If there ever were an excuse for getting wasted to a heavy rock tune on an EP, this is it. This EP went even higher in the charts than Oasis’s previous EPs and by this time, the band were exploding in popularity, especially in the UK. Nothing could stop Oasis by this point. They had the tunes, melodies and swagger to conquer the world. Let’s take a listen and hear how it sounds today.
Cigarettes and Alcohol is a very interesting tune, beginning with a load of hiss and fuzz. Before you know it, the stolen T. Rex riff enters and this tune gets banging. This is fantastic from the outset, and Noel Gallagher articulately pens his then youthful desires to get ahead in the world…and cigarettes and alcohol. “You might as well do the white line because when it comes on top, you’ve gotta make it happen!” is a great set of lyrics about illicit drug use (obviously cocaine). A fantastic song for what it is, just don’t play it around squares and all will be okay. Nonetheless, one of the best Oasis songs made and a defining moment of 1990s Rock music. Fantastic and euphoric, Oasis obviously did not care about the negativity of these things, and Noel later openly acknowledged using drugs. But who hasn’t? A very enjoyable and listenable tune from start to finish, although the outro is a little lengthy, to be fair. Still, a top tune throughout.
I Am The Walrus – Live Glasgow Cathouse June ’94 is a piece from the gig in front of Sony executives, complete with overdubbed cheering at the start. Liam sounds silly in the intro (the Gallagher brothers are essential stand-up comedians who make serious music) and the band play The Beatles classic in a loud and monstrous fashion. Liam Gallagher’s voice is really fantastic, and he does fit the tune amazingly well. Nonetheless, this is completely different musically from the original tune. If anything, this sounds like The Sex Pistols doing a cover of I Am The Walrus. Still, it is a great cover all the same, and this made its way onto both the Definitely Maybe reissue and The Masterplan compilation. This is excellent for letting the imagination wander during a Punk Rock cover. There are five minutes of instrumental playing after the verses conclude. No doubt that this was a live favourite cover of Oasis. They even played this on the immortally famous 1996 Knebworth gigs. There is some epic and awesome delayed spacey slide guitar on a Gibson Les Paul by Noel Gallagher in this section. Still, even for an extended piece, this is a seriously enjoyable and listenable effort and is a brilliant cover through and through. Loads of feedback laden guitar are here, and Noel gets busy on making a great guitar impression on this cover, using an analogue pitch shifter as well. A very decent and enjoyable musical effort, this ends with just Bonehead, Guigsy and Tony McCarroll doing their rhythm section thing. A superb and wonderful effort from start to finish.
Listen Up begins with a basic drum part, the riff from Supersonic adapted into this song’s intro and a heavy dose of melancholy vibe. Liam Gallagher then enters with his singing, and although he sings very much in the same way he has sung on Definitely Maybe, he digs out emotions that you never thought you had in the first place. “Sailing down the river alone, I’ve been trying to find my way back home, but I don’t believe in magic, life is automatic. I don’t mind being on my own,” is a rather introspective lyric penned by Noel Gallagher to go with this tune. Sure, elements of it sound confident as per usual, but the vibe is rather sad. In any case, this is a good but not overly great song. Of course, Oasis were still on the right track at this stage, even if this track has conflicted emotions within. There is an extended solo section that uses the neck pickup of the electric guitar very well here. A simple song, possibly a bit lengthy as well. Nonetheless, this is most definitely (maybe) worth hearing. A good song, just not something you would wish to hear daily. Liam repeats the chorus refrain all the way to the end, with the rest of the band finishing it up. Good for what it is.
Fade Away begins with some loud and noisy Punk Rock style guitars, before launching into a fairly fast tune that Noel Gallagher later did better acoustically on his 2006 Sitting Here in Silence gig (which is available to watch on YouTube). Still, this is a good song and again, it is filled with proto-Coldplay melancholy, which is a little disappointing at this stage. “While we’re living, the dreams we have as children fade away,” is basically affirming Noel’s desire to hold onto the identities of the past whilst growing older. This is a good song but falls short of being a great song. Even so, Oasis weren’t exactly in Heathen Chemistry mode, they were still musically efficient and successful at this point. This is shorter than the other songs on this EP, mainly due to the blistering pace. A decent tune to hear, there is an extended solo section by Noel Gallagher to finish up this EP. Good job overall.
Once again, Oasis had successfully created a decent and short EP with some good tunes on it. This particular EP is maybe a tad less impressive than the others before it. However, it is still a great thing to listen to after some decades of it being created. Oasis fans will love this, but otherwise buying a brand new copy of Definitely Maybe and blasting it from start to finish would be better instead. Still, this is great music, even so.
Interesting and different.