Oasis, Ms Dynamite, and IdlewildEdit this event
- Astoria, London »
Charidee. Doncha just love it? It gives people like Phil Collins that warm glowy feeling inside, as they pledge their time to yet another useless cause, throwing money at a problem, instead of trying to solve it.
So, tonight the music is almost irrelevant. Music, for all its beauty, all its greatness, all those heart-in-mouth, breathtaking moments, is just another distraction. A way of diverting our attention from the fact that we are all slaves, and all of us are taught to live as dumb, mute animals that buy what we're told.
Shorn from the bluster and pomp, stripped of bullshit and artifice, we get a string of bands cranking out their gems as if they were in their living room. Lamb do whatever it is they do, and whatever it is they do fails to stick with me.
Idlewild, everybody's favourite band of the moment (despite having jettisoned their bassist in strangely tightlipped circumstances), rumble forth several songs, but to be honest, they seem no different from a million other bands I've seen and forgotten. Despite what everyone else says about them, to me, Idlewild are nothing I didn't see in dingy pubs ten years ago, sinking without trace.
Next up comes the best thing about Oasis (by several thousand miles). Noel Gallagher. This man should quit the rest of the band and go solo immediately if he's got any sense, because - despite some shockingly Welleresque moments - he writes the type of songs that are destined to go down as classics.
Songs that sound like they've been plucked right out of your head, expressed the thoughts you didn't even know you had, and connect with not just you, but everyone else here. Musically, he's a babelfish. Everyone speaks the same language during the brief, half hour set that sees Noel give us Beatles covers [insert your own joke here, kids - Adie, hijacking this article], the swooning “Talk Tonight”, and the caustic “Married With Children”. And “Wonderwall”. But not one song he’s written in the past eight years. And that's a shame, because there's a lot more to Noel than being a human jukebox cranking out history lessons.
And so we get Coldplay - our stadium indie REM-in-waiting offer an acoustic set of strangely safe melancholia and a dash of passion. With guests.Such as....
Ms Dynamite makes her appearance to duet a song with Chris, and a cover of a **Bob Marley classic, before they back her in her own theme song which, stripped of its traditional backing and rendered on nothing more than two acoustic guitars, is irresistable.
Next part of the evening sees Noel Gallagher team up with Coldplay. And there's joy everywhere for everyone it seems. Quite how songs of such intrinsic glumness can make people beam with joy. There's the marvellous “Yellow”, a woefully under-rehearsed but sweet cover of The Smiths “Stop Me If You've Heard This One Before”, and finally a celebratory “Live Forever”. There are also encores. So Rock N Roll.
Despite all this, you go out into the cold. And nothing's changed. Yes, you may be holding someone's hand in the cold of October winds. You may feel that the glory and power of love can change the world irrevocably for the better. You may feel as if the world is about to change, but it hasn’t.
Not yet. First we've got to change ourselves, and the world will follow. A better world.
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