THE FRIDAY FIVE – 26.5.2017

1. Muse – Dig Deep
2. Matt Maltese – As The World Caves In
3. Royal Blood – Lights Out
4. Rory Lavelle – Sonny
5. George Ezra – Blame It On Me

On Monday, is Noel Gallagher’s 50th birthday. I know it’s purely coincidental, but we can pretend that a national holiday has been declared in honour of Noel Gallagher turning 50.

How else will this blog celebrate? With a a five song chart.

Seeing as i’m in a good mood, i’ll give you two.

FIVE NOEL GALLAGHER SUNG OASIS SONGS

1. She Is Love
2. Where Did It All Go Wrong?
3. Don’t Look Back In Anger
4. The Masterplan
5. Angel Chil

FIVE NOEL GALLAGHER SOLO SONGS

1. AKA …….. What A Life
2. In The Heat Of The Moment
3. You Know We Can’t Go Back
4. Ballad Of The Mighty I
5. I Wanna Live In A Dream (In My Record Machine)

Noel Gallagher at Titanic Belfast 2016

Noel Gallagher at The Odyssey 2015

Noel Gallagher at Custom House Square 2012

Noel Gallagher at The Odyssey 2012

Ryan Adams update. Still looking for a ticket for his Ulster Hall gig in September.

THE SOUND OF 2016 : 1-25

And here we are, what you’ve been waiting for, to find out the best song of 2016. Not long to go until it is revealed. Are you ready? Are you ready?

Oh ok, I’ll shut up, here’s the Top 25.

1. The Strumbellas – Spirits
2. James – Nothing But Love
3. Iggy Pop – Gardenia
4. The Courteeners – No One Will Ever Replace Us
5. Christine and the Queens – Tilted
6. The Temper Trap – Fall Together
7. Chvrches ft Hayley Williams – Bury It
8. Clean Cut Kid – We Used To Be In Love
9. Sia – The Greatest
10. Oasis – D’You Know What I Mean? (NG’s 2016 Rethink)
11. Travis – Animals
12. Stone Roses – All For One
13. Bastille – Good Grief
14. Travis – Magnificent Time
15. Aurora – Conquerer
16. Biffy Clyro – Howl
17. Bastille – Send Them Off
18. The Lumineers – Ophelia
19. Grimes – California
20. Travis – 3 Miles High
21. Two Door Cinema Club – Are We Ready? (Wreck)
22. Blossoms – Getaway
23. KT Tunstall – Maybe It’s A Good Thing
24. Rose Elinor Dougall – Stellular
25. Clean Cut Kid – Make Believe

Thank you for your support over the past year and I’ll hope to bring you more Friday Fives and pointless themed charts throughout 2017.

Congratulations to The Strumbellas, who join Kasabian, Feist, Sons and Daughters, Little Boots, Marina and the Diamonds, Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, Taylor Swift, Haim, Jamie T and Blossoms in the Hall Of Fame.

Hopefully, over the past four weeks, i’ve helped you discover some songs you’ve never heard before.

If you haven’t heard the winning song, here it is ……

Want to get excited for music in 2017? Here’s four words for you – Liam. Gallagher. Solo. Album.

2016 IN PICTURES – AUGUST

August began for me with a trip to Fermanagh to see Linfield take on Ballinamallard United in the opening game of the Irish League season.

The following day, I ventured to Cupar Way to check out the Peace Wall in Belfast, something I do every six months to have a look at the Street Art.

After that, came a triple whammy if Irish League matches, taking in Linfield’s games against Coleraine, Crusaders and Glenavon.

That was then followed by a triple whammy of concerts – Madness and Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds at Belsonic, then Red Hot Chili Peppers at Vital.

The month ended with a trip to Windsor Park to see Linfield take on Dungannon Swifts.

Ballinamallard United v Linfield

Belfast Peace Wall

Belfast Peace Wall Photo Album

Linfield v Coleraine

Crusaders v Linfield

Linfield v Glenavon

Madness live at Titanic Belfast

Madness live at Titanic Belfast Photo Album

Catfish and the Bottlemen Photo Album

Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds live at Titanic Belfast

Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds live at Titanic Belfast Photo Album

Red Hot Chili Peppers live at Boucher Road Playing Fields

Red Hot Chili Peppers live at Boucher Road Playing Fields Photo Album

Linfield v Dungannon Swifts

THE SOUND OF 2016 : 76-100

Well, 2016 is almost over and what a year of music it has been. Bowie died, Prince died, and Phil Collins announced a comeback. It hasn’t been all bad. There were some songs I liked, and I’ve put them into a chart.

