TORONTO - Even Oasis guitarist-singer Noel Gallagher is impressed at the wealth of British rock bands in T.O. this week.
Oasis played the Air Canada Centre on Monday night with the Arctic Monkeys opening. The Arctic Monkeys headlined their own show at the Phoenix last night. And ex-Verve frontman Richard Ashcroft opens for Coldplay at the ACC tonight and tomorrow night.
"Oh, well, fuckin' hell, good week for Toronto, eh?" Gallagher told the Sun during a Canadian newspaper exclusive interview on Monday night at the ACC. "It doesn't really get any better than that, does it?"Gallagher says this particular confluence of artists would never happen in his native country.
"Promoters wouldn't put Coldplay and Oasis in the same city in the same week. I'm sure the bands wouldn't give a f--k. I'm sure they'd (sell) but I'm not sure whether (promoters) would be prepared to take the risk of whether they would or not."
Gallagher said he was unable to stick around Toronto to see any of the gigs by his fellow British rock stars as Oasis was flying down to Milwaukee last night for a gig as they finish off their last two weeks of a world tour that began in March 2005.
Gallagher, who doesn't write on the road and is planning on taking the summer off, doesn't expect the band to be back in the studio until at least the fall with "no serious work" until next year.
"I don't sit down and write words 'cause I think that's not a very noble thing to do on the road," he said. "I think on the road, you should drink and f--kin' live the life. Working and touring doesn't mix for me. I'll write when I get home."
Oasis last album, Don't Believe The Truth, was largely seen as a return to form with Gallagher sharing more songwriting duties than ever before with brother-singer Liam and other members of the band. But Gallagher was wary of the theory that increased competition will only make his songwriting better the next time out.
"I don't know. Every time we have a successful album, we always f--k the next one up," he only half-joked.
More seriously, Noel said he doesn't consider Liam a songwriting competitor nor vice-versa.
"Liam doesn't look at it like that either," he said. "It's not a case of competition really. I couldn't write a song called The Meaning Of Soul, lyrics like that, 'cause I'm almost 20 years into being a songwriter. Liam couldn't write a song like The Importance Of Being Idle, 'cause it's just not in him yet. Liam's songwriting is very youthful. Like Love Like A Bomb and The Meaning Of Soul is kind of very youthful songwriting. I've had that with Rock 'N' Roll Star from a long, long, long time ago."
Ultimately, Gallagher said, their sound will never change drastically from record to record.
"We're really pleased with what we sound like," he said. "We're really pleased with what we are. The identity we've carved out over the best part of 15 years. That's not something that we're about to toss up in the air and become a space-reggae f--kin' band, because I'm not just into that. I don't want to challenge my audience because they're friends of mine. I don't want to be like f--kin' saying to them, 'Well, I'm on a musical journey come along if you want but it might go a bit jazzy.' It's like we make Oasis music man and you all know what it sounds like."
Judging from Oasis' longevity, Gallagher may be on to something.
"The songs are not tied to any particular era or the lyrics don't deal with any ... you know we've never had our George Bush era," he said. "Or our 'Let's save the world, famine-in-Africa, album,' or our weirdy-beardy album. The songs are timeless. The lyrics, they're either profound or it's nonsense. That always lasts forever."
St. Paddy's Day toasts started at 'half-nine that morning' for Liam
Liam Gallagher gave whole new meaning to the term "Top Of The Morning" this past St. Patrick's Day.
Brother Noel Gallagher told the Sun in a Canadian newspaper exclusive this week in Toronto that his sibling hit the green beer early that day in New York City.
"I've got to say that Liam did it for all of us," said Gallagher. "I bumped into him in Soho, it would have been about mid-day and he'd been drinking since half-nine that morning. I was with my girlfriend so we were kind of furniture shopping 'cause we're moving house (in London) but I'm glad Liam was doing it for the lads."
When it's suggested that Noel, 38, has finally grown up, he responds: "I find drinking at half-nine in the morning is a bit excessive. I can kind of start drinking at half-nine at night, do you know what I mean?, and I can kind of go on drinking til half-nine in the morning. I wouldn't start at half-nine in the morning. I'd be in bed by mid-day."
Unbelievably, Gallagher experienced his first-ever St. Patrick's Day in The Big Apple.
"They do take it very seriously don't they?" said Gallagher. "I've seen Chinese people with green bowler hats on and I'm not sure the Chinese people knew what the f--k was going on, to be honest. To see them walking around the streets, as if someone's just stuck this green bowler hat on them (and said) 'Smile!'"
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