Oasis split 'came from Liam ad row'
Wednesday 06 July 2011
Noel Gallagher has revealed that one of the most infamous splits in rock and roll stemmed from a row about an ad in an Oasis tour programme.
The guitarist, launching his solo album, finally broke his silence about his departure from the band, explaining that it spiralled from a squabble about brother Liam's demands for a free plug for his clothing range.
Noel quit the group in 2009 after years of tension between the pair.
He said that on the night of his departure - which led to the cancellation of a headline slot at a Paris festival - Liam stormed into the dressing room wielding a guitar like "an axe".
"He nearly took my face off with it," he said.
Noel said he regretted the way the band ended, splitting with just two shows to play. He added that if the group had finished the tour and had time to reflect, "we'd never have split up".
Noel is to launch his post-Oasis career with a new album, Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds, on October 17, the first of two albums which have been completed. The second will follow next year.
Noel revealed that tensions had been heightened on the night of the Paris showdown because the band had been forced to cancel a headline slot at the UK's V festival because Liam had failed to show up due to "a hangover". The official cause of the cancellation was Liam suffering from laryngitis.
The climactic row in France also led to Liam throwing a plum at his brother, which splattered against the dressing room wall, shortly before they were due on stage.
"Part of me wishes it did end like that - 'plum throws plum'," said Noel.
Noel said he had had no desire to leave Oasis - it was simply that he could no longer continue being in a band with his brother.
"I'd never had enough of Oasis - I'd had enough of him," he said.
"It started to unravel when he started his clothing label (Pretty Green) and he demanded that in the Oasis tour programme he be allowed to advertise.
"And I didn't think it was right for him to be flogging his gear to our fans. There was a massive row about it."
He added: "It slowly went downhill after that."
On the night of the Paris incident, Noel said his brother was getting pumped up about the bad reaction which had been prompted by the V Festival no-show.
"He storms out of the dressing room and on the way out, he picked up a plum and threw it across the dressing room and it smashes against the wall."
Liam eventually returned with a guitar which he was "wielding like an axe".
"It was real unnecessary violent act - he was swinging his guitar around. He nearly took my face off with it, you know."
The rest of the band remained silent throughout the outburst, much to Noel's disgust. "I said 'you know what, I'm walking out of here'," Noel explained.
"I sat in the car and thought 'f*** it, I can't do it any more'. I regret it really because we only had two gigs left.
"If I had my time again I'd have gone back, done the gigs," he added. The band could then have discussed their next move and had a "hiatus", Noel said.
"Liam always said he would bring down Armageddon in the end. It's a shame. I was comfortable in that band.
"At the end of the day he (Liam) doesn't like me. For me, there's no point in being in a band with people you fight with. What's the point?"
Noel said he had subsequently spoken to guitarist Gem Archer and drummer Chris Sharrock, but he has had no contact with Liam or bass player Andy Bell. The other four members of the band carried on without him, releasing an album this year under the name Beady Eye.
Noel said his new ten-track album had "echoes" of his old band and thought it would appeal to fans of old.
"I'm just assuming that fans of Oasis will like it. I was the main songwriter - I wrote every single song in that band that mattered," he said.
"If six million people buy it, the point I was trying to get across has hit home somewhere.
But he acknowledged that the album was unlikely to sell in the quantities that Oasis were used to.
"Commercial success is a weird thing cos it usually implies you're shit - know what I mean?"
But he quickly added: "I'm going to backtrack on that because we sold a lot of records."
Noel will support the album with a tour of small venues, beginning in Dublin on October 23.
A larger tour may follow in 2012, when he will release his second album which has been made with production duo Amorphous Androgynous. The pair - Garry Cobain and Brian Dougans, who also recorded as Future Sound Of London - had worked with Noel before with their 22-minute remix of Oasis's Falling Down.
He said of the untitled second album: "It's f****** far out man. It's the furthest out I've ever been."
Noel began his solo recordings on the night of the Brit Awards in 2010, while Liam picked up an award for the best album of the past 30 years for Oasis's (What's The Story) Morning Glory?, and pointedly failed to thank his brother.
Noel, 44, pointed out it was a "momentous night" because he also learned from his wife Sara MacDonald - whom he married last month - that she was pregnant with their second child Sonny.
Noel said it would be "weird" stepping back into the spotlight as the focus of attention for live shows because he had spent so many years on the side of the stage as a guitarist.
"I never thought of myself as a frontman. Now it's kind of like, I've got to stand in the middle of the stage. That's going to be weird," added Noel.
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