Thursday 21 March 2019

John Meagher: Loaded - Liam Gallagher is consistent

Liam Gallagher's insistence that Oasis fans should not buy a forthcoming 20th anniversary edition of the band's much adored debut, Definitely Maybe, put a smile on faces this week. He's nothing if not consistent, Our Kid. "How can you re-master something that's already been mastered?" the younger Gallagher brother tweeted last weekend. "Don't buy it. Let it be."

Perhaps he wasn't enthused by the prospect of early demos and live cuts. The ex-Oasis frontman is the latest in a long tradition of musicians, writers and filmmakers who have urged fans to avoid their work.

REM's Peter Buck was spot on when talking retrospectively about the band's weakest album, 2004's Around the Sun: "The last record, for me, just wasn't really listenable, because it sounds like what it is – a bunch of people that are so bored with the material that they can't stand it anymore."

But Weezer's Rivers Cuomo may have been having a laugh when he dissed Pinkerton, which is now regarded as something of a classic of US alternative rock.

"The most painful thing in my life these days is the cult around Pinkerton," he said some years after its release. "It's just a sick album, sick in a diseased sort of way. It's such a source of anxiety because all the fans we have right now have stuck around because of that album. But, honestly, I never want to play those songs again; I never want to hear them again."

* It may not have been a surprise to mirror that of Bowie, My Bloody Valentine or Beyonce, but Coldplay released a new single without fanfare on Monday. Magic – a tender, understated ballad built around simple percussion and Chris Martin's keening vocals – bodes well for the new, sixth, album, Ghost Stories, which will be released on May 16.

Coldplay are frequently cited as a ginormous band with a beige frontman who represent all that's dull and samey with music today, but I've always thought the quartet were deserving of far more respect than such a glib put-down. Martin and friends will perform at the iTunes Festival at SXSW in Austin Texas on Tuesday.

* 2014 has, to date, been a quite exceptional year for new music: St Vincent, The Gloaming, Beck, Dum Dum Girls and James Vincent McMorrow are among those who have released must-have albums.

But you wouldn't know that by looking at the UK top 10 album chart this week. Only two albums – Beck's Morning Phase and Wild Beasts' Present Tense – were released this year. Bastille are chart-toppers with an album that came out exactly one year ago while Ellie Goulding's Halycon came out way back in October 2012.

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