There’s nothing scientific to it, I just cut and pasted Friday Fives and spent half an hour trying to put them into an order based on what I liked the most over the past year.

You may notice a few rerecordings and previously unreleased versions of songs that have already been released. Well, my chart, my rules.

So, who will join the list of previous winners? You’ll have to wait a few weeks to find out.

2006-2009 were done on Bebo, so the articles are sadly gone, but you can click on the links to previous countdowns. There are a few former winners in this year’s chart.

2015 Blossoms – Charlemagne
2014 Jamie T – Zombie
2013 Haim – The Wire
2012 Taylor Swift – We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together
2011 Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – AKA …… What A Life
2010 Marina and the Diamonds – Shampain
2009 Little Boots – New In Town
2008 Sons and Daughters – Darling
2007 Feist – 1, 2, 3, 4
2006 Kasabian – Empire

76. Wyvern Lingo – Letter To Willow
77. DNCE – Cake By The Ocean
78. Tegan and Sara – Faint Of Heart
79. Bruno Mars – 24k Magic
80. Frank Turner – Mittens
81. David Bowie – Killing A Little Time
82. Garbage – Empty
83. James – Dear John
84. Primal Scream and Sky Ferreira – When The Light Comes In
85. Travis – Everything At Once
86. Manic Street Preachers – Together Stronger
87. Laura Tesoro – What’s The Pressure?
88. Nika Kocharov and Young Georgian Lolitaz – Midnight Gold
89. Sergey Lazarev – You Are The Only One
90. KT Tunstall – Evil Eye
91. Tove Lo – True Disaster
92. Kings Of Leon – Waste A Moment
93. The Divine Comedy – How Can You Leave Me On My Own?
94. Bear’s Den – Dew On The Vine
95. Richard Ashcroft – Hold On
96. Izzy Bizu & the BBC Orchestra – La Foule
97. Travis – What Will Come
98. Madness – Herbert
99. Primal Scream – Mantra For A State Of Mind
100. Madness – Can’t Touch Us Now

NOEL GALLAGHER’S HIGH FLYING BIRDS – LIVE AT TITANIC BELFAST (BELSONIC) 23.8.2016

Nearly eighteen months after it began, Noel Gallagher’s tour to promote his second solo album, Chasing Yesterday, returned to Belfast, the city where it all began in March 2015, as the tour reaches it’s final stages.

It was Gallagher’s fourth solo gig in Belfast, following a nice symmetry of Odyssey, Belsonic, Odyssey, Belsonic, though it was a change of venue from 2012, at Titanic Belfast rather than Custom House Square.

Support came from Catfish and the Bottlemen, which sounds like the spellcheck version of Echo and the Bunnymen, but don’t let that put you off.

They are rather good, one of those bands who you know more songs than you realise, performing their catchy hits such as Pacifier, 7 and Cocoon, to a lot of dancing.

Some people even left when they finished their set. Their loss.

This gig came on the day that the current issue of Q hit the shelves, with it’s cover star being Liam Gallagher, saying he has new music recorded. He’s even been laying down the gauntlet on Twitter, before announcing that he will release a solo album in 2017.

Noel was here to let his music do the talking, appearing on stage and bursting straight into solo hits such as Everybody’s on the Run, Lock All the Doors, In the Heat of the Moment and Riverman before giving the crowd a bit of Oasis with Fade Away, performing in the style of the version that appeared on the War Child album.

With a back catalogue like his, it was always going to be a difficult balancing act between his solo career and Oasis hits.

The Oasis songs that were played were largely different from the recorded versions. Not just vocally, but musically. It was Oasis being reimagined, which is what Noel has done recently, remixing Be He Now for a 20th anniversary re-release, even though it will be ten and a half months before the actual anniversary.

There were no songs from Be Here Now, the album in Oasis back catalogue that was raided most was The Masterplan, with fans being treated to a forgotten Oasis classics, D’Yer Wanna Be A Spaceman? and Listen Up.

Amongst the Oasis classics performed by him was Live Forever. I say he performed it, he sang “Maybe ……” and the crowd did the rest, the song being performed acoustically.

Back to his own solo hits, performing the likes of The Death of You and Me, You Know We Can’t Go Back, Ballad of the Mighty I, The Mexican and If I Had a Gun.

