In the 90s, Oasis were one of the most astronomically gigantic bands to come rolling out of the land of tea and crumpets. This was, in part, because the brothers Gallagher insisted on acting like the most astronomically gigantic dicks on the face of the planet. Do you need an example? Here's some proof of their abusive assholery, as captured in his brother Paul's 1998 primer, Brothers, From Childhood to Oasis: The Real Story.
In 1993, Oasis opened for Liz Phair in Manchester. The Gallagher brothers invaded her dressing room, drank all her beer, and ate all her food. When Phair finally came in to scream at them, one of their friends asked her to "get her tits out for the lads." She stormed off, and the next day the Gallaghers' mugs were plastered all over the NME's gossip section.
Here's the thing: as scathing as that is, that's technically Oasis' side of the story. For a nice counterpart, read Amy Raphael's Grrls: Viva Rock Divas, which collects a bunch of as-told-tos from Courtney Love, Kim Gordon, and (you guessed it) Liz Phair. In Phair's account of the evening, she was at a show one night and a roving pack of douchebags fucked up her green room. She talks about how she felt belittled by their sexist, rude behavior. She goes on a rant about it and I found myself nodding in agreement. I put two and two together and realized the nothing burger Manchester band she was describing was… Oasis.
Here's the thing: Someone like me is not supposed to be an Oasis fan. They are, however, one of my all-time favorite bands. So you can imagine how happy I was when I opened up this article in the Sun today to find a quote from my beloved:
“I accept I am a genius, just like God.” The legendary 45-year-old asshole from Manchester said he'd walk up to the pearly gates and tell God, “‘You’ve heard Don’t Look Back In Anger?’, and they’d say, ‘Of course.’ I’d say, ‘Look it’s me, let us in. I can play you a tune. I robbed some stuff, I took a lot of drugs, but I’m all right’.”
As I said before, someone like me is not supposed to like Oasis. I'm a musician, a free thinker, and a feminist. Oasis is a troop of notorious assholes and pigs, insufferable jocks obsessed with Manchester football. They wanted to be the biggest band in the world and, in their minds, they did it - I remember once listening to an interview with Liam where he said that band that says they don’t want to be as big as The Beatles is full of shit. Oasis also likes to insult other musicians very publicly. Just today Liam Gallagher took a stab at Mumford & Sons. He called them wankers or something.
When Noel penned a list of his favorite bands of all time and, it was, unsurprisingly, a bunch of bands fronted by white men. He admitted that he wasn't allowing women onto the list. Peter Green from Fleetwood Mac was on there, but not the rest of the group. If some guy said this to me at a bar, we’d probably end up getting in a long, drunken debate about gender politics and, if he didn’t listen to what I was saying, I’d walk away annoyed. But with Oasis, I accept it and turn up “Half The World Away” that much louder.
I love them. I don't even care.
It's so easy to hate dicks. Oasis are dicks. That's why most people hate Oasis. They paint a very broad target. This is what makes me like them even more. I like the pompous attitudes because sometimes it makes sense (does no one remember the Noel and Jay-Z media frenzy?)
I like the fighting. I like the constant hating and ridiculous swagger. It’s so transparent. It makes me think that perhaps Liam and Noel are two of the most insecure people in the world: iron on the outside, crumbling, soft, chewable candy goop on the inside.
Everyone who acts like this has been, of course, insecure from a young age. Remember Sociology 101: children internalize negative messages. Tell a kid he's bad enough times and he'll start acting bad. I guess I can look past Oasis’s blatant sexism because deep down I know they are two damaged little Manchester boys who just need a little love. Maybe that’s why they wanted to be the most famous band in England and didn't stop until they were. The disciplined side of my brain that craves recognition has to admire that kind of determination, even if they are total fucking assholes.
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