Review Summary: An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind
Even if you do live on a cave on mars with your fingers in your ear (though I hear it’s lovely this time of year), you’ll probably be aware that Mr. Liam Gallagher is something of an incendiary type.
It might be for show, it might be that he actually is just a massive dickhead; but whether it is for trying or otherwise, he really does get under people’s skin. Even as Oasis tried and repeatedly failed to ‘break’ America (you never hear that phrase anymore, do you?), our fair isle’s cousins still roll their eyes to this day at the mention of his name. A man of Liam’s standing and temperament is always setting himself up for a critical mauling, so any release he features on can pivot on that age old cliché; he can talk the talk, but can he walk the walk?
The two biggest problems with BE
are thus; the energy that made their first LP a surprisingly decent effort has been removed completely, and Liam’s lyrics have plumbed to new, previously unassailable depths of self-parody.
Take, for example, the opening couplet of “Second Bite Of The Apple”: “Shake my tree, where’s the apple for me?/Tickle my feet with the NME.” This is quickly followed by the slightly less bizarre but no less atrocious “No point laughing if you don’t know why/I phone my love just to hear her smile.”
It’s unadulterated nonsense, and the fact it’s played straight with that faint asthmatic wheeze Liam has picked up in recent years makes it a lot more jarring. Given that he has spent a good portion of the past twenty years positioning himself as Mr. Big Mouth, it’s simply disappointing to hear Liam pen rhyme after rhyme for its own sake. What kind of album did he expect to make? It might still be better than Drake. My favourite kind of fish is hake.
The music (provided, lest we forget, by proclaimed British indie stalwarts) is for the most part uninspiring. “Soul Love” plods like a dozy beast before melting into a wholly unnecessary ambient fade-out. The dreadful “Don’t Brother Me” does the same thing but with 25% extra tacked on to the end. “Ballroom Figured” somehow offers even less than the rest of the songs put together.
OK. Something positive. Tracks like “Face The Crowd” and “I’m Just Saying” (probably the best song here) are perfect for the live setting; pretty much the scenario Beady Eye are built for. The album’s closer, “Start Anew”, by virtue of its name offers some form of redemption. Alas, it isn’t to be. The only thing you’ll find yourself saying is “Take ya own advice, mate.”
Nobody could have been expecting ground-breaking stuff, but at least put *some* effort in.