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Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds - Chasing Yesterday (Album Review)

Monday, 02 March 2015 Written by Graeme Marsh

Don’t believe the hype. Noel Gallagher’s latest venture with his High Flying Birds does little to back up a throwaway “space jazz” claim, its foundations instead resembling the well-worn reference points that have emerged throughout the master recycler’s career.

The record’s lead single, In The Heat Of The Moment, duly sounds like Oasis and features backing chants cribbed from Kasabian, but gets away with it in style thanks to its inherent catchiness. Its b-side, Do The Damage, though, was better, boasting those elusive jazz elements and a tasty saxophone lick. It’s a disappointing omission from the album and is far too good to spend the rest of its days languishing as a flip-side.

There are other Oasis-like moments for the old guard, too. Lock All The Doors is straightforward rock ‘n’ roll along the lines of [What’s The Story] Morning Glory, and was in fact written during the band's earliest days and recently completed.

You Know We Can’t Go Back is another moment where Liam’s vocals wouldn’t sound out of place, but its faster tempo does little to elevate the track to repeated play status. The Mexican, too, is largely pedestrian and forgettable.

Riverman, though, is an enjoyable, bluesy cut in the vein of Gallagher’s mate Paul Weller that rides a nice guitar solo into a sax haze, while The Girl With X-Ray Eyes heads towards glam-rock with more than a subtle hint of David Bowie.

Ballad Of The Mighty I, meanwhile, features Johnny Marr’s distinctive guitar jangle alongside a driving bassline and stomping percussion, recalling the excellent AKA…What A Life! from the High Flying Birds’ 2011 debut.

The Right Stuff, which began life as part of his ill-fated Amorphous Androgynous collaboration, has also resurfaced here. The dusky track is exceptional and quite unlike the normal Gallagher fare, with its jazzy, brooding path boasting freestyle clarinet and superb guitar improvisation.

‘Chasing Yesterday’ isn’t going to tear up any trees for originality, but we knew that already. No surprises here, but a few tired rehashes of the past aside it’s not bad at all.

Noel Gallagher Upcoming Tour Dates are as follows:

Tue March 03 2015 - BELFAST Odyssey Arena
Wed March 04 2015 - DUBLIN 3Arena
Fri March 06 2015 - NOTTINGHAM Capital FM Arena
Sat March 07 2015 - GLASGOW SSE Hydro
Mon March 09 2015 - MANCHESTER Arena
Tue March 10 2015 - LONDON O2 Arena
Sat March 28 2015 - LONDON Royal Albert Hall
Sat July 04 2015 - LONDON Clapham Common

Click here to compare & buy Noel Gallagher Tickets at Stereoboard.com.



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