16 years ago, almost to the day, Oasis toyed with the implode button when they released their third studio album Be Here Now.
The album was preceded by a single that showed no warning signs of this at all. D’You Know What I Mean had a beefed up sound – its cock-sure delivery saw it rocket to Number One in the Singles Chart. The album sold in huge initial quantities.
The day before the album came out the BBC ran a near 40 minute documentary on the making of the album – practically a free advert. Unprecedented.
Be Here Now is not a terrible album – far from it. The problem with the album is that unlike every Oasis previous release, be that single, B-Side or album – it does not expand their sound. It’s more of the same and it begins to drag the band down. Someone somewhere mumbled ‘Status Quo’ and the damage was done.
As Oasis declined they dragged the BritPop explosion down with them. Future albums by Pulp and Blur, for example, were a lot more introspective and had less ‘let’s take on the world’ qualities. Other bands drifted away from the spotlight.
Oasis followed the album with, as far as I’m concerned, a better album, Standing On The Shoulder Of Giants. That album is brushed over these days but has some great songs and a rocking overall vibe.
Had Oasis called it a day after there 2nd album they would be reflected on more like The Stone Roses or even The Sex Pistols. The soap opera ran too far and arguably tainted a potential legacy.
Still a great band though…