherty has banned booze from his tour bus and is turning to Chinese meditation to get him back on the straight and narrow.
And it seems to have worked, as he put in a strong performance, proving just how talented he is.
There was no slurring, no late appearance or bad behaviour last night. In fact, Pete was being so good, he didn't even light up the cigarette hanging from his mouth.
The bad boy may have disappeared for the night, but the rock'n'roll entertainer was still there as he coquettishly won over the crowd with his silly Birmingham accent and boyish good looks.
Wearing black jeans and a jumper (the iconic hat stayed off until after the interval), Pete immediately shrugged off any worries of an Amy Winehouse-style stage meltdown.
For the next 90 minutes, Babyshambles were allowed to do what they did best before Pete's addictions, arrests and Kate Moss dramas got in the way.
His soft husky tones revitalised a cover of Culture Club's Karma Chameleon, intermingled with tracks from Delivery to The Blinding and Kilamanjiro.
Pete was so on the ball that he even changed the words to Down In Albion to "down at Digbeth Irish Centre" and gave a shout out to Birmingham's famous Mr Egg cafe.
The finale of anthemic Forever saw British flags drop from the ceiling above a sea of waving arms and reminded fans of this band's place in the Brit music scene.
For once with Pete Doherty, the music came first and there was nothing else to overshadow his abilities.
Afterwards, fans said they relieved to see Babyshambles pull out all the stops despite Pete Doherty's chequered past.
Couple Craig Keegan, a 26-year-old postman, and admin assistant Grace Richards, 25, from Bromsgrove, were delighted to see Pete Doherty perform.
Grace said: "Pete is back on form after all his problems and came out to give fans what they wanted, good luck to him."
Accountant Steve Richards, aged 27, said: "I was glad that Pete turned up as I didn't know if he would.
"After that performance, I think he is over the bad times and has come through it a better person. The future's bright, the future's Babyshambles."
Johnathon Gray, a microbiologist from Northfield, said the band had exceeded his expectations and added: "I love Pete - he is a hero in a hero-less world."
Mike Brinkworth, 27, from Solihull, added: "After the Amy Winehouse gig in Birmingham, I think a lot of people were worried the same would happen with Babyshambles, but Pete pulled himself together to perform brilliantly."
(Review by Alison Dayani)

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