Rating: 2.5/5 stars
As You Were, the highly anticipated solo album from the most outspoken of the Gallagher brothers, undeniably opens strong. Despite the dubious country-rock edge of abrasive harmonica, ‘Wall Of Glass’ powerfully attacks the fragility and superficial nature of modern pop music, while immortalising Gallagher as “the resurrection”, true to his iconic self-assured nature, and is altogether reared by the track’s reverberating chorus. Yet from this point onwards, the album seems to lose momentum and ultimately, the Gallagher identity.
Tracks such as ‘Bold’, ‘Paper Crown’ and ‘I’ve All I Need’ seem largely monotonous and lacking of meaning, while ‘Come Back To Me’ seems to channel Radiohead’s OK Computer, ‘Doesn’t Have To Be That Way’ sounds more pop than rock, and ironically, ‘Universal Gleam’ seems more Blur than Oasis. These issues question who Gallagher is trying to be as a solo artist, as much of the album does not correlate with his boisterous rock ‘n’ roll star persona. It is in such a way that Gallagher arguably falls victim to his self-admittedly poor song writing abilities; this loss of identity may greatly be down to the fact that roughly a third of As You Were has been written by Swedish pop group Miike Snow’s Andrew Wyatt, with Wyatt and other contributors failing to capture the turbulent essence of Gallagher’s persona.
Other than ‘Wall Of Glass’, As You Were is ultimately a compilation of greatly unmemorable, vacant songs that fail to live up to the expectation encompassing Gallagher’s solo debut. Yet that being said, at the point of writing, according to the Official Charts Company As You Were is outselling the entire top 20, so perhaps Gallagher’s cult following and vociferous personality speaks more for him than his lyrics ever will.
Image: Renegade PR