Constructive criticism is one thing, but some of the scathing reviews I have read on here are nothing short of pathetic.
Quite what the hell people expect from Oasis in this day and age is beyond me. After years of relative underachievement, 'DBTT' should be celebrated not berated.
Between the release of 'Supersonic' in 1994 and the enormity of Knebworth in 1996, Oasis were untouchable. Two classic albums, nine fantastic singles (with phenomenal b-sides often topping them), a clutch of era-defining gigs... they weren't a band, they were living legends, and like many teenagers back then, Oasis meant the world to me.
But 'Be Here Now', for all its inspired moments (DYKWIM?, Fade In/Out, Don't Go Away) arguably pushed the formula too far, with a bored/arrogant Noel going through the motions, creating an overcooked monster built on foundations of feedback and rock cliches. The fact he denounces it so much now pretty much sums it up. I'd love to hear a stripped down/edited version of it, slimmed down by about 20 minutes or so.
'SOTSOG' was very much a transitional album, with Noel in reflective mood post-drugs, post-Creation... and, of course, the departures of Bonehead and Guigsy. It's a flawed record, sure, but there ARE good moments on there. You just have to stay awake through the rather bland production to hear them.
For me, though, I'd long since lost interest in Oasis, and I only bought SOTSOG out of habit/curiosity, as 'Go Let It Out' hinted Noel was striving towards new horizons, though the rest of the album never really caught up with it (that promise was arguably fulfilled on DBTT and maybe the new "groove-based" album, too)
I didn't buy Heathen Chemisty, though quite liked the (slightly Oasis-by-numbers) singles, and the interviews were still hilarious. I just didn't care anymore, and felt nothing they could do would live up to my earlier memories of them as a once-great band.
I had the same attitude towards DBTT, too, to be honest, and didn't buy it when it first came out. Liam's voice sounded shot to pieces on the live footage I'd seen of them, and I just assumed the music was just as poor.
But I was wrong! Yes! I admit it! I liked the new single, Shock of the Lightning, so gave DBTT a go on YouTube and was pleasantly surprised by what I was hearing, so I finally bought the album last week and haven't looked back.
Honestly, people, this album is A RETURN TO FORM. I say that in capitals because it's as cliched as it is true. The songs are tight, they sound like they're enjoying themselves again, the contributions from Liam, Gme and Andy add new depth to the music... and the only track I don't really care for is the most Oasis-sounding on there, Let There Be Love.
The music here is as honest reflection of where Liam and Noel are at now as any of their previous albums ( DM - mean, lean and keen; MG - confident, celebratory; BHN - arrogant, out of touch; SOTSOG - reflective, sober; HC - reborn, trying to move on), and that my friends is middle age.
They'll never produce another album like Definitely Maybe again, because they're no longer young, skint or living for the stars to shine anymore. Nor will they create another Morning Glory because you get the impression Liam and Noel have tired of trying to be The Biggest Band In The World anymore, and just want to make good music again.
They're acting their age, and have finally escaped the straightjacket of Beatledom, adding a more acoustic edge to their songs on DBTT, perhaps recognising that Liam has effectively had to shout through gigs for many years, and realising that sound of The La's wouldn't be a bad basis for future records.
But anyway, enough waffle. This is a good album, and proof (in my case) that you never forget your first love. After 8 years of indifference, I'm actually really looking forward to the new record.
But as for this record, listen without prejudice, appreciate for what it is (not what it isn't) and don't believe the lies.