First and foremost, Beady Eye's debut album "Different Gear, Still Speeding" is an homage and an evolution of the sounds of English rock and roll that have explicitly influenced frontman Liam Gallagher. While I was surprised to hear it as explicitly as it comes across on this album, I think it really works. As weird as it sounds to say this in 2011, if you love the Beatles, you have to give this album a listen.
Former Oasis frontman Liam Gallagher and the rest of the most recent iteration of Oasis announced in 2009 that they were separating from Noel Gallagher. After a number of tumultuous years between the brothers (Noel and Liam), it surprised few that this would happen eventually.
Also not surprising is the evolution of the sound of Liam Gallagher's music. Although Liam Gallagher has consistently acknowledged the influence of the Beatles in his music, it has never been more readily apparent than it is in this album. Pick any track on this album and the influence is unmistakable. Personally, I could hear it in Oasis' albums from the 90's. But it's right up front here, and they do nothing to allay that perception in the look, sound and feel of the band's image.
For example, take a look at this screenshot from the front page of their website. I know that it comes straight from a Beatles or Stones photo, but I just can't place it. If it doesn't, then they've accomplished the feat of creating memories that don't exist. Your help in ID'ing this memory for me would be much appreciated.
On to the music: There are any number of great tracks on this album, but let's start with the first single, "The Roller."
I'll take you somewhere you never knew you'd been
I'll give you something you never knew you'd feel
The only thing is everything is really tonight, tonight, tonight
Just call me the roller
I'll squeeze and unfold ya
Call me the roller
I just go to show ya
Just look at Liam Gallagher in this video and tell me he's not channelling John Lennon.
It's a cool song and a great video.
One last note about the Beatles sound on this album. Gallagher embraces the comparison and shows that he's confident in his ability to stand up to it in a song unapologetically titled "Beatles and Stones". How many bands do you think could get away with a lyric like this:
I’m gonna stand the test of time
Like Beatles and Stones
I’m on my way home,
just get back to what’s mine
And when I get home, well I’ll be alright
What’s that you say?
Get out the way!
Beyond the "English sound", there are some exceptionally strong rockers on this album. The song "Four Letter Word" has a thoroughly modern musical drive to it. Interestingly enough though, the look of the video is all The Who with the Mod look.
So, I've gone on and on about comparisons to the Beatles. Is there room for a "New" Beatles in the rock world. My answer is yes. Thus sound and the feel of this music sounds fresh. If anything, it rekindles my appreciation of the great legacy that Beady Eye has inherited and moves forward on this album. Thanks, Beady Eye. Now I think I'm going to go listen to a little John Lennon before I go to sleep.