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Latitude 2018

Liam Gallagher, BBC Music Stage, Latitude

Genre: Live Music, Music

Venue: Latitude 2018


Low Down

This is the “secret gig” for Latitude 2018.


The “secret” act (secret if you can’t spot an hour-long gap in a major stage’s schedule, or read Twitter) is Liam Gallagher. He seems to have enough contacts in his old band to be able to just play their old songs, which is nice.


I haven’t seen Oasis since I was in year 9. They hadn’t even released their second album then. It’s nice that all the kiddies here seem to recognise the songs.


To be fair (and I’m aware that I’m not the first one to say this) Liam really was born to be on stage. He still does the same hands-behind-his-back stance that he did way back in 1993. He still wears paedo sunglasses. He still spits and sneers at the mic and the crowd. His lips are still curled and snarled unnaturally. He still shakes his maracas menacingly. Most impressively though, he’s still wearing a coat in 30+-degree heat, in what can only be described as a heroic act of brand-maintenance over common sense.


He’s older than me. I bet he dyes his hair.


Like James last night, it’s impressive how much the new material sounds like old Oasis. I wonder if Liam is a bit more than a very self-assured hooligan. Maybe he was paying attention all that time, and now he can do the same trick as his brother pretty much as well. Or maybe he was more involved all along?


Other people in this tent seem to know these new solo songs, which is nice for them. Given that I only get my pop culture through 6Music or my (very refined) YouTube algorithms, I’ve never been exposed to them. But, like I said, they sound like Oasis, which is more than can be said for his brother!


But then, as he only plays two or three of his own tracks, and then settles back into early Oasis numbers, it really makes naff-all difference. Everyone sings along joyously (and accurately) to songs from twenty-plus years ago. It’s lovely! I hope James are watching this and paying attention!


We all make the strings sounds for Whatever, after he explains he doesn’t have any. I’d be very unlikely to put on Supersonic on a Saturday afternoon, but this is absolutely brilliant fun!


Every year I’ve wondered what would really get a Latitude crowd going. It turns out that the secret (like every campfire singalong ever since 1995) is to get everyone to sing Wonderwall and Live Forever. He even pares all the instrumentation back so it’s just an acoustic guitar, him, and us. And it just works.


Just like last year, my gig of the festival is a complete surprise, not because I think this is artistically brilliant, but because it’s the crowd that make a show really special, and this was simply the happiest I’ve seen a festival crowd in years. Possibly ever.


This was not Liam Gallagher at all. This was an early-Oasis singalong featuring the lead singer of Oasis. In my mind there is nothing particularly “cool” about that, BUT: There was absolutely nothing ironic whatsoever about the fun and the love in that tent.

Who knew that was what I wanted?! Well, professional rock-‘n’-roll star Liam Gallagher, that’s who! Clever chap. I really hope that was as fun for him as it was for us!


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