Somewhere along the line, I significantly lowered my standards for Oasis. I’ve never disliked an album they’ve released, and I still listen to all the work they’ve released in the past fourteen years with equal measure. I thought that Dig Out Your Soul was pretty good with one astounding track in “Falling Down,” Don’t Believe the Truth was excellent and Heathen Chemistry was a legitimate classic, one of my favorite albums of the 2000’s. I’m the kind of person that will like anything that Oasis puts out, because their sound makes me happy, and it takes a lot to phase that complacency out of me. I say this about Oasis albums, because Different Gear, Still Speeding, the debut album from former Oasis member Liam Gallagher’s new band, Beady Eye, might as well be an Oasis album. The only aspect of it that is unlike something the group would have released after Dig Out Your Soul is the absence of Noel Gallagher’s voice, which was unique enough to temper the group from full-on Beatles worship.
Other than that, though, there’s not much else to say about the album. Half its title is true, because, although Liam maintains the consistency of Oasis’s more pedestrian material, it’s hardly any different than what would have resulted if Noel had just left Oasis instead of disbanding the group. Fans of Liam’s mainstay will be satisfied. Those who particularly enjoyed Noel’s vocal contributions may find his absence and Liam’s at times questionable lyrics (“I get the call / You get hung up / I’m standing tall / We’re fucking tough”) grating, but will ultimately be thankful that the album isn’t nearly as bad as Oasis baiters have made it out to be.