Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – Chasing Yesterday. Album Review

2011’s brilliant self-titled debut from the group was just brilliant. The album saw Noel Gallagher give his fans the music that they wanted and that was key to his success over Liam’s Beady Eye. Continuing using his Britpop roots, CHASING YESTERDAY is indeed another good album. How does this album hold up?

Well, opening track ‘Riverman’ almost sounds like Wonderwall is about to be played, then it is aggressively changed to become its own entity. Done on purpose? Maybe it was, and it feels a bit sloppy for doing so, but I do still enjoy it. But it’s ‘In The Heat Of The Moment’ that really offers something fresh and new to the NGHFB camp. The beat is relentless and the “nah nah nah nah nah…” line never irritates. The influence of Oasis is here, but you can’t call this simple cashing in of work done before. ‘The Girl With X-Ray Eyes’ continues the expansion, and feels like a step on from the indie rock we knew. ‘Lock All The Doors’ hits you, the power behind the chords is exhilarating and the tempo will get you pumping your fist in the air.

NGHFB live
‘The Dying Of The Light’, like some of the tracks on here, goes over five minutes in length. These tracks, and this one, are given the chance to really breathe, but feels a bit out of place after our last few hard-hitters. ‘The Right Stuff’ becomes the nostalgic trip; it has that feeling of rough cuts from Cream and gives a more sway action to the previous rock out moments. ‘While The Song Remains The Same’ is not the most appropriate title, as the song is by no means the same as what we have already heard. This song hardly grabs me like some of the tracks have done before. ‘The Mexican’ apparently was almost missed out on the album, but this tune using the fantastic backing vocals of Vula Malinga and production by Amorphous Androgynous make this a treat to behold and one you want to instantly play back again. ‘You Know We Can’t Go Back’ becomes Noel’s attempt to shift from Britpop melodies and go for rock, this would never be part of an Oasis album, and that’s one good thing we can say about this song. Finally, we reach the much talked about ‘Ballad Of The Mighty I’ where we see Johnny Marr contribute to one on of the stronger tracks in this set. The excitement levels are on high and the beat gets you strumming that air guitar with full force and emotion.

The conclusion as this may not top the excitement from the first album, CHASING YESTERDAY indeed embraces itself as a solid and strong follow-up. Noel Gallagher has spent plenty of time on this album, and makes it work accordingly. A few tracks may seem a bit weaker and a song in particular that just sounds like it is rehashing a classic aside, I really like this album. I think that I can happily listen to this album over and over. Also the deluxe edition comes with a recorded version of the track ‘Freaky Teeth’ which I campaign to have as the soundtrack to the new James Bond film (and he earns points for this song)!

Final Rating: 8/10

Written by Jonjo Cosgrove


Tues 3rd Mar: Belfast Odyssey Arena

Fri 6th Mar: Nottingham Capital FM Arena

Sat 7th Mar: Glasgow SSE Hydro

Mon 9th Mar: Manchester Arena

Tues 10th Mar: London O2 Arena

Sat 28th Mar: London Royal Albert Hall

Sat 4th July: Calling Festival – London Clapham Common

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