Oasis’s debut album, Definitely Maybe is one hell of a record. To come out of the gates with an album this good is tremendous. I still remember the first time I played the album. The moment “Rock N Roll Star” started, I knew this album was something special. The sheer rock elements of it along with the lyrics and Liam’s voice have made this song live a very long and prosperous life. Noel Gallagher wrote the song and the story behind it is interesting in that he said that “Rock N Roll Star,” “Live Forever,” and “Cigarettes & Alcohol” were the only three songs he wrote that said something and that the others were just him repeating himself in a different way.” Well no matter what, this song is one hell of a way to start off an album.
It always seems to go back to 1994. That year is like a fine aged wine or a wonderful scotch, there is just something magical about 1994. We all know how many legendary albums came out at this time but, there is one that is often overlooked. The album I’m talking about is Oasis’s, Definitely Maybe. When you have songs like “Supersonic,”Rock N Roll Star,” and “Live Forever,” on your debut album, not only are you going to hit it out of the park but also really leave a lasting mark. Definitely Maybe is often regarded as “the” album that started the “Brit-Pop” movement. The songs on the album were all written by Noel Gallagher, and he really cemented his legacy with these songs. The album is full of classic rock n roll, pop, glam, and a bit of psychedelia. There really isn’t a bad song on this record. “Shakermaker,” “Up In The Sky,” “Bring It On Down,” “Cigarettes And Alcohol,” and “Slide Away” have always been the deeper cuts that have stood out to me. Noel’s songs really came to life courtesy of the band as a whole. Liam Gallagher’s voice put the guts in to the songs. Paul “Bonehead” Arthurs and Noel’s guitar work really added a brightness and edge to the record. The rhythm section of Paul “Guigsy” McGuigan on bass and Tony McCarroll on drums gave the album the pulse and heartbeat.
Something else about Definitely Maybe that stands out is that this album was a beacon of light in the music world. Before this album, Nirvana, Alice In Chains, Pearl Jam and Soundgarden were dominating the airwaves. Those bands vibes and realism made a deep connection to those out there that were looking for something, lost or feeling helpless. Oasis addressed those elements but provided a sense of living and fun. The Gallagher brothers antics alone helped to usher in this new sense of life.
Definitely Maybe is and always will be one of the best debut albums. A lot of people think that this was the bands pinnacle but, that just isn’t the case. If you take the time to delve into the Oasis catalog you will find that this band is truly great. Noel Gallagher is one of the most underrated and prolific songwriters of all time. Do yourself a favor and take a few minutes out of your day and let Definitely Maybe start your day off right.
It’s been over ten years now since Oasis has played a show. Their last album, Dig Out Your Soul, was a return of sorts to the roots of the band. While it didn’t have the “pop” of Definitely Maybe or What’s The Story Morning Glory, it was still a record to be proud of and could stand out in the bands catalog. We all know the stories of the fighting between Liam and Noel Gallagher. It’s really a shame that they can’t seem to figure out how to just get along. Noel has released three solo albums since Oasis’s break up. Each of those albums hark back a little to the Oasis days. After all, Noel was the one that wrote the songs. The second of Noel’s solo albums, Chasing Yesterday, is one hell of a good album. It’s one of those records that just feels right and sounds great too. After the initial break up, Liam and the rest of the members of Oasis formed the band Beady Eye. That band was decent but it sure lacked the substance that Oasis had. Last year though, Liam released his debut solo album called As You Were, and that album is tremendous. There are songs on it that almost feel like they could have been Oasis songs.
In the past couple weeks, Liam was on twitter and tweeted out messages (see below) to Noel, saying that they should knock off what ever it is between them and get the band back together. There are even rumors kicking around that Liam and Noel will reunite on stage at a festival coming up in England, since they are playing the same festival, on different days. Oasis was a band that if you go back and listen to, you can really hear how great they were. Yes, they had massive egos but, there is no denying the bands ability to craft great songs and deliver a great performance. Thankfully I was able to see them back in 2007, and that show was spectacular. I’m hopeful that Liam and Noel and figure out their crap and get the band back to where it was.
Since I heard Liam Gallagher’s solo album As You Were, I’ve been on a kick of listening to all things Liam and Oasis. While listening to all these albums I’ve really come to realize how truly great Oasis was. I did have the pleasure of seeing them live back in 2007 before they announced their break up. It was a great show with a really good set list. Needless to say I’ve put together an album ranking of Oasis’s albums from not their best to the absolute best.