Live Review: Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds

30 March 2016 | 2:57 pm | Bryget Chrisfield

"Did you pay to get in, or did you just magic yourself to the front row? If you paid to get in, you're a shit magician."

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Noel Gallagher saunters on stage clad in a dark-hued polo and jeans and straps on his cherry-red Gibson.

The visuals on the back screen during Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds' opener Everybody's On The Run are a bit karaoke, but we can't really imagine Gallagher gives a flying fuck about any of that stuff. Crowd members shout out, "NOOOOOEEELL!" and we can detect many British accents in the house. The choruses of In The Heat Of The Moment feature a dapper brass trio in lieu of "na-na-na-na" backing vocals. Gallagher's voice is flawless. And when he eventually speaks, every word matters. A punter yells out a request: "LIVE FOREVER!" Gallagher turns to him. "Have I ever played it before? Why?" Oasis fan: "Because I'm your biggest fan." Gallagher: "You're not even my tallest fan let alone my biggest fan." He then spots and points out Sandra who he reveals has followed him around on "this entire world tour". When bubbles float up from the front section, we chuckle and await Gallagher's reaction. Champagne Supernova - "Where were you while WE were gettin' high?" - what a tune! It's a reminder of how adept Gallagher is at penning power ballads as well as rocking tracks, which is something he's carried on with Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds' material.

And then Gallagher notices the bubbles. "So you bought a fookin' boobble machine 'ere? You're a fookin' magician? Well why don't you make the fookin' boobbles disappear then?" (He's fookin' hilarious!) Gallagher's lyrics have also always been amazing and still are, as demonstrated at The Dying Of The Light's close ("And there'd be no time for getting old when we were young").

"Thanks for making the boobbles disappear," Gallagher observes. "Did you pay to get in, or did you just magic yourself to the front row? If you paid to get in, you're a shit magician." The Mexican — one of the rockier tunes from the Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds catalogue — is a right ball-tearer with ample cowbell, but there's barely any movement in the stands, which is a shame. Even the GA section is immobile. Before Oasis' The Masterplan, Gallagher warns us this is the band's "last song", before warning us we'd better cheer loud enough to bring them back for an encore. We certainly earn our encore and are rewarded with that Oasis masterpiece Wonderwall, which Gallagher wisely chooses to put his own vocal stamp on (it's just a bit annoying for our sing along accuracy is all). AKA... What A Life! represents Gallagher's current band incarnation and there's finally some random units pogoing in GA. Gallagher tells us this is their "last song, I'm afraid" and the keys intro to Don't Look Back In Anger (which has always reminded us of John Lennon's Imagine) takes all the Oasis fans in the house to sing along heaven. The amount of outstretched arms for the first, "And SOOOOooooo..." is so far beyond any reaction to any song all night. Then we all stand. Even in the stands. It's a bleedin' miracle!

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And the aforementioned heckler dare not complain, since Gallagher slots ten Oasis songs into tonight's 20-song strong setlist. Team Noel. Always.