Review: Beady Eye, O2 Academy

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OASIS are dead and gone, but for a jam-packed, sold-out Sheffield Academy crowd, their spirit lives on in Liam Gallagher’s Beady Eye.

Way before he appears on stage, the audience is chanting: “Liam, Liam, Liam!” The former die-hard Oasis fans, mostly men in their 30s and 40s, don’t seem to miss Liam’s older brother Noel, Oasis’ chief songwriter who walked out on the band in August 2009. The remaining band members – Liam, guitarists Gem Archer and Andy Bell, and stand-in drummer Chris Sharrock – reformed as Beady Eye, sending debut album Different Gear, Still Speeding to number three in the UK charts.

Despite coming straight out of two months of relentless touring in Japan, Europe and South America, Liam snarls, sneers and swaggers across the Sheffield stage with all the energy of the Britpop era, looking like he might headbutt the microphone at any moment.

He belts out hits The Roller, Millionnaire and Bring The Light, the fanatic crowd singing back every word. The energy and the manic adoring audience are there; if you squint at the stage, it almost could be Oasis.

But what made Oasis so special was their anthems – Wonderwall, Champagne Supernova, Roll With It and the rest. There are some good tunes here, but measuring Beady Eye on that scale, this is a pale imitation.

Ben Spencer