Tag Archives: Liam Gallagher

Song of the Day: “Champagne Supernova” – Oasis


Noel Gallagher has described “Champagne Supernova” as the most psychedelic track that Oasis ever recorded. At an epic 7 minutes in length, watery beginning and drug-induced lyrics, that’s most certainly true.

At times, “Champagne Supernova” has been accused of having dumb lyrics, particularly  “faster than a cannonball”.  In the hands of Liam Gallagher, it hardly matters. He manages to elevate the mundane words and make them sound transcendent. This is especially true when the chorus is introduced in a quieter setting in the beginning. When he delivers the song’s most famous line – “where were you when we were getting high” – there’s a hint of nostalgia. In lesser hands, the lyric could come off as accusing, but Liam is smart enough come off as sympathetic and longing. As the song drifts into closing and Liam repeats, “we were getting high” over and over again, getting stoned has never sounded quiet so romantic.

If “Champagne Supernova” does have a flaw though, it’s the mixing. Oasis were well-known for adding layers of guitar tracks to their record, but during “Supernova’s” guitar solo, it’s almost too loud making it virtually impossible to hear the individual players. But all’s forgiven when the song reaches it glorious ending.


Band of Brothers?

The infamous Gallagher brothers from Oasis are at war, once again. This time, Liam is suing his older brother for libel regarding comments about the break-up of the band. Noel claims that Liam was too hung-over to play the V Festival in 2009, which the band eventually pulled out of. Liam wants everybody to know this is a lie.

Even between these two brothers, a lawsuit seems a bit extreme. Over the fifteen years since Oasis first burst onto the Brit-Pop Scene, both Liam and Noel have engaged in so much verbal warfare it’s nauseating to comprehend. Both of them are probably guilty of libel and slander towards each other at various points in their career, but they’ve always managed to put their feelings aside for the band. Indeed, if Noel can still work with Liam after their disastrous Unplugged performance – why not let bygones be bygones?

Note that Liam’s lawsuit was filed within mere weeks after Noel announced plans for a new solo album. In recent weeks, Noel has had massive interviews with numerous British Magazines including Q, and Mojo as well as Rolling Stone. The actual incident in question happened over two years ago.

Getting into a band with your siblings can be a messy affair, especially if one sibling is the creative genius in the group, like Noel Gallagher.  Just ask the Beach Boys, whose Brian Wilson was the driving force behind their biggest hits, and the seminal Pet Sounds album. Brothers Dennis and Carl Wilson were entangled in many legal battles with disputes over Brian’s psychological issues, and publishing rights. Creedence Clearwater Revival’s Tom and John Fogerty constantly battled over which direction the band would take, even though John wrote nearly all of the band’s music. The rift was so wide after the group broke up that the brothers didn’t speak to each other for nearly twenty years. Similarly, The Black Crowes Chris and Rich Robinson have always seemed to be at odds with each other since the beginning (and have gone on record as stating that they don’t talk to each other outside of the band) but have recently made-up enough to make new music before going on hiatus last fall.

Kings of Leon seem to be going down a similar path of sibling self-destruction. The three brothers and cousin are known just as much for their rivalry as they are their music. A clip for their new documentary Talihina Sky shows drummer Nathan screaming at lead singer Caleb, calling him “a piece of shit”. A few weeks ago, when the band was forced to cancel a gig mid-set due to Caleb’s “voice issues”, younger brother and bass player Jared came on stage to a crowd of boos informing the audience not to hate them, but Caleb.

Whatever issues remain within a band always seem to be exaggerated whenever siblings are involved. Sibling rivalry can certainly be intense, but it seems when it comes to music, some siblings have no problem throwing each other under the bus in exchange for saving face.


Beady Eye – Stealing From The Beatles Even More Than Oasis

I have to admit that I have a bit of curiosity for Beady Eye, the group that Liam Gallagher formed since his brother Noel Gallagher split from Oasis.  Truth be told, I probably wouldn’t have even known that he had formed another band if it weren’t for my occasional reading of British Rock magazines such as Mojo, Uncut, and Q.  Unlike US rock magazines, the British rock world hasn’t seem to have gotten tired of the Gallagher’s antics.

Oasis’ place in rock history isn’t quite as cemented as the British press would have you believe.  Their first two albums (Definitely Maybe and (What’s the Story )Morning Glory?) are great, but not life-changing.  But post-Glory, the most interesting thing about the band was the flares between the two brothers.  But despite the name-calling their drama can easily  be summed up by Noel’s hubris over his songwriting, and Liam’s insistence of being a “real” rock star.

Different Gear, Still Speeding sounds like Paul McCartney discovered some long lost Beatles demos and gave them to Liam Gallagher.   But at least Noel had the instinct to slightly cover up his Beatles’ obsession with loud guitars, and the occasional slight detour into the Manchester sound as if to prove he listened to new music post-1975.  But on Beady Eye’s debut, Liam not only takes cues from The Beatles, he’s even retained some of the Fab Four’s sonic textures.  George Harrison’s ghost plays some pretty great riffs, and busts out some pretty fantastic solos. “Millionaire” is  probably the song George Harrison wrote after his tax problems.  “The Roller” takes cues from Lennon’s White Album-era songwriting.  And “Bright Light” is a Paul McCartney rave-up on the likes of “I’m Down” and “The Night Before”.   Even the names of the songs themselves don’t disguise the younger Gallagher’s love for The Beatles. “Three Ring Circus” – “Being For The Benefit of Mr. Kite”, anybody?  And there’s no way “Wigwam” isn’t taken from the lyrics of “Hey Bulldog”: “Wigwam, frightening of the dark”

Of course, it’s kind of redundant to pick apart Gallagher’s obsession with The Beatles. When Oasis came out, it might have seemed that some people forgot about The Beatles, or didn’t view them as cool – I’m looking at you, Seattle.  Circa 1994-1995, Oasis filled a void of classicist pop that was missing, at least from American shores.  Since then, sales of Beatles albums and collections have soared, so it remains to be seen whether people will still be interested in a Beatles retread band without the drama.