Twenty five years ago today, a group of lads from Manchester released what would go on to be one the defining records of the century. Oasis were born, and everybody wanted to know about it.
A new sound, a new energy, a new attitude. Oasis became the band that everyone wanted to be in, and it all started with Definitely, Maybe. It became the fastest selling UK album of all time when it was released on 29th August 1994, catapulting the group of lads into musical nirvana.
Having caught the attention of Alan McGee, head of Creation Records, at a tiny gig in a pokey little pub in Glasgow, he approached the band after their four-song set and signed them on the spot.
Noel was about 27 and was writing rock anthems for fun; Live Forever, Supersonic, Rock’n’Roll Star all off one album! Liam was a 22 year old gobbey young adult, willing to pretty much do or say anything to get a reaction.
They had the songs, they had the frontman and they had the deal. But recording the songs was proving a major issue.
From humble musical beginnings, timing was not a strong suit, particularly for the drummer. Noel became so frustrated with his fellow band members, he actually re-recorded all the bass parts afterwards, so bassist Paul McGuigan doesn’t actually play anything on the whole album!
With Bring It On Down set to be the first single, the band were busy working away to finish the recording. But several attempts was starting to show the band that something wasn’t working.
As the sessions at both Monnow Valley Studios, near Monmouth, and Sawmills Studios, Cornwall, became increasingly frantic and the results continued to disappoint, they took a quick break.
So when the band members went to grab a Chinese from down the road, Noel picked up his guitar and wrote Supersonic there and then. As if it dropped from the sky, Oasis’ first single was born.
Then follows Shakermaker and Live Forever, and the album was well on it’s way.
Combined with the ever increasing headlines of the band’s antics, such as being thrown off a ferry and barred from Holland, it wasn’t just the music that was spurring on Oasis. Labelled as the new bad boys of rock and roll, it was as if punk has reincarnated in the form of some lads from Manchester.
Liam the arrogant frontman, Noel the more reserved brains, the two vying to be the centre of the band, it was the sibling friction and endless drama that made them such an exciting prospect to follow.
When Definitely, Maybe was released, it shifted 86,000 units in the first week alone, going on to sell 15m worldwide. It was like holding a flame to a bag of matches. They simply took off.
Fast forward the clock 25 years, and unsurprisingly, that same sibling friction eventually split Oasis right down the middle. But the time they were together saw them become one of the biggest British bands since The Beatles, and the Gallagher name will be forever etched in rock and roll history. So Noel was right, they will live forever after all!
When you pop on Live Forever or Supersonic in 2019, it still sounds just as brilliant as it did back in 1994. An album that has truly stood the test of time, and HEKKTA are sure it will still be as relevant in another 25 years.
To celebrate the 25 years of the album, there is currently an exhibition on at the h Club Gallery in London, featuring the works of British photographer Michael Spencer Jones, who shadowed the Manchester band from their pre-fame days. Get yourself down!