Noel’s younger brother has teamed up with his “army of songwriters”, as the older Gallagher mocked, to deliver a likable pop album that mixes two things Noel was best known for, sounding like The Beatles and writing Oasis crowd-pleasers.
Most of the tracks could be late-era Beatles outtakes, down to George Harrison’s guitar gently weeping, while other songs are basically rewrites of Oasis tunes. Liam gets songwriting credits but his team includes jazz pianist Greg Kurstin (Adele, Beck), Andrew Wyatt (Bruno Mars, Mark Ronson) and Michael Tighe.
On one hand it’s an album of songs that copy The Beatles (who inspired Noel) or Oasis (actually Noel), on the other, it’s an enjoyable psychedelic pop album upon which analysis is wasted, and for which Liam’s voice is ideal.
Andrew Ridgley springs to mind (he’s made £10m from Wham, most of it from Careless Whisper, on which he got a writing credit) but that’s probably unfair. Liam can sing and did more than give moral support to Noel; much of Oasis’s success was down to the vocals and swagger of the front man. But still: you get the feeling Liam turns up, shakes a tambourine and sings the words put in his hand, not least because the song-writing credits are in teeny tiny type.
The lyrics are either vague songs of love or getting at Noel, guaranteeing some free PR: “You Reap What You Sow” says a sign Liam is pictured against on the sleeve; most songs could be interpreted as looks back to Oasis and/or their falling out.
That aside: a decent pop album, if you like your pop predictable and melodic. Not the most interesting release of the year, though.
Support your local record shop! If you’ve not got one, support us (an independent newspaper) and buy this from here: