December 12, 2006

Stop the clocks for a little Oasis contest: Win a signed lithograph

So you didn’t win the Damien Rice lithograph? Your walls are still naked and sad? Well now you have a chance to snag yourself something with a little cool history to it, and autographed to boot (no, not by me, although I suppose that could be arranged).

The cover art for the new Oasis greatest-hits collection Stop The Clocks was designed by Peter Blake, most famous for his work on the graphic design of The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band cover. I’ve got one lithograph print of the cover artwork (only 100 made) which is autographed by both Noel Gallagher and Peter Blake for your visual enjoyment, superfan satisfaction, and party conversation-starting.

As someone commented on a recent post, Oasis makes some “straight up, plug your guitar in, turn it up to 10, smack you in your face rock n roll. Need more of it. Too much of this sad sap introspective indie going around.” That made me smile.

Bear with me on this idea for how to win. Ready? Okay. If you could “stop the clocks” (groan) on one Oasis song at one specific moment, what is it? I am not looking for your favorite Oasis song per se, but your favorite moment or segment of an Oasis song. I think some of you are feelin’ me on this, you love the little moments in a song — it could be a lyric and the way it perfectly combines with a melody, a scorching bridge, a hanging silence between drumbeats, or even an exhalation at the start of a song. What’s yours from the Gallagher gents and why?

For the purposes of this contest, I’d define a “moment” as less than 30 seconds of a song, max. And the contest will run the week (through Friday) and I’ll make the decision over the weekend. Unleash your musical thinker.

The song titled “Stop The Clocks” was rumored to be on the compilation, a much-anticipated release of a song that Noel says in a typically humble and understated fashion is probably one of the best songs he’s ever written, but has never seen the official light of day. The new album was even named after it, but it was pulled from the line-up, and now exists only in poor-quality rip-off hoaxes found online. Read the whole torrid story here.

Related audio: Noel Gallagher acoustic in Toronto last month

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37 Comments »

  • >feint cheering of crowd<
    >undecipherable liam utterance<
    >feedback kicking in<
    ‘wassup’
    >crashing guitars, more feedback<
    ‘wassup…..dunt matter if it’s outta choon. doesn’t matter if it’s out of choon…..cos yoor kewl’
    >cymbals<
    >guitar intro to one of the best cover versions ever recorded – I Am The Walrus.

    dom — December 12, 2006 @ 1:57 pm

  • Heather,

    What I am about to write to you is in no way an opportunity to suck up for the litho…. It’s a true story (really!). So here goes…

    I don’t need thirty seconds of an Oasis song.

    I don’t even need fifteen.

    All I need is about three.

    Seriously. Three.

    Imagine yourself on a sunny Friday afternoon driving a banged up Jeep with top down north up the 15 from Los Angeles to Las Vegas. As you drive past Barstow, and the In-N -Out begins to settle, the road clears for miles. Your mix has already thrown on Wiser Time, One Big Holiday and MFC, and as you take a moment to exhale and enjoy the beauty around you, the sound of a guitar being plugged in blares through your speakers.

    Now you’re thinking, ok, this guy’s moment is the opening riff of “Cigarette’s and Alcohol,” right? Nope. It ain’t about the riff baby.

    It’s all about the drum fill!

    My moment is that stops my clock every time is that “clacky clack” drum fill that follows the opening riff of one epic road song that Hunter S. Thompson himself would approve of.

    I challenge you to listen to it in your car and not attempt to air drum that fill! Go on try it! I dare you. It’s physically impossible. Scientist should be doing a study on it.

    (You have to air drum that fill, it follows that same musical law that states by just mentioning the song “Tained Love,” it automatically get stuck in your head for the day.)

    Report back to me if you used “air sticks” or just pounded your hands right on the damn steering wheel! Also, let me know if you sang out at the top of your lungs the opening line “Is it my imagination, or have I finally found something worth living for?” complete with British accent or not. If you didn’t do any sort of these acts, you are inhuman and have no soul.

    I’m just sayin.

    Claim E. Claimer — December 12, 2006 @ 2:52 pm

  • there are many, many moments in oasis songs that strike a chord with people of all shapes and sizes. i suppose that’s why they’re as successful as they are. when i first read this post earlier this evening, all kinds of snippets came to mind – the ‘walrus’ moment (see above) was one of them.

    Thank you Heather for making me pay attention to the Gallaghers once again. It’s easy to scroll passed the 100 or so tracks that I have in iTunes, but tonight I have given them their due. Your little exercise made me stop at oa…

    Personally I find it difficult to separate any small section of a song and say it’s better than the rest. For me, the song is the song. Sure, there are snippets here and there that make the hairs stand on my neck, but I’m not gonna keep on playing a 30 second clip am I?!

    I’m quite partial to many of Oasis b-sides, so here’s a lyrical snapshot that I’m fond of;

    ‘it’s hard enough sittin’ there / rockin’ in your rockin’ chair / it’s all too much for me to take when your not there’

    dom — December 12, 2006 @ 3:14 pm

  • Thanks, Dom, for your eloquence, and I am glad that you’ve gone back and listened to good music you otherwise might not have tonight.

    Of course, I love whole songs too, a song is a song, not a clip. But there are always those moments that you anticipate, that you air drum to, that you sing along with, that you wait to arrive. I love those moments in music. Thanks to all who have taken a shot so far, it’s almost enough to make me listen to a bunch of Oasis.

    ;)

    heather — December 12, 2006 @ 3:18 pm

  • my fav. moment in an Oasis tune..is by The Lemonheads. On the 12 song fan club cd, Evan does a cover of Liv Forever..
    He makes it his own….
    At 1:42..even overdubs himself whistling an humming..then breaks into a soft, but rough vocals…and ends it with some snoring…
    BRILLIANT !!!!!!!

    SINEDDIE — December 12, 2006 @ 3:45 pm

  • back on with those moments.

    first time i saw oasis live in 2002 in manchester – just when they did dont look back in anger, and the band always stop for the crowd to sing the final bit the “but dont look back in anger” bit before noel does it. when the crowd did that, he goes “dont look back in anger… youre supposed to be the fookin manchester crowd” and and then just as he sings it finally, it was just such a euphoric moment.

    that part sends shivers down my spine ever since.

    Joshua Lachkovic — December 12, 2006 @ 4:16 pm

  • Favorite Oasis moment…I’m not sure that ‘favorite’ is the right word for it. More like ‘personally significant.’ And I’m about to get real personal, so if mush is uncomfortable, you might as well skip this. Back in the fall and winter of 97, my father was going through a very bad time—my mom had just left, he didn’t deal very well. At all. So that Christmas I wrote him a letter, laying out the reasons he couldn’t kill himself, as he had been discussing. (Yes, discussing. It was not a good Christmas.) In the letter, dorky music obsessed teenager that I was, I quoted Noel—“Don’t go away, say what you say, but say that you’ll stay.” Things slowly got better after the new year..they got bad again later, but that’s another story…anyway, that January I saw Oasis in concert, for the first and only time. And during the middle of the show, everyone but Noel left the stage. And he sang, you guessed, “Don’t Go Away.” Just Noel and his acoustic guitar. And when he got to that line, I completely lost it. It was a beautiful moment.

    My dad is doing okay now, and has been for a few years. But I still get a little verklempt whenever I listen to that song.

    Krista — December 12, 2006 @ 6:05 pm

  • Heather,

    As a lifetime oasis fan, I thought long and hard on this one. I put on the 1996 Maine Road DVD and busted out my Definitely maybe and Morning glory singles box-sets for inspiration. For me, the signature oasis moment is near the end of “Live Forever.” As Noel mentions on the Definitely Maybe DVD, the most important line in that song is, “we’ll see things they’ll never see.” The line itself is magical; one to which everyone can relate to. The idea that you and a person close to you can share experiences, and view life in ways no one else can. An inside joke, a smile from across the room…those are the priceless moments in life Noel is referring to. Combine the lyrics with the soaring guitar solo, the images of passed musicians on the Maine Road DVD and the picture of John Lennon’s childhood home on the cover of the Live Forever single and you have the best moment from any Oasis song period.

    -Dan P.

    dpartridge10@hotmail.com

    Anonymous — December 12, 2006 @ 9:23 pm

  • “All we know is that we don’t know”

    I’m a Noel girl. Always have been, always will be. His voice on that line is almost breathtaking.

    This moment on “The Masterplan” is forever ingrained in my mind as one of the songs where Noel really earns his bragging rights as a songwriter. Despite it being a slower tune, this epic b-side epitomizes the sibling rivalry, unbelievable talent, and straight up swaggar that makes these boys shine as far as I’m concerned. Add in a line like “Please brother let it be,” and you’ve got me.

    This song may not be my favorite Oasis standard (Don’t Look Back In Anger) or the song I listened to on repeat after coming home from my first date (Slide Away) but I’ll be damned if it isn’t my favorite single moment from a band that I can’t help but fall in love with over and over again.