The only downside about Noel Gallagher gigs in Belfast, is that they seem to attract some Weapons Grade Fuckwits.

You ever see the Kevin and Perry sketch where Perry thinks he’s Liam Gallagher, starts talking in a Manchester accent and draws a beard with marker?

That was basically a lot of people in the audience.

Some guy near me managed to piss himself just after his mate got chucked out for trying to storm the the stage.

What next for Noel Gallagher? Who knows. It could be a while before Belfast sees him in the flesh, but we will get to see him in cinematic form with the release of an Oasis documentary film Supersonic in October.

This gig was my fourth Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds gig, compared to five Oasis gigs, meaning that the next time I see Noel Gallagher in action will equal that.

Or maybe, it will be a sixth Oasis gig? That’ll be unlikely considering that Liam will be busy throughout 2017.

I’m not going to get my hopes up. We all know what happens when you put your life in the hands of a rock n roll band.

Photo Album

Catfish and the Bottlemen Photo Album

See Also

Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds live at The Odyssey 2015

Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds live at Custom House Square 2012

Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds live at The Odyssey 2012

THE FRIDAY FIVE – 19.8.2016

1. Laether Strip – Waterfront
2. Travis ft Josephine Oniyama – Idlewild
3. Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – AKA …… What A Life
4. Madness – House Of Fun
5. Red Hot Chili Peppers – Cabron

THE FRIDAY FIVE – 29.4.2016

1. Bruce Springsteen – Purple Rain
2. Iggy Pop – Gardenia
3. Band Of Skulls – So Good
4. The 1975 – A Change Of Heart
5. Garbage – Empty

This week saw the latest batch of headliners for Belsonic announced.

After moving away from their traditional August slot to June, they’ve now added new August gigs to compliment the June ones.

The first one announced was The Corrs, rather underwhelming. Thankfully, it got better after that.

I know I shouldn’t really complain about the line-up, I should know by now that it’s so diverse i’m not actually going to like every headlining act.

The ones that appeal the most to me are Madness and Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds. It’ll be just like 2012.

I remember blogging about the big risks Belsonic was taking when it increased from two nights, now look at it.

Fair play to Belsonic, they’ve never been shy in taking risks or being ambitious.

Undecided about the new venue, but i’m more than willing to give it a chance. Looking forward to Belsonic 2025, a 120 night event running from May to September.

Oh, here’s a chart based on the August acts.

FIVE SONGS BY ACTS APPEARING AT BELSONIC IN AUGUST

1. Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – AKA What A Life
2. Madness – Lovestruck
3. Catfish and the Bottlemen – Kathleen
4. Fatboy Slim – Right Here Right Now
5. The Corrs – So Young

MAGAZINE ARCHIVE : Q – MARCH 2011

Liam Gallagher is the cover star of Q as he prepares to launch the debut album of Beady Eye, a band comprising of the non Noel Gallagher members of Oasis.

If you look closely, in Liam’s shades, you can see the other members of Beady Eye in his reflection.

In “Q Mail”, Simon Hunt e-mails to respond to previous correspondence complaining about Take That appearing in Q, while cheekily asking when Justin Bieber will be appearing on Cash For Questions.

Jonathan Paul from Leicester contacts Q to complain about their ignoring of Ian Matthews and Chris Edwards in Kasabian articles, in comparison to Serge Pizzorno and Tom Meighan.

Q50 is a feature of the 50 songs you should download this month. Top of the pile was The Beat Goes On by cover stars Beady Eye.

Gary Lightbody of Snow Patrol gets a guest submission, choosing Coal by The Mariner’s Children.

In news, Alex Turner records solo songs for a movie soundtrack, Green Day release a live album, The Kills are reforming and Beth Ditto is going on a solo career.

Featuring forthcoming albums, Glasvegas get a double page spread for their as yet titled new album.

Also working hard in the studio were Hard-Fi, with a propsed release date given as “Summer 2011”

Q dedicates a full page to a phone interview with Plan B, where he reveals that Forrest Gump is the one movie that makes him cry.

Tipped for greatness this month are The Joy Formidable, Miles Kane and MNDR.

Shaun Ryder is the subject of this month’s Cash For Questions, answering questions about Tony Wilson, UFOs and Reality TV.

In ads, Paul McCartney stars in an advert for PETA.

