Earlier this month Liam Gallagher released his debut solo album, As You Were, after months of teasing and build up. The first single from the album, ‘Wall of Glass’, was released in May, and peaked at number 21 in the charts on its first week of release. This, however, was not a sign of things to come as, after the album’s official full release, it became the ninth fastest selling album this decade.
It’s not surprising; As You Were is full of soulful, thought-provoking ballads, offset by a few rockier pieces thrown in to induce that nostalgia for early noughties Britpop. The opening song ‘Wall of Glass’ is punchy, and introduces a slightly fresher, more invigorating sound than Oasis’ later tunes. ‘For What It’s Worth’ is easily some of Liam Gallagher’s best work, despite feeling somewhat familiar. The fervent notes of the chorus are reminiscent of Oasis’ legendary ‘Wonderwall’, which is easily the band’s most well-known song.
Gallagher has stated in an interview with Billboard that he’s “trying to recapture that sound” and For What It’s Worth makes that apparent without being a carbon copy of Oasis’ glory days. However, whilst the songs themselves may be pleasing, the lyrics are typically uninspiring. The bohemian ‘Chinatown’ has a beautiful melody, with a powerful, guitar-led rhythm. However, the lyrics are a frustrating angle on the current political climate that the catchy tune is almost definitely wasted on: “What’s it to be free man? What’s a European? Me I just believe in the sun.” The music may have developed, but Liam Gallagher’s lyrical genius has yet to come out. All in all, it’s an enjoyable album reminiscent of Gallagher’s earlier sound, while still bringing something new to the table. Just don’t listen too closely to the lyrics.