“What about that Champions League draw, eh?” smirked Noel Gallagher, in an attempt to add some of the old Oasis frisson to this outdoor Glasgow Summer Sessions show.
“I’ll be there, laughing my b******s off as we put six past you.”
I’ll be there, laughing my b******s off as we put six past you.Noel Gallagher
Review: High Flying Birds | Bellahouston Park, Glasgow | Rating ****
He doesn’t perform with his brother Liam any more, in which case winding up Celtic fans seemed to be the only amusement available for the famous Manchester City supporter.
Yet it was all in good spirits, and there was never a hint – as there may have been in the past, when the Gallaghers came as a duo – that a change in mood might see the show brought to a halt early.
It might be fair to say that Noel’s High Flying Birds project is the sound of Oasis grown middle-aged and more mature, but it would also be fairly inaccurate; stretching right back to the mid-1990s, the elder brother’s lead parts on Oasis songs were always more reflective and grown up, and here he filled just over half of a 21-song set with these classics. Songs like Fade Away, Half the World Away, Listen Up and The Masterplan (dedicated to support act Richard Ashcroft) were typically mid-paced and yearning.
It’s an aesthetic which carries on into his work with High Flying Birds, albeit with a meatier full-band sound, for example on the ambling The Death of You and Me and If I Had a Gun... Occasional breaks in the mood appeared (early Oasis comedy song Digsy’s Dinner; the raw and noisy The Mexican; bona fide anthemics with the closing Don’t Look Back in Anger), but in general the air of laid-back and mid-paced nostalgia suited an artist and an audience who seem to revel in it.