“Looks like Oaysis have competition” – André and Fred listen to Liam Gallagher

This is part of a series in which two or more members of the Audioxide team listen to an album for the first time. Any instances of interest or insight are purely coincidental.

[“Wall of Glass”]

Fred
This was a pretty pleasant surprise when it came out

André
I enjoy this, yeah. I remember being pleasantly surprised by his voice

Fred
It still holds up well in the studio

André
Begs the question of how much of it is due to post-production processing and effects mind you…
Because some live performances have been pretty bad

Fred
Yeah, he blows hot and cold live
He did a great cover of “Natural Mystic” the other day though, so his voice is still there
Just weaker

André
I did see that and it was nice

Fred
Anyway, strong start this. Easy listening pop rock

André
Yeah, I like the fuzzy bass tone
Not something I’d usually associate with Oasis/Liam either

[“Bold”]

Fred
I think he actually wrote this one himself

André
The mixing is a delight, I will say

Fred
I like this
Production magic or not, his voice sounds great here

André
Definitely Maybe falls down on its mixing and production and this is just affirms that for me
You can hear everything and yet there’s still plenty of room
This isn’t bad at all

Frederick
Yeah, it’s immaculate actually
Definite poppy softness, but a good edge to it as well

André
For sure
I’ll say one thing
These first two tracks have more to them than anything from Noel’s Flying Boring Birds

[“Greedy Soul”]

Fred
I agree, and that’s the thing isn’t it
This really showcases Liam as a frontman
He’s so good at it
Give him a melody and a groove and he’ll deliver
In studio anyway
Haha, he’s not exactly Shakespeare is he

André
Was gonna say..
There just seems a bit more colour here than in Beady Eye or Noel’s stuff

Frederick
His voice is genuinely better now, which helps

André
He’s proper zen, mate.
Have you heard?

Frederick
3/3
Not bad

[“Paper Crown”]

André
is it me
Or is this a bit Bowie?

Fred
It is!

André
Ziggy Stardust era

Fred
This is really good
What’s going on?
The pitch difference on the harmonies are lovely

André
I can’t say it appeals to me directly, and I’m hardly the biggest Oasis fan anyway. But there’s no doubt that this record is shaping up to be one of the best post-oasis works yet – though the standard was hardly high..

Fred
I’m with you, but it’s pretty darn solid

[“For What It’s Worth”]

André
Heard this too
Again it’s kinda decent
The chorus is very Oasis’y

Fred
It’s a nice ballad delivered well
Bit of a throwback
One for the hype train I suppose

André
Sure

Fred
It’s funny, I think I’m enjoying hearing Liam deliver the songs more than I like the songs themselves
Like, it’s just nice to hear him fronting a sound well again

André
He actually has a very sweet falsetto haha
I’d dare tell him that though

Fred
You what mate?

[“When I’m in Need”]

André
This is a nice sonic change

Fred
Shades of Beatles here
Stop the presses

André 
Haha
I’m enjoying this one a lot
Perhaps my favourite so far
Harmonies alone are fab

Fred
It’s lovely
Feel like such a waste that Oasis had approximately one sound
Always feels a bit odd having instrumental breakdowns on solo singer records
Like, “Hit it, backing band!”

André
Haha, sure. Particularly as Liam didn’t exact write a lot of this
I’d say though that the choice to go with a co-writer was a good one

Fred
For sure. He’s been very open about it as well, which I appreciate
And he does have this weird knack for a decent tune of his own from time to time

[“You Better Run”]

André
The groove is a little clumsy
and he doesn’t sound too comfortable singing at this tempo either

Fred
It’s just not his style
It’s not bad per se
Just could just as easily not be there

André 
Weird though because he wrote this one?

Fred
I don’t think the sanitised sound helps with a song like this
Feels a tiny bit like Villains by Queens

André
That’s very true actually
Apt comparison too
Well it took us 7 songs to find a dud
Which is better than I thought!

[“I Get By”]

André
This one reminds me of something like Come Together – the Spiritualized one
It has a similar problem to the previous song though – and again his voice doesn’t suit this type of tempo.

Fred
That’s a good shout yeah
Would sound good live though

André 
I’m sure
Vocal melodies are sore here too actually

Fred
I think half the problem is his voice has been pulled back a little the last couple of tracks
Like, no one’s buying this album for the instrumentals

[“Chinatown”]

André
Hmm…
I have no idea what I think of this
One thing is certain so far though – the first half of the record was way better.

Fred
For sure
This struck me as an odd single choice when it came out
Still does

André
Oh, I didn’t know it was a single
I’ve not heard it before
And I still can’t figure out what it is

Fred
Well, it’s not much of a single is it
Would probably fair better between a couple of belters
Slow things down a bit

André 
Strange one
Could be a grower

[“Come Back to Me”]

Fred
This is pretty Oasis-y too
Weird effect on his voice

André
This is a bit better, though still not grabbing me entirely
Think the past few songs have worn me down a little.

Fred
Same. Not sure the production is as good here either, for whatever reason
That should’ve been better than it was

[“Universal Gleam”]

André 
I just correctly predicted each chord change in the first verse

Fred
Haha, this is better though

André
It is haha
But it made me laugh

Fred
His falsetto is angelic isn’t it
So odd

André
Unexpectedly yes
This tempo suits him
I’m not convinced he can keep up with the raucous rock’n’roll tempo anymore

Fred
No, the best songs here give him room to gather his vocals a little
And deliver through, like, singing
Rather than shouting
As is tradition

André
Certainly

Fred
Bringing it home nicely here
Right, last one

[“I’ve All I Need”]

Fred
Nice vibe
Same note played over and over seems appropriate for a Liam closer
Ooh nice

André
Haha, true enough.
The chorus is a good’un

Fred
Yeah
Soaring

André
My initial impression on this is at a light 6
I like the first half of the record
I’m in no major rush to return to it, but I’m glad Liam has found his voice again

Fred
Yeah, good for him
And there’s comfortably enough good material to tour with

André
Before the big Oasis reunion
Which will be £80 a ticket but will also DEFINITELY NOT BE ABOUT THE MONEY
🙂

Fred
To be fair, Noel will say up front that’s exactly what it’s about if it ever happens
But yeah, strong start, dips in the second half, but closes well
Looks like Oaysis have competition

André 
do you consider it a success?

Fred
I do in the sense that it’s not awful and showcases Liam as a really great frontman when he feels like it
I’m not moved, but that’s not really it’s goal

André
Yeah, I’m with you there
It’s gotten rotten-ish reviews from P4K and Guardians and whatnot but they are never gonna his audience anyway

Fred
Indeed. There’s some nice tunes in there, and people will see him live and get a healthy dose of Oasis and slightly contrived rock and roll
Everyone’s happy
Except Noel

André
Hurrah