    Annie — December 12, 2006 @ 10:43 pm

  • With the “These are the next Beatles” frenzy that encircled Oasis in the mid-90′s, “So I start a revolution from my bed” is, at least,a nod and wink, to all of that, as if Noel just how much hype was to come.
    “You say you want a revolution
    Well, you know,We all want to change the world.” That’s the Beatle way. The 60′s way. The screw-you, anti-establishment, we-are-the-young-and-we-know-what’s-best way.
    “So I start a revolution from my bed” is all I need from “Don’t Look Back In Anger.” That’s the Gallagher way. The 90′s way. The we-are-the-young-and-we-are-screwed-so-let’s-have-fun way.

    Natsthename — December 13, 2006 @ 5:53 am

  • “Hung in a Bad Place”, off Heathen Chemistry.
    OK, I know this is later Oasis, thus not as good Oasis, but the one thing this album did for me was confirm the earlier greatness of this band, which I will always count as one of the very finest Rock ‘n Roll bands ever. it wasn’t a masterwork by any means, but it has it bright spots, and its bright moments were really, really good (I always feel like I have to defend Oasis to people: “you know, the Stones had a period where they were considered less than critically acclaimed,” so I feel like Oasis not only has staying power, but will actually become a vital band again.)
    Anyway, as I said “Hung in a Bad Place” is a more obscure tune from them, but it is a fantastic rock ‘n roll burner. and right at the solo break, Noel kind of stutters his notes, so the scream of the guitar hesistates for just a sec, lets is sort of shimmy for a sec like it’s about to take off, then just tumbles into the really ferocious roar. just the way a guitar solo should.
    Love it!! Gets me everytime.
    (This is tough, you know, thinking of my favorite musical bit from songs that are so simple, yet so well crafted. the best songs really are moments within moments…)

    andyracer — December 13, 2006 @ 7:55 am

  • i don’t know if this counts, but one of the most delicate and beautiful oasis moments for me is actually Ryan Adams cover of “Wonderwall,” especially during the chorus. The way he slides his vocals on the “maybe….” and also the slight crack in his voice in the “you’re my wonderwall” and eases into a perfect falsetto… AMAZING. the way it so sparse, it really showcases the best of ryan’s vocals and his finger picking… i actually think it fits the lyrical mood of the song better than the oasis version. i’m sure i’d get a punch in the face if i said that to Liam’s face, but its true… anwyays, that’s my vote.

    steve joh — December 13, 2006 @ 12:39 pm

  • Hands down, the whistle-solo at 3:12 on “Flashbax” — okay … it’s actually 41 seconds long, but hey, c’mon…

    It’s not just the whistling though, it’s the way every single instrument interplays with each other during that spot of the song. It is absolutely positively amazing… and it’s a side of Oasis we don’t really get to see often.

    If you haven’t heard the song (and just about every Oasis fan I’ve ever met never even knew it existed), you’ll either need to get your hands on the All Around the World single, or …. http://ia.daunsdolls.com/Joe/Oasis%20-%20Flashbax.mp3

    In my opinion, it’s the best Oasis B-Side ever recorded… and it has a WHISTLING SOLO!!! I’m not joking. It’s is seriously my favorite Oasis B-side and it’s quite possibly my favorite Oasis song… although there’s some fierce competition from “Underneath the Sky” and the entire “Be Here Now” album.

    I swear — I NEVER understood why so many people (and Oasis themselves) have disowned this album… it’s purely brilliant!

    Ian — December 13, 2006 @ 3:10 pm

  • The opening to Slide Away.

    The first note serves as a warning of what’s to come. Next, the guitar captures the entire feeling of the song in one little stretch of song. The arrival of the bass and drums give it that extra oomph. And of course, Liam’s voice.

    Maybe more than just 30 seconds, but to me, this opening is the definition of Oasis.

    VelvetFog — December 13, 2006 @ 5:51 pm

  • This is a ridiculously tough thing to narrow down. I find Oasis has so many of these moments for me that it becomes really hard.

    I’m going to pull an obscure one on you here. The first 15 seconds of the song Force Of Nature. Now not the namby pamby version that appeared on Heathen Chemistry, but the version that came before it, off the Love, Honour and Obey Soundtrack. The song itself was rumoured to be about Noel’s ex-wife Meg Mathews, and in this version it seems to feature a vindictive edge by comparison to the album version. In those first 15 seconds you hear some of the most amped up drums you’ll hear on an Oasis track, though with a crackle overlayed as if you had just put the needle down on a record. You hear a guitar strum that sounds like Noel just tried to start a lawnmower, followed by one of his trademark count ins. Then in comes the jangly, uneven organ, rugged guitar and drums get this stomper going. It’s a thing of beauty.

