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UpInTheSite Interview: Irene

For the first inteview of this brand new column of our website we are very glad to introduce Irene, a mad fer it from London.

Tell me something about your life. Where do you live? What’s your job and hobbies?
I was born and raised in London, but I have German ancestry. In the future I plan to move to Leeds. I’m not working yet, I’m still studying at uni, doing linguistics. My majors are foreign languages, translation and literature. I’m an aspiring writer, I occasionally draw and write songs, I like playing the piano and travelling the world. I’m passionate about sports and been supporting Man City for many years now. Still, Oasis music remains my biggest passion.

Which are your first Oasis-related memories (one particular song)?
The song that got me into Oasis was Whatever. I remember watching a random documentary about the 90s britpop on YouTube once, as I’ve already been into Blur and The Verve. And there I just saw an extract from the Whatever music video, and I guess that was love at first sight – as soon as I heard the song, I realized I wanted to find out more about the band. I started searching for more of their songs, and found the acoustic version of Live Forever on MTV back in 1994 – and has been hooked on Oasis ever since. I’ll also forever be in debt to Oasis, because it was thanks to them that I got to meet my boyfriend, he came across my old Wonderwall post on twitter and we started talking – and have been inseparable ever since. Even though I never got to see Oasis live – I’m just too young I guess – this band will always hold a special place in my heart.

Pick the verse of a Gallagher-penned song that resonates with you the most and tell me why.
“Maybe I will never be all the things that I’d like to be, but now it’s not the time to cry, now’s the time to find out why”.

Live Forever is my all-time favourite Oasis song, mostly because the lyrics are really relatable for me. This song has got me through so many hard times: the loss of my close relative, a breakup, tough times at uni – this song has always managed to lift me up and give me hope. That verse basically says there’s no need for despair and even if everything seems to be falling apart, it’s up to us to make things right – only if we’re strong enough to never back down. It’s such a powerful idea.

The band’s career has always experienced highs and lows, line-up and sound changes. Which is the most interesting Oasis era in your opinion?
Personally I’ve always been interested in Definitely Maybe era and the early Oasis days. Just the fact that the band escalated from playing small pubs and clubs like Boardwalk to headlining huge festivals and performing at stadiums always fascinates me, it’s unbelievable. I love discovering unheard early demos and rare recordings from that era, be it Liam singing Sad Song or Noel playing pre-Oasis tunes he wrote as a roadie, thinking those songs will never see the light of day. I also really like Tony McCarroll’s style of drumming and believe it was mostly him who made Definitely Maybe sound as energetic and lively as it does. I believe he deserved way more recognition than he ended up getting. Oasis wrote those tunes before hitting superstardom. In general, Definitely Maybe is my favourite Oasis album and this era still holds so many undiscovered secrets.

The album you care more about?
Since I’ve already named Definitely Maybe as my favourite Oasis album, not to repeat myself I’m going to express my love for Be Here Now which must be the most underrated Oasis record. So many tunes off it have never even been played live, take I Hope I Think I Know or Girl in the Dirty Shirt – even though I don’t doubt they would sound mindblowing live. I believe it often gets overlooked because of all the overproduction and too many layers of dirty guitar sound, but the lyrics and the overall vibe make this album stand out for me, and I believe it should be spoken about more often.

This August will mark the 10th anniversary of Oasis’ split. In your opinion, where would Oasis be now if that fistfight had never happened? Do you share Noel’s view that the ‘drive’ had gone away or do you share Liam’s view that the band still had a lot to say?
I believe it wasn’t just the fistfight that put an end to the band we all love. It looks like it was just an excuse for Noel to get out, and he’d been planning it for a long while. It’s widely known that Liam once overheard Noel talking backstage to the Oasis tour staff about his solo career and they agreed to help him split the band and find his feet as a solo artist. Liam felt betrayed, all this scheming was done behind his back and then he just ended up dumped like that. That’s why recordings like Slide Away at ITunes are so heartbreaking to watch, he knew those were the last days of Oasis. I’m sure the band still had a lot to say, but I believe Noel decided there were too many restrictions imposed on him in the band and the only way to get this freedom of artistic expression was to go solo. Personally I disapprove of his ways of getting out of the band, and I tend to side with Liam, I also think Oasis weren’t conceptually over and still could do lots of great things. Still, we can’t force Noel to go back to Oasis against his will. It would feel forced and artificial. That’s why the chances are that so far Oasis will remain the most missed band in history.

What should we expect from the future? More solo albums or the much anticipated reunion?
As a hardcore Oasis fan, I still religiously believe in the reunion, but I don’t think it’ll happen in the nearest future. Noel probably needs more time to realize he actually needs the band, his brother, the sense of belonging and unity of the spirit. Until then probably we should expect more solo albums both from Liam and Noel, luckily they’re still making music and we should be grateful for what we have. I believe one day Oasis will be back, gotta keep the dream alive I suppose. I’m personally looking forward to Liam’s upcoming second album and I think right now we should focus on the great music we keep getting from both Noel and Liam. Still, any Oasis fan, me included, dreams of seeing them back on stage together one day, and this dream will stay with us forever I guess – maybe that’s why we keep coming back to watching Supersonic over and over again – the nostalgic feeling mixed with pride is what actually means to be an Oasis fan. After all these years they remain our favourite band, and that will never change.


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