27th May, 2005

Recovering from my Oasis theme day

A brief post from my Starbucks office in Holborn, London. Last night, the gravy boy and I had something of an Oasis theme-day.

After checking in at the Colombia Hotel (scene of many Oasis hotel room smash-ups), we asked the nice receptionist if Liam and Noel were due in. “I do hope not”, was her wry reply. Later, it was meetings with the folks over at Poptones (Oasis mentor Alan McGee’s new label), to discuss a forthcoming redevelopment of their website. Finally, it was some hot guest-list action over at Hammersmith Apollo for the last London date of Oasis’ small-venues tour. Like me, you might have thought the Oasis glory days ended around 1997, but it seems we could be wrong…

The guest list thing would’ve been more comfortable were it not for the fact that we were on the list as two very well-known music industry faces, whom we resembled in no way whatsoever. I won’t say who sorted out the passes for us, but big thanks. Especially big thanks seeing as Oasis are having something of a renaissance.

I’ve seen that band five or six times now, the first way back in 1994 (and that didn’t cost me anything either). That gig blew my head off, and I’ll never forget the emotion, noise and genius of that night. Since then, at varying points, Oasis have flattered to be a great band, but often delivered little. That coupled with the fact that their recorded music has deteriorated since 1996 meant I was a bit sceptical before last night’s gig.

However, a good Oasis gig depends on whether Liam can be arsed. Invariably he will shout the lyrics, cut them short, rasp when he would normally offer something melodic or gentle. Equally, he is renowned for looking at the audience as though they are worthless scum. Thankfully, last night Liam was clearly “mad for it” (sorry, readers). Looking really fucking cool, and singing with real emotion, he didn’t put a slanty foot wrong all gig. He went for every subtlety of the recordings, and looked to be having a good time. Blimey.

Song after song (and there were many oldies from Definitely Maybe and What’s The Story…) the crowd were wowed. I have never, ever seen every single person in an audience (and I mean EVERY person) singing the lyrics and waving their arms to a live song, but that happened several times last night, and during the stupidly epic Don’t Look Back In Anger I thought I was gonna cry. Gush.

The new tunes were a bit lacklustre, although Lyla sounded fantastic, which surprised me as I wasn’t that keen on it when it came out. Generally though, they seem to be back on it again. Apparently the Guardian gave their new album 10/10. Not sure about that, but hey, why not give them some credit for once?

Now, don’t get me wrong. I loved Oasis with a passion in 1994/5/6/7. When you love a band that much, it takes a lot to wipe out your loyalty. I held Oasis up there with The Smiths, The Stone Roses, New Order and all the old 60s bands I grew up listening to thanks to my Dad. Oasis aren’t the cutting edge any more, they aren’t gonna break any new ground, but I defy anyone to have Rock And Roll Star sang at them with that much noise and passion and not be won over again.

Anyway, I’m sure lots of you hate Oasis, so do have a good rant, or swear quietly to yourselves. To those of you that “get it”, go away and stick Definitely Maybe on, turn it up - loud, and stick two fingers up to everyone else. Oasis still rock. They rock a fucking fat one. Welcome back.

Set list

  1. Fuckin’ In The Bushes (Intro)
  2. Turn Up The Sun
  3. Lyla
  4. Bring It On Down
  5. Morning Glory
  6. Cigarettes and Alcohol
  7. Stop Crying Your Heart Out
  8. Little By Little
  9. The Importance Of Being Idle
  10. A Bell Will Ring
  11. Live Forever
  12. The Meaning Of Soul
  13. Mucky Fingers
  14. Champagne Supernova
  15. Rock ‘N’ Roll Star
  16. Songbird
  17. Wonderwall
  18. Don’t Look Back In Anger
  19. My Generation

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