    In trying to figure out what bit I would mention it just so happened I listened to The Girl In The Dirty Shirt, followed by Force Of Nature. If you have both these tracks it’s well worth listening to in order. The first is about Noel meeting Meg and his willingness to make her happy and accept her for who she was and serves as the opening chapter of their relationship. The second song pretty much writes the closing chapter on their relationship, as he sums her all her flaws and kicks her to the curb for being a freeloading floozy. That’s just good shit.

    modsuperstar — December 13, 2006 @ 7:51 pm

  • Ok, so I would definitely maybe (checky) stop the clocks in any live version of Champagne Supernova for this example I use Familiar to Millions. There’s a moment just before Noels guitar solo, when you can hear everyone in Wembly Stadium, carried by Liams voice singing “Why, why, why, wy-hi.” In the midst of all this you hear that drum fill. The thunderous hammer of the gods crashing into the transition between that last “Why” and the beginning bend of Noels solo is where the clocks stop for me. Chills crash up and down your spine and you know that by the end of Noels solo, you’re gunna wanna call a friend, and take a look outside and make sure the world’s still there. This moment defines triumph. “This is history” reels of classic Oasis moments flash before your eyes and for once no matter where you are, you’re on top of the world looking up with the swagger back in your step. This moment defines Oasis, takes you back to 95, like you’re standing with millions of Oasis fans in awe at Knebworth, or Maine Road. Blinding!

    ryanamber — December 13, 2006 @ 8:54 pm

  • I would “stop the clocks” during the following segment of ‘Half The World Away;:

    So here I go still scratching around the same old hole
    My body feels young but my mind is very old
    So what do you say?
    You can’t give me the dreams that are mine anyway
    You’re half the world away
    Half the world away
    Half the world away
    I’ve been lost I’ve been found but I don’t feel down.

    The first time I heard it it, it was one of the rare moments when you hear the right song at the most appropriate moment of your life. Worded and sung perfectly.

    Anonymous — December 13, 2006 @ 9:32 pm

  • My favorite segment of an Oasis song is quite easily the opening to “Champagne Supernova,” because it reminds me of happiness. I find that a lot of the best times that I have had with friends have been when we’ve just gotten into a car and driven around aimlessly while talking. The beginning of “Champagne Supernova,” with the waves crashing and the light guitar, makes me want to just light a cigarette and hit the road and go somewhere (or absolutely nowhere). That whole song, and especially the intro, make me think that happiness is nothing more than a short drive away, all I have to do is just to get in the car and go.

    Tommy — December 14, 2006 @ 4:32 pm

  • Bloody ‘ell, it’s 4:30 into “Stand by Me”, when the the song barrels into a wall of strings, guitars, hand claps, sneering blokes, and whatever they could cram into the studio that day. That moment is so silly and enjoyable and stupid and brilliant, it perfectly encapsulates the overblown excess of Oasis that many despise and I adore.
    -Slush (srslush@yahoo.com)

    Anonymous — December 14, 2006 @ 6:58 pm

  • “We put this festival on you bastards/with all our love.
    We worked one year for pigs./You wanna break our walls down,/you wanna destroy?!/Well you go to hell!”

    Anyone who’s been lucky enough to see this band live can attest to this, when the guys walk on stage at this point and you lose your fucking mind. You’re pumped, the band’s strapping in, and Liam assesses the crowd – taking it all in.

    There’s bands that put on a good live act, and there’s bands that can make a nice record in the studio.

    Then there’s Oasis.

    If you love Oasis or hate them, you still can’t say that the first 30 seconds of Fuckin’ in the Bushes
    doesn’t raise every hair on your body and get you pumped up for the show that will change your life.

    thank you.

    monkeyboy — December 14, 2006 @ 10:30 pm

  • without a doubt, in ‘acquiesce’, the chorus when noel passionately kicks in with “cause we need each other/ we believe in one another/ and i know we’re gonna uncover/ whats sleeping in our souls”. everytime it comes around, it makes me pick up my step and refreshes a realization that anything is possible, even for a couple of blue collar blokes out of manchester. Though he’ll deny it to his grave, you can feel the underlying brotherly love in his voice, and know that from those very early days he both felt and recognized it would take the sum of the brothers sticking it out, for things to go where they now sit. Noel has always made brilliant forecasts in his lyrics, this one is the definition. Pure genius.

