Sunday 24 September 2017

Music: Oasis * * * *

Time Flies... 1994-2009 (Big Brother)

John Meagher

John Meagher

They may no longer be a going concern having split shortly after playing Slane last year, but this week this Oasis singles collection became the UK album chart's 900th number one.

Coming just three years after their best-of, this double album offers a reminder of what an incendiary band the Gallagher brothers and assorted friends were in the middle years of the 90s. Supersonic, Shakermaker, Live Forever -- they are anthems of defiance that remain as potent and glorious as when they were first released. Listening to them now, I'm transported right back to 1995 -- they soundtracked the entire year for me.

The cartoonish Roll With It marked a decline in songwriting abilities, yet this retrospective shows that they were still capable of writing great tunes when the mood took them. The Importance of Being Idle and Guess God Thinks I'm Abel can stand alongside their best work.

Yet, when they were bad, they were very, very bad. The mawkish Songbird confirms that their obsession with The Beatles sometimes didn't pay off, while the droning Do You Know What I Mean makes for unhappy listening for its entire eight-minute runtime.

Perhaps mindful of the fact that they released their best material in the early days, the tracklisting is not chronological. Yet, over the course of 26 songs, there are enough highs here to silence even the most avowed Oasis hater.

Burn it: Supersonic; Guess God Thinks I'm Abel

Irish Independent

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