You’ve gotta hand it to Oasis. Nowadays critics and fans wouldn’t let a band get away with lyrics like “I’ve been driving in my car with my friend Mr. Soft” or ““I got my hee-bee-jee-bees in a hidden bag” but for Oasis we’ve always cut them slack as their strength lies in the music itself. After giving their latest release “Dig Out Your Soul” a spin, I think Noel G. and Co. have also come to realize this.
Lyrically DOYS is what we’ve come to expect: Simple enough to memorize so you’ll be able to belt out every track word for word the next time Oasis hits your city. Liam does sing about ‘the rapture’ on more than one track and it makes me wonder if he knows something we don’t. But let’s focus on the music here. From the beginning Oasis has been known to have a Beatles influence and with ‘Definitely, Maybe’ being released in Madchesters heyday, they will always have the Britpop stigma attached to them. But since 2000’s Standing on the Shoulders of Giants, Oasis seems to have been leaning towards more of a psychedelic rock sound and Dig Out Your Soul feels like a culmination of this.
The album starts with ‘Bag it Up’, a typical sounding Oasis track, which makes sense as the lead-in. Keep the listener intrigued. As the album progresses, influences become more relevant. The dirty bass on ‘The Nature Of Reality’ and bluesy stomp-and-clap of ‘(Get Off Your) High Horse Lady’ sound like they took notice of 2002 tour mates Black Rebel Motorcycle Club where ‘The Shock of the Lightning’ sounds like Kasabian had thier hands in it. Of course The Beatles influences are ever-present throught – the closing of ‘The Turning’ sounds exactly like ‘Dear Prudence’ and Liams’ ‘I’m Outta Time’ is the usual Lennon-esque plink, plink on the piano and La, La La, La, La vocals. Although Liam is usually hailed as a great songwriter I feel that all of songs sound exactly like ‘Little James’. Stick to vocals Liam, thats where you really sheeeeeiiiiiinnnne. If I had to name the defining track for DOYS it would have to be the Gem penned ‘To Be Where There’s Life’. Complete with sitar, groovy bass, thumping beat and Liam belting ‘dig out your sooouuul, cos here we go’ it makes you want to get your Mancunian swagger on. This song is ripe for a proper remix. Take note Chemical Brothers.
It’s been almost 6 years of experimenting and tweaking but I think Oasis has finally the sound they’ve been searching for. Former Oasis manager Alan McGee sums things up perfectly by saying “…the notorious Oasis brothers have found their mojo. It’s back, without a doubt.”
Here’s a preview taken from the ‘Gold & Silver & Sunshine’ documentary, a look behind the scenes of the recording of the new album, the full-version will be available on DVD with the Limited Edition album.