Liam Gallagher returns with the debut album from his new project, Beady Eye.
Beady Eye – Different Gear, Still Speeding
Far from being the Oasis: the sequel, Beady Eye (or Oasis minus Noel) have relished being away from Oasis merry-go-round of non-captivating releases. Coming out with all guns blazing, bursting with optimism and rousing radio rock anthems.
Liam’s vocals are hard to distance from his former band, but these songs bound along with a new found spring in their step. His snarling elongated syllables have real bite and vigor on feel good, up-tempo tunes such as album opener Four Letter Word and Standing On The Edge Of The Noise. What with the jovial honky tonk piano wielding Bring The Light and the light feeling of For Anyone, Beady Eye have clearly lightened up and are having fun once again.
Sadly the latter portion of Still Speeding Different Gear has very little of standout quality. Thankfully there is enough decent tunes in it’s outward 9 such as the addictive single Roller (despite its lack of melodies) and the “influences on sleeve” tribute to the Beatles & Stones. In fact they are less on their sleeves and more on one of those gigantic TV’s circling Piccadilly circus.
The success of this album lies in re-invigorating 60’s guitar pop and is some cases, blatantly copying it! Exhibit A: Three Ring Circus/Getting Better (the Beatles); Exhibit B: Beatles & Stones/My Generation (The Who).
With a whole raft of good tunes and a return to some more carefree, less pressured days, this album can only be described as a success.
Mr Flowers Says:
You might fear the worst from the first album from either of the Brothers Gallagher since Oasis’ breakup but there are times during Different Gear, Still Speeding where, against accepted wisdom, you might wonder if Liam might have been the real musical tour-de-force in his old band.
That’s all hogwash, of course, but with vocals in good form and those falling horns that greet you before leading you into the rocking verses of Four Letter Word, it does seem at times closer to the Oasis of old then Oasis themselves ever did in their final years. Perhaps part of the reason for that are those old influences that heavily influenced Oasis are back featuring probably more prominently than ever – hell, if you cut open The Roller I’m sure you’re going to find some All You Need Is Love DNA in there.
There’s a bit of a swagger in Wind Up Dream with it’s harmonica and balling bassline, and Bring The Light has a classic Blues riffs played on a piano with the always welcome gospel singers providing the odd bit of backing – all very nice. The cracks don’t really start showing until things slow down for the first time on the album’s ballad, Kill For A Dream. We can’t really fault Liam’s ear for a good melody or a decent rock song, but where he falls down is the lyrics. While remembering previous lyrically desolate Liam efforts like Little James (off of Standing on the Shoulders of Giants), we lucky folks get treated to new pearls of rhyming couplets like, “I’m here if you wanna call/Staring at the spot on the wall,” “A looking glass hard thrown at the wall/You don’t see me but I see it all,” and who can forget, “Well here’s my glass and here’s one for you/’Cause these dark glasses means something to do”. Oh man! Deep stuff.
So that pretty much dispels that Liam as musical-genius theory, especially with the backend of the album dotted with meandering efforts that don’t go anywhere like Wigwam and The Morning Song, and then there’s the irritating The Beat Goes On, which finds Liam in an introspective mood as he sings about the arduous life of being an International Rock Star. But, despite all that, you can pretty much forgive the lyrical lows of the album given by the fact that Different Gear is actually a generally good effort with some decent tunes on it – something for Noel to think about, lest he wants to be shown up by the band he left.
DoesItRock Overall Score: 7/10
Listen to Beady Eye – Different Gear, Still Speeding now on Spotify!