20-track set includes 'Champagne Supernova' and 'Don't Look Back in Anger'
Noel Gallagher linked past and present during a 90 minute gig at Dublin’s 3Arena last night (March 4).
Ireland’s largest indoor music venue saw Gallagher and his High Flying Birds playing a near-identical set list as they had 24-hours earlier at Belfast’s Odyssey Arena, mixing a handful of early Oasis numbers with tracks from the singer and guitarist’s two solo albums.
Support came from Black Rivers, who performed a number of songs taken from their recently released self-titled debut LP, including ‘The Forest’ and ‘The Ship’. While the crowd remained mostly static throughout, they did perk up slightly when the band – which consists of former Doves members Jez and Andy Williams – played two tracks originally recorded by their previous group, ‘Rise’ and ‘Black and White Town’.
“Let’s cheer up with ‘Black and White Town’, a good song,” quipped Jez in response to the rather muted crowd. But they were only here to see one man, and directly following the Black Rivers’ set, Judy Henske’s 1963 track ‘High Flying Bird’ was played into the venue as though to signal Noel and his band’s impending arrival.
Arriving onstage at 9pm with his band and 22 members of the Crouch End Festival Chorus choir, who sat directly behind the group facing the crowd, Gallagher opened with two tracks from first solo record ‘Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds’. ‘(Stranded On) The Wrong Beach’ and ‘Everybody’s on the Run’ were followed by the first Oasis track of the night, a more acoustic version of ‘Definitely Maybe’-era B-side ‘Fade Away’ – the track’s wistful tone punctuated here by a series of nostalgic photographs that were projected behind the group.
“What about you Dublin?” Gallagher asked the packed venue. “I don’t say this many places, but it’s truly great to be back. Thank you very much.”
Three tracks from new album ‘Chasing Yesterday’ followed as the band played ‘In the Heat of the Moment’, ‘Lock All the Doors’ and ‘Riverman’. Gallagher dedicated ‘Lock All The Doors’ to “my former right-hand man Bonehead who’s out there somewhere” – a nod to Oasis founding member Paul Arthurs – and introduced a three-piece brass section for ‘Riverman’.
“This song contains a saxophone solo. Do not be alarmed,” he joked.
Two more Noel solo numbers followed before the crowd were invited to sing along to Oasis single ‘Champagne Supernova’, which they happily did. “I started playing this tune one day in rehearsals and everybody joined in,” revealed Gallagher before opening the track on his acoustic guitar. The singer chose to stay quiet during sections of the song to take in the crowd’s own rendition.
While the choir departed the stage after ‘Champagne Supernova’ (one of only two tracks they’d actually been deployed on), the brass section returned for ‘Dream On’, and there was an amusing moment when an assistant attempted to hand Gallagher the wrong guitar before ‘The Dying Of The Light’. “You just can’t get the staff,” he laughed.
Noel later played back-to-back Oasis tracks – a rocking version of ‘Shout It Out Loud’ and ‘Digsy’s Dinner’ – before closing with ‘AKA… What a Life!’.
The band re-emerged, however, for a four track encore. ‘AKA… Broken Arrow’ was followed by a stripped down version of ‘Don’t Look Back In Anger’, which sparked another massive sing-along between band, crowd and the choir, who had also returned to the stage. ‘Ballad of the Mighty I’ and Oasis anthem ‘The Masterplan’, backed by brass section and choir, closed the show.
Although ‘Chasing Yesterday’ was only released on Monday, earlier this week it was reported that Gallagher was already halfway through making his third solo record.
Noel Gallagher played:
‘(Stranded On) The Wrong Beach’
‘Everybody’s on the Run’
‘In the Heat of the Moment’
‘Lock All the Doors’
‘The Death of You and Me’
‘You Know We Can’t Go Back’
‘The Dying Of The Light’
‘Shout It Out Loud’
‘If I Had a Gun… ‘
‘AKA… What a Life!’
‘AKA… Broken Arrow’
‘Don’t Look Back in Anger’
‘Ballad of the Mighty I’