By: Sun Noor
It has been near two years since Noel Gallagher and his High Flying Birds have payed Montreal a visit and graced us with their intoxicating sounds at the annual International Jazz Festival. Since then, Noel Gallagher has released a new experimental record, which features a wide range of musicians as well as a few odd instruments.
The concepts behind his third studio album Who Built the Moon ?, which was released last November came about during the process of finishing up his previous release, Chasing Yesterday. Gallagher considers his newest record his magnum opus as well as the album which he enjoyed putting together the most. In fact, this record remains his most experimental to date with the psychedelic and cosmic pop influences. Songs such as the opening track “Fort Knox” and the distorted, guitar-driven “The Man who Built the Moon” encapsulate the glam rock, psychedelic and cosmic pop direction which Gallagher intended to explore, which adds dimension to his music. My favorite track of the record is definitely the one that culminates it, “Dead in the Water,” which Gallagher did not intend to include onto the record. The song was archived from Gallagher’s acoustic performance at RTÉ 2FM Studios in Dublin and was then included into the record. What I love most about the record is its diversity. I could not have determine its direction with the release of the two first singles, given the fact that each of the songs are utterly dissimilar, yet flow together nicely. Moreover, there were also some new additions to the High Flying Birds during the process. Artists such as Charlotte Marionneau from Le Volume Courbe, who Gallagher calls “The Scissor Queen,” singer and keyboardist Jessica Greenfield and YSÉE who’s vocals features in “Fort Knox” and “Be Careful What you Wish for,” have also joined him on tour.
Gallagher’s sets for the North American tour were roughly lengthy and consisted of the majority of his new songs, some of his oldies, a few Oasis classics and a wonderful rendition of the Beatles’ “Love is all you Need.” There were plenty of psychedelic visuals that accompanied the songs throughout the gig, which really complimented the new tunes. Not only was the crowd treated to an other-worldly experience as it appeared as though Gallagher brought us into his cosmic pop-esque world. Getting to hear some of my favorite Oasis tracks such as “The Importance of Being Idle” also momentarily brought me back to my childhood since they were my first concert, allowing me to pleasantly revel in nostalgia still in awe of Gallagher’s presence. Altogether, this incredible gig was a great start to this week!
Here is a clip from NGHFB’s performance of “Be Careful What you Wish For.”