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Newcastle Metro Radio Arena
23rd February 2012
It's good to be free...
by wendavey on 6th March 2013 14:25
I have to confess to a feeling of trepidation ahead of Noel Gallagher's Newcastle show. This was mainly due to a worry as to whether Gallagher Sr. could carry a whole show vocally by himself. I'd heard a couple of live appearances on TV that didn't impress too much and the odd report from gig-going friends was that they'd felt his voice was weak at the shows they'd attended.
So it was with a mixture of relief and joy that last night's Metro Radio Arena gig proved these concerns were unjustified. The arena was jumping from the moment the opening chords of '(It’s Good) To Be Free' were played, an action that signalled the inevitable, moronic, launching of pints into the air. A second, lesser known Oasis song, 'Mucky Fingers',was followed by a string of tracks from his solo album - 'Everybody's on the Run', 'Dream On', 'If I Had a Gun', 'The Good Rebel', and 'The Death of You and Me' before he introduced a new song 'Freaky Teeth'.
As you would expect, most of the solo album was played and why not - several of the songs on there are easily as good as the best Oasis material - but we did get several Oasis classics including 'Whatever', 'Half The World Way', 'Supersonic' (stripped to its bare-bones with Noel on acoustic guitar), 'Little By Little', 'Talk Tonight', 'The Importance of Being Idle' and a barnstorming version of 'Don't Look Back In Anger' at the end of the evening. Noel wisely avoided the Oasis material that Liam had kind of made his own.
The choir and the three piece brass section (trombone, trumpet and sax) helped fill out the sound and add some nice touches to several songs, and augmented the band - David McDonnell (guitar), Russell Pritchard (bass), Jeremy Stacey (drums) and Mikey Rowe (keyboards) very well. The stage lighting and video screen set up was effective too.
So, all in all a mighty fine show and proof (if it was ever needed) that while Liam may have cornered the market in charisma and swagger as far as vocalists go, Noel still has what it takes to write great anthemic songs.
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