Tuesday, February 19, 2002

I WAS IN THE SHOWER THIS MORNING and I was thinking that, perhaps, it was time I posted some positive stuff to XRRF, what with having done a fair bit of knocking in the last couple of weeks. It was starting to sound like I didn't even like music. And with the news that Mercury Rev are coming to Liverpool, and Michael Eavis has come to his senses and is thinking again about letting the Mean Fiddler start to creep towards taking over Glastonbury, and an AC Acoustics album now and a Clinic album soon gave lots of reasons to be smiley.
And then this happened.
Oasis have announced a new single, and right away everything about it stinks. It's called The Hindu Times, for Vishnu's sake. (Doubtless if it had been Ringo and not Harrison who died last year it would have been called Percy the Angry Engine.) And nme.com offers a sample of the lyrics: " The song includes the lines ‘I get up when I'm down/ I can't swim but my soul won't drown/ I do believe I've got flare/ I got speed and I walk on air.’ The chorus is: ‘Cos God give me a soul/ In your rock ‘n' roll band/ I can get so high I just can't feel it.’ "I'm in a rock and roll band, me, look, I have taken drugs." The fresh, new sound of a bright new century. How far has the group moved on since "all your dreams are made/ when you're chained to the mirror and the razorblade"? Apart from sliding backwards in the lyric writing stakes.
A lot of rubbish was written after Sepven about how nothing would be the same again, how art and culture would have to reform to cope with a world where thousands of people can die almost instantly, for no reason. But while it was bollocks, and poems about the Queen Mother and songs about fucking were just dwarfed by the moment, not rendered extinct, in the middle of it all los Bros Gallaghers popped up in an nme interview, yammering about nothing. When even the most strictly-policed internet fanfic lists abandoned their usual structures to try and absorb what we'd seen, the Gallaghers appeared as unaffected as babes in arms. This is, of course, the mark of their failiure; as a songwriter, Noel appears to have no interest beyond his guitar; the band appear incapable of absorbing their surroundings. It's not merely that they cannot turn their experiences into great, age-defining music; they seem unable to experience in the first place. And unless they can learn how to, Oasis' future is one of releasing records that are the aural equivalent of names marker-penned on walls by bus-stops: "Noel was 'ere." But for no reason, to no end; for no purpose.

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