This is the last release of the Oasis lineup which included Liam Gallagher, Noel Gallagher, Bonehead, Guigsy and Alan White. They had worked very hard as a musical unit, but there were major problems by this point on in early 1998. Interband tensions were on the rise as Noel Gallagher began to cut out his drug use and enforce that mentality on everyone else. Also, 1997’s Be Here Now album, initially praised, was by this point seen as a letdown. That was the parent album of this EP release. Still, it is going to be an interesting listening experience and is the last release for around two years from Oasis until the Standing On The Shoulder Of Giants album, released in early 2000 arrived. Let’s hear it in any case.
All Around The World is the longest #1 in history in the UK and many other countries, in terms of song length, and was written many years before. You read correctly. It begins with some gorgeous acoustic guitar strumming with some clean electric guitar parts. We are underway. Soon enough, drums enter and this song gets going. A great vocal from Liam Gallagher enters, and this song sounds awesome. In the bridge is some great singing, along with two orchestras recorded for this song. This is a wonderful and beautiful song, and the chorus is infectious. An amazing and euphoric tune with some of Noel Gallagher’s best lyrics: “All around the world, you’ve gotta spread the word, tell ’em what you’ve heard, you know it’s gonna be OK”. There are some na-na-na’s in the buildup to the key change, some of them adopted from Champagne Supernova. A truly great tune to hear, and the key change is different. A very profound and enjoyable statement from Oasis, it sounds really wonderful. A great listen, there is a thunderous midsection before the second key change occurs. We hit the chorus after that second key change, and Liam Gallagher makes this tune come alive. Excellent music, there is so much going on in this song. A truly happy and wonderful song, this has some great musicianship on it. The playing of this song is marvellous by all. “Please don’t cry, never say die!” is shouted here by Noel Gallagher, before this tune enters a lengthy jam section. An awesome listen, and something really out there that is cool. The instrumental continues on for some time before some more multitracked harmonies enter and this thing sounds rather drug influenced. Which it probably was. Nonetheless, a great song, even if it goes on for what feels like 10 years. Brilliant regardless, the outro is epic.
The Fame begins with loud guitars and pounding drumbeats, before launching into a song that is Noel Gallagher whinging about being rich and famous. It is basically a cry for help, although the music is upbeat. The chorus in particular is fairly direct, and it sounds as though Noel Gallagher is struggling to be a rockstar here in the limelight. An odd tune in the back catalogue of Oasis releases, Noel doesn’t sound happy here at all. “You may laugh while you sit there, sipping your champagne. They all laugh at your despair, sniffing your cocaine. I’m a man of choice in an old Rolls Royce and I’m howling at the moon, is this happening too deafening for you?” is the bridge, and these lyrics say a lot. Noel was, by this point, struggling with drug use and he had nothing to hide. Musically, this isn’t the greatest Oasis song, but it is okay regardless. Drug addiction is a real 21st-century problem in western society, and this song proves so. Good listen, even if it isn’t the best Oasis song.
Flashbax segues in from the previous song, beginning with some cool drumming and Noel Gallagher sings nicely about the simple life spent with a friend. The bridge is very Pink Floyd sounding, with acoustic guitars and nicely matched keyboard sounds. This is a great song, and it sounds like a good mixture of emotions throughout. This is perhaps proof that Noel Gallagher hadn’t lost his mojo by this point, he was still standing tall as a musician here. The acoustic guitars and electric guitars present in this song are really great sounding. In the second half of the song is an upbeat guitar section, followed by Noel Gallagher whistling a solo, rather than playing a loud guitar solo instead to fit the song. Nonetheless, an awesome listen. This tune is a bit lengthy, but it still sounds good to this day. Anyway, this tune has a very noisy conclusion with repeated lyrics and pounding drums, along with loud electric guitars. It’s okay, but not fantastic.
Street Fighting Man is a cover of The Rolling Stones song. It begins with Noel Gallagher talking about the wires lying everywhere in the studio before this song gets kicking. It sounds fairly similar to the original song. Unfortunately, Liam Gallagher’s voice is very much terrible sounding and is not mixed very well here, either. It’s okay, but definitely, Oasis have done better elsewhere. It’s only a cover, mind you, but quite frankly, it sounds awful. This should have been dropped off this EP in favour of something better. Anyway, a tune that sounds like The Rolling Stones being butchered. You’ll be very glad when this song is over, it’s very terrible. Nothing worth hearing, this gradually fades out to finish. Rubbish.
This is not the greatest Oasis EP out there. In fact, it sounds largely ordinary and definitely not worth your time. Even All Around The World itself is a drag at the best of times, as it is over nine minutes long. Only real Oasis fans should hear this EP, otherwise, find something else to listen to. A bit of a disappointment here.
The last of the classic Oasis era tunes.