Be Here Now (CD)
I found this in the back of the cupboard the other day. Oasis’ 1997 release was accompanied by a tsunami of praise from the British press, and a resounding “meh” from everybody else, myself included. 1995 was a fun year for music: Blur, Oasis, Suede, Supergrass and a bunch of other Britpop bands made accessible pop that celebrated fun rather than the dour existentialism of grunge. (I hasten to add that Superunknown and Dirt are still teh shit!) Still, at that point in my life, I was coming into my own, standing on the threshold of adulthood. At Uni, I discovered the joys of beer and chasing girls and gradually, the “I hate myself and I want to die” ethos lost sway to the whole “Boys & Girls” and “LagerLagerLager” one.
Anyway, finding Be Here Now was a reminder that not everything about it was great. The amusing rivalry between Oasis and Blur quickly got tiresome, especially when Noel G stated in public that he hoped Blur would catch AIDS and die, or something. I moved to England to study in 1997, and picked up a copy of Mojo to read on the plane. Said Mojo contained Charles Shaar Murray’s review of Be Here Now, and let me tell you, it was the most sycophantic blowjob of a review ever bestowed on a grade-A turd, and I more or less lost faith in Mojo after that. See, I already knew the “album” was a POS; I picked it up the first week and to this day, I have never managed to get through it in one sitting. I think I’ve managed to get through 3 songs in succession, four at the most.
It sounds like cocaine and egos out of control, and not in a good way, either. I don’t think any of the Oasis albums are much cop, to be honest. They are in my head more as a result of the utter ubiquity of them rather than the quality. They had some rousing singles, I suppose, but when you compare their attempts at doing The Beatles to say, Jellyfish, it falls so short as to be embarrassing. Blur’s The Great Escape wasn’t that great either (again, Jellyfish pissed all over them), but it’s a decent, if flawed album.
It was also around this time that Liam Gallagher called out the remaining Beatles for a fight(!) after George Harrison mentioned in an interview that they weren’t quite as good as they themselves reckoned. It was so stupid it beggared belief. George Harrison was in fact a very polite gentleman: Be Here Now is a turd, plain and simple, and I’d really like to give the damn thing way. It’s just that nobody wants it.