Liam Gallagher outshines the rest of his Beady Eye bandmates in Vancouver

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      At the Commodore Ballroom on Tuesday, November 29

      Liam Gallagher is still cool, but that doesn’t make Beady Eye, his new post-Oasis project, a cool band. The group, its stage setup, songs, and sound weren’t nearly as fascinating Tuesday night as the way Gallagher radiates an overwhelming sense of celebrity.

      After acrimoniously parting ways in 2009, Manchester brothers Noel and Liam Gallagher said goodbye to one of Britain’s most popular rock bands, Oasis. Topping the pops with hits like “Wonderwall”, “Champagne Supernova”, and “Supersonic”, Oasis was both controversial (the Gallagher siblings fought incessantly on- and off-stage, both physically and verbally) and catchy, that perfect match drawing fans (and haters) from every part of the spectrum. No press is bad press, right? It’s arguable that Oasis’s antics were often more popular than the music itself, even though the group managed to secure a solid place in the FM radio limelight for over a decade.

      Now Gallagher is on his own and, without the bombastic lead guitar and songwriting proficiency of his older brother, he’s relying on his celebrity appeal as Beady Eye kicks off a North American tour. And, of course, the newly crafted songs he’s written with old Oasis axemen Andy Bell and Gem Archer.

      The thing about Gallagher is that people still buy into his shit. He’s crass, charismatic, cartoonish, and as commanding as a dictator. These are all the things that made him appealing to the masses back when Oasis busted into the mainstream music scene in 1994, and these are the things that still make him captivating today.

      The crowd at the Commodore was a mixed bag of big-chested 40-somethings in Oasis shirts, excited tiny blond girls riding on people’s shoulders, and screaming die-hard Liam fans. As Beady Eye walked on-stage, the room filled with unified chants of “Liam”, repeated over and over until the rock star appeared. Dressed in what could have easily been something from his clothing line, Pretty Green, the younger Gallagher puffed out his chest like a drunken, aggressive bar jock ready to fight, spat on the stage, and scoped out the room.

      When Beady Eye launched into “Four Letter Word” (one of the catchier songs off its debut album Different Gear, Still Speeding) the crowd hollered and all eyes were on the singer as he leaned into the microphone, leg extended to the side in his signature stance, like a child tap dancer in a school musical. Between each song, Gallagher chugged bottled water, fixed his perfectly coiffed, 1960s mod haircut and edged toward the excited crowd like he was ready to pounce. “Beatles and Stones” (an obvious tribute to two great rock ’n’ roll bands he admires) and “Millionaire” followed, as his chiselled, weathered face became red and wet with sweat.

      Gallagher’s ego overshadowed the show, as his lyrics felt empty and void of any meaning, concerned as they were with stereotypically metaphorical lines about love, dreams, and loss. People threw cigarettes at his stylish tennis shoes as he asked where “all the chicks” were between songs like “The Roller” and “For Anyone”. He wiped his face with a clean, white towel and sweated through his coat while introducing Beady Eye’s big hit, “Bring the Light”, by asking, “Is anyone up for any irresponsible behaviour? That’s the name of the game, I think.” Although he didn’t do much, he was mesmerizing to watch, just for the fact that he was Liam Gallagher, spitting, stomping, and snarling within arm’s reach.

      The other members of Beady Eye meant nothing.

      Unfortunately, the difference between Beady Eye and Oasis is that the songs are simply not there. With Beady Eye you get a warm-hearted pop twang but no heroic melody, and that disappoints.

      Noel’s solo project, Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, isn’t gaining any great critical acclaim, and Beady Eye, although popular enough to almost fill the Commodore on a rainy Tuesday night, is barely sailing by. Maybe what kept Oasis’s music so tight, catchy, and irritatingly badass was the fire between its two battling siblings. Even though the iconic rock ’n’ roll brothers have declared publicly their mutual hatred for each other (they are currently in a legal battle) the thing that is holding their “solo” careers back is one another. After all, there would be no Liam without Noel, and no Noel without Liam. That’s the shit part about family: sometimes the ones who drive you to insanity are the ones you need the most.

      Comments

      18 Comments

      Lawrence

      Nov 30, 2011 at 12:16pm

      I saw Beady Eye back in Brighton (so I went to see The National again on Tuesday). I'm happy I did. Didn't think Beady Eye would get their act together by the time they hit Vancouver. Liam still acts like a dbag.

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      peter parker

      Nov 30, 2011 at 12:30pm

      Overall, a pretty good show. Not nearly as good as the Oasis concerts I've been too in the past, but it was fun seeing Liam spit and swagger close up. Ahhh, to be a rock star.

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      John L. Smith

      Nov 30, 2011 at 12:42pm

      From what I can tell Noel is getting tons of critical acclaim for his solo record. You haven't done much research in writing this drab.

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      Marco Nelson

      Nov 30, 2011 at 1:18pm

      John L. Smith, "tons of critical acclaim" as the 20 negative reviews Noel received? (even music magazines, Uncut Magazine, ClashMusic, etc.). Beady Eye didn't.

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      davy jones

      Nov 30, 2011 at 3:26pm

      the person who wrote this artcile seems like the kind of dirt bag who would call security on you for smoking marijuana in the bathroom of a bar

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      Spiderman

      Nov 30, 2011 at 3:37pm

      Liam a dictator? You're talking about Noel. Beady Eye are a democracy, as they continuously say, and clearly are. Noel decided everything in Oasis.

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      Way Too Jealous

      Nov 30, 2011 at 3:47pm

      Mish Way is an ugly fat fuck in love with Liam, who was obviously not interested in her. That's why she wrote all these things out of reality.

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      LiamOrNoel

      Nov 30, 2011 at 3:54pm

      agreed, the one writing this doesn't know who is who. Liam drunk? he's not drinking nor smoking anymore. Noel spent £7,000 in a bar the other week.

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      paul weller

      Nov 30, 2011 at 6:47pm

      This show was Amazing! Liam is a real rock and roll star he sounded great he had a crazy energy up on stage and the rest of the band made him sound great! Loved the tunes can't wait till they come back!

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      Bring back Oasis!

      Nov 30, 2011 at 7:19pm

      I have been to a several Oasis concerts and can tell you this does not measure up. I got dragged to the show by a friend who loves Liam and all he stands for. I simply can't stand the man. Too much flash with no content is about the most I can say for the show. Musically the band is good and Liam is still a great singer, but his retard attitude need to see the reality of the fact that he and the bunch of 40 somethings in the crowd are simply too old to act like dbags. I much more preffered the act as Oasis, at least they had a reason to act like they're big stuff. In a crowd this small Liam needs to take a look at his performance style and move on to things a guy his age should be singing about.

      Love Oasis, and can't wait to see them in 2015 when a potential 20 year 'morning glory' tour may happen as both brohters expressed interest. I would be surprised that even though they say they hate each other they still need to pay the bills and who wouldn't go see them play that full set again?

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