“Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds” – Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds
After a horrible break up of Oasis in August of 2009, we now turn to the projects that resulted from that night. Noel Gallagher left the band Oasis leaving Liam and the reminder of the band still intact. During this time, what remained of Oasis got a few more band members and made the band “Beady Eye,” which released their record, “Different Gear, Still Speeding,” earlier this year on February 28th. This was stated to be the best material written by Liam ever since “What’s the Story Morning Glory.” Critically it was seen as mediocre work and sounded like an older vintage version of Oasis that existed before “What’s the Story Morning Glory.”
“Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds,” is not retribution to the breakup of Oasis but an actual work of art that could not be replicated by any other musician. The composure of the songs and structure has obviously some borrowed composure from Oasis, but in the end is something new. With no restrictions from other band mates and having only himself to rely on, this album is the sound and evolution that needed to occur to push forth the creative nature of Noel.
Two of the tracks “(I Wanna Live in a Dream in My) Record Machine,” and “Stop the Clocks,” were recorded for Oasis but were brushed off to the side for trivial reasons and placed in this album. The guitar and rest of the instruments can be easily heard as meant for Oasis and strikes a remembrance of earlier albums like, “Don’t Believe the Truth.” “Stop the Clocks,” a sound specifically made for Oasis lacks the vocal delivery that Liam could bring to the already superb song.
“If I Had a Gun,” is another song which has a familiar sound but is also something new. It was written during warm up rehearsals in the last Oasis tour. “It’s kind of a song you’d expect me to write,” Noel told NME before it was pulled from being the single of the album. This song does bring some memory of Oasis but in the end works in favor of this album showing who truly was the drive and force of Oasis. This song gives the delivery we would expect with the style still being similar and tasteful. Lyrically the track speaks of love saying, “If I had a gun, I’d shoot a hole into the sun. And love would burn this city down for you.”
The first single of the album “The Death of You and Me,” surfaced in June of this year. It does not sound too much like his previous band and has catchy lyrics which talk about two lovers. There is a more distinct sound and style than what we are used to from this artists. The use of the French horns and guitar makes this sound like a fusion of Louisiana themed music with a sprinkle of Noel’s lyrics. “You and me. Forever we’d be free. Free to spend our whole lives running. From people who would be. The death of you and me.” Another track which still is a fusion of his former band and his new directions is “AKA…Broken Arrow.” We can finally hear a slight change in the vocal delivery but still have that homely sounding guitar that carry the song through
The majority of the tracks resemble some of our favorite Oasis tracks but the purpose of this alum was to play music. This is seen in “AKA…What A Life,” which is a vast departure from what has been done before by the artist. The sounds are nothing that have been heard before and are a totally different take from what we are accustomed to instrumentally from Noel Gallagher. With that being the case, the songs pulsating beats and rhythm are astounding. The song is lyrically simple and conveys no true message unlike, “If I Had A Gun…” but still is the best song by far on this album. There were some doubts about the song as it was being made: “I had the guys listen to it, they all went, ‘Hmmm, its a bit weird innit it, a bit weird for you.’ And i was saying, ‘Yeah its a bit weird innit.’ But then all the girls are going, ‘I fucking love it, its amazin.’ And I was goin ‘it is fuckin amazin, fuck you you fucking old fart is is fucking amazin.'” – Noel Gallagher referring to “AKA…What A Life” talking to NME.
Though a controversial subject, there must be a comparison between this album and “Different Gear, Still Speeding.”
The tracks and lyrics of Beady Eye’s album are mundane and only capture the attention of listeners’ for a short amount of time. The simplistic style and melody of the album shines only because of the vocals of Liam, which at times do not even suffice to accredit a song as a hit. Their single, “Bring the Light,” sounds descent but too similar to early Oasis and older 60’s and 70’s English rock. This does not discredit the track but lacks the originality and intent that the Oasis brand carried with it. “The Roller,” was not released as a single but became the popular song on his album showing that this band lives only because they used to be Oasis. Mainly only Oasis fans will truly appreciate and admire this album.
On the other hand for “Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds,” we see a broadening of a fan base. With songs like “AKA…What A Life,” we open the listeners to a more adult contemporary style that is admired in both the UK and US. There is enough of a different style per song on this album to not only keep the faithful Oasis fans but also attain new listeners. “Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds” is a great album with some memories of his former band, but is not only a recollection of revamped old material. It does deliver to the Oasis fans tracks that they would expect to hear but also gives new definitions to what Noel Gallagher can do lyrically and instrumentally.