There are nine pages dedicated to cover stars Beady Eye, with Liam Gallagher claiming that “People will be calling their kids Beady Eye by the end of the year”

It’s not all about Liam, as Gem, Andy and Chris get profiled, looking at their musical CVs pre Oasis.

Junior Gallagher had gotten the first blow in to release post Oasis music, but Senior Gallagher (Noel) was at work on his debut solo album, with 17 tracks believed to have been recorded, one of which has Miles Kane on guitar, and was set for release in late summer.

Noel’s (using the name of Noel Galagher’s High Flying Birds) self titled debut album was eventually released in October 2011.

KT Tunstall gets a full page interview, where she denounces her stepdad, who was a BNP candidate.

Riding high on the success of Rolling In The Deep, Adele gets a four page profile.

Cee Lo Green is gets interviewed by Q, where he discusses his favourite albums.

Another band riding high in the charts, were Noah and the Whale, who got a three page feature.

2011 was the year that saw the 20th anniversary of the death of Freddie Mercury, and Q interviews Roger Taylor and Brian May, ahead of a feature about unseen Queen photographs being made public for the first time.

In reviews, Beady Eye’s debut album Different Gear, Still Speeding gets four stars.

Also getting four stars was Clare Maguire’s debut album Light After Dark and Hotel Shampoo by Gruff Rhys.

If Bruce Springsteen is your thing, Q has a handy guide for those wishing to explore his vast discography.

Concert Reviews sees Paul McCartney get a five star review for a concert at 100 Club in London just before Cristmas 2010.

Also getting five stars were The View for their pre Christmas gigs in Sheffield and Stoke.

THE SOUND OF 2015 : 1-25

So here we go, what you’ve been waiting for …….. The Top 25 songs of 2015. Enjoy.

1. Blossoms – Charlemagne
2. The Strypes – Get Into It
3. Chvrches – Leave A Trace
4. Muse – Revolt
5. Chemical Brothers – Go
6. Muse – Mercy
7. Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – Ballad Of The Mighty I
8. Ellie Goulding – Love Me Like You Do
9. Florence and the Machine – Queen Of Peace
10. Everything Everything – Spring/Sun/Winter/Dread
11. Calvin Harris ft Haim – Pray To God
12. Mumford and Sons – The Wolf
13. The 1975 – Love Me
14. Little Mix – Black Magic
15. Taylor Swift – Style
16. Mini Mansions – Death Is A Girl
17. Florence and the Machine – Ship To Wreck
18. Muse – Dead Inside
19. Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats – SOB
20. Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – You Know We Can’t Go Back
21. FFS – Piss Off
22. John Newman – Come And Get It
23. Everything Everything – Regret
24. Soak – Sea Creatures
25. Paul Weller – Saturn’s Pattern

So, congratulations to Blossoms. I bet they didn’t think that supporting Paul Weller and The Charlatans on tour could be topped, but it has.

If you haven’t heard the song before, here you go …..

They join an illustrious list of winners. Sadly, Bebo has wiped their archive, so I can’t link you 2006-2008.

THE SOUND OF …… PAST WINNERS

2014 Jamie T – Zombie
2013 Haim – The Wire
2012 Taylor Swift – We Are Never Getting Back Together
2011 Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – AKA …. What A Life
2010 Marina and the Diamonds – Shampain
2009 Little Boots – New In Town
2008 Sons and Daughters – Darling
2007 Feist – 1,2, 3, 4
2006 Kasabian – Empire

THE SOUND OF 2015 : 51-75

51. Stereophonics – Song For The Summer
52. Foo Fighters – Saint Cecilia
53. Travis – Everything At Once
54. Brandon Flowers – Can’t Deny My Love
55. Echosmith – Cool Kids
56. Charli XCX ft Rita Ora – Doing It
57. Cathal Smyth – Do You Believe In Love?
58. Squeeze – Cradle To Grave
59. Stereophonics – Cest La Vie
60. Walk The Moon – Different Colours
61. David Bowie – Blackstar
62. New Order – Restless
63. Muse – Psycho
64. Kodaline – Ready
65. Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – Riverman
66. Carly Rae Jepsen – Run Away With Me
67. Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – The Dying Of The Light
68. James Bay – Hold Back The River
69. The Weekend – Can’t Feel My Face
70. Chvrches – Empty Threat
71. Sunset Sons – She Wants
72. The Vaccines – Handsome
73. Years and Years – King
74. Charli XCX – Famous
75. Natalie Imbruglia – Instant Crush