Ride’s Andy Bell: ‘Noel Gallagher is really underrated as a lead guitar player’

Former Oasis bass player pays tribute to his one-time band mate

Ride’s Andy Bell has said that he believes Noel Gallagher is underrated as a guitarist, arguing that the former Oasis songwriter laid the foundations for a style that many musicians use today.

Bell joined Oasis in 1999 as a replacement for original bassist Paul ‘Guigsy’ McGuigan and is now back with his own band Ride following a reunion earlier this year.

Speaking to Music Radar, Bell was asked about his time with the band and also how his life was affected by hearing them when he was still making music with Ride in the ’90s.

“I just want to say that I think Noel’s really underrated as a lead guitar player,” Bell said, “His playing is like a John Squire-y thing, but there’s a lot more muscle behind it. He kind of trademarked his own style, which has become something that everyone uses now – that massively overdriven sound with quite a lot of delay on it.”

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Bell also said that the sound Oasis emerged with on their early singles showed Ride that you didn’t have to make clean-sounding music in order to get on the radio:

“Oasis definitely did change my life when I first heard them! They were like a breath of fresh air. To put it into context, Ride were working on the third album, ‘Carnival of Light’, and we were taking a bit of a break. We were starting to get a bit frayed at the edges and we were starting to pull in different directions musically, too. We were really shooting for a kind of West Coast Byrds-y California sound mixed with a little bit of Led Zeppelin and a little bit of classic rock,” he remembered.

“I think we were also subconsciously trying to make a cleaner record, because we’d stopped getting played on the radio… but then along comes Oasis sounding like The Jesus and Mary Chain meets the Sex Pistols and just completely blew everything out of the water!”

Ride are currently touring the UK, with their live set seeing the band play their debut album ‘Nowhere’ in full for the first time. Their next gig is in London on Wednesday night (October 14).

‘Nowhere’, released on Creation Records in October 1990, is widely cited as a classic of the shoegaze genre. It reached Number 11 in the UK charts first time around, and was eventually classified silver in the UK.

‘Nowhere’ will be reissued on November 6. The new version will feature a DVD recorded at a 1991 concert at the Town & Country Club in London (now The Forum). It will be presented in a hardback cardboard case with a canvas-style cover, and include a 36-page booklet full of unseen photos and new sleeve notes written by Bell, compiled using the help of Ride fans via a Twitter Q&A.

Ride play the following live dates:

London O2 Academy Brixton (October 14)
Liverpool O2 Academy (15)
Bristol Anson Rooms (17)
Newcastle O2 Academy (18)
Edinburgh Corn Exchange (19)
Nottingham Rock City (21)
Birmingham Institute (22)

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