    passengersideview — December 14, 2006 @ 10:55 pm

  • So, I jumped on the ‘Oasis’ bandwagon a little later than most. I was living on a little island called Jost Van Dyke in the Caribbean. I had mail (albeit delayed by weeks), and I was still a subscriber to ‘Spin’ at the time. I had read a lot about these guys. Not being the biggest ‘Beatles’ fan (whom they were always compared to), I just kept up on the gossip of the battling Gallegher brothers.
    I was working at this place, and we had a cassette that said, “Mixed Tape”. We would listen to it 3 X a night. Me and my friend Dan knew every song before they even started.
    One of the songs was ‘Live Forever’ and although this was me and Dan’s favorite, we could never find out who sung it. We were really remote out there in Jost. Anyway, when I was leaving the island, about two months after the mixed tape mysteriously arrived, we were partying at the place I worked. All of my co-workers were there, and they were sending me off. The reggae stops and Dan puts in “Live Forever”. And it was the most cacophonous, tear filled sing a long EVER. one of the most touching moments of my life.
    About a month later, I was in NYC, and it came on the jukebox, and I went over to see who the hell sang this, and I discovered it was…

    mickeyitaliano — December 15, 2006 @ 1:16 am

  • Crap!!
    Here is the MOMENT…from above post

    Maybe I will never be
    All the things that I want to be
    But now is not the time to cry
    Now’s the time to find out why
    I think you’re the same as me
    We see things they’ll never see
    You and I are gonna live forever
    We’re gonna live forever
    Gonna live forever

    mickeyitaliano — December 15, 2006 @ 1:30 am

  • this contest is awesome. i thought about it for a long time and just realized—to my utter guitar-loving dismay—that my favorite bit of any oasis song is liam’s sweet gravel floating over the vaguely present little piano notes in the chorus of songbird. he’s singing “she’s not anyone” – the fact that those words are coming from liam (!!) of all people hit me so hard when i first heard it. it’s a very simple and beautiful love song and someday i hope someone sings that sentiment to me. (but not liam.)

    c — December 15, 2006 @ 8:34 am

  • There’s an Oasis song that I can only listen to every once in a while because when I hear it’s got too much power over me – “Champagne Supernova”. I am not sure it’s the “best” song in their catalogue, and, I’ve never really been able to understand why I feel the way I do when I listen to it, but, when I was thinking of how I’d respond to this competition, I realized that I have to finally try and understand why “Champagne Supernova” represents what Oasis means to me.

    It’s specifically the opening lines that Liam sings that just make my stomach feel like it’s got butterflies in it – it’s that exact feeling that we readers were asked to describe in this competition. When Liam first sings: “How many special people change/How many lives are living strange/Where were you while we were getting high” his voice has this divine-like quality to it, it’s so clear and so smooth. The recording at this part of the track captured something that can’t be recreated in Oasis’s live performances of this song; the singing at this part is so perfect! The voice quality continues on thru “Slowly walking down the hall/Faster than a cannonbawwwl/Where were you while we were getting high” with this echo-ey sound in it that makes me need to listen to the track at the highest volume possible (it’s great with headphones on). It’s almost like Acapella Liam, right up until after the line “A dreamer dreams she never dies/wipe that tear away now from your eye” – another line that is just classic. The lyrics and the sound of the entire song at this opening point, most obviously the line “Someday you will find me caught beneath a landslide in a Champagne Supernova in the sky”, are almost heavenly, and I guess that’s what ultimately rouses the feeling that I get as if nothing else matters at that moment except me and the music. The story Noel tells in his ridiculous couplets, for some reason, makes me think that “reality” (where we’re all getting high, ironically, as Liam was apparently completely gone when he laid this track down) isn’t all there is to our existence. At that point, I can let go of myself and give in to the music completely. This song makes me want to rock on until my dying days, until I become a bubbling champagne supernova, way up in the sky. And that’s the euphoric feeling the listener gets when you really listen to a band like Oasis.

    I just love this band so so much. (And I would really love to hang that lithograph on my wall…)

    Kristina — December 15, 2006 @ 4:13 pm

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Bio Pic Name: Heather Browne
Location: Colorado, originally by way of California
Giving context to the torrent since 2005.

"I love the relationship that anyone has with music: because there's something in us that is beyond the reach of words, something that eludes and defies our best attempts to spit it out. It's the best part of us, probably, the richest and strangest part..."
—Nick Hornby, Songbook
"Music has always been a matter of energy to me, a question of Fuel. Sentimental people call it Inspiration, but what they really mean is Fuel."
—Hunter S. Thompson

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