Liam Gallagher is the most recognisable frontman that Britain has produced over the last 30 years. Through Oasis, Beady Eye and as a solo artist, Gallagher has made an entire generation imitate his way of life, and even now he’s approaching 50, his allure hasn’t weakened. There’s no doubt that Gallagher is a cultural icon, but in the wake of all the headlines that surround him, sometimes it is easy to forget that his ethereal voice is what made everything possible in the first place.
While he’s thoroughly entertaining on Twitter, throwing shots at anyone who dares to come at him, Gallagher was responsible for a revolution during the 1990s that swept the nation. Now, decades later, he’s back riding high after suffering a slump in form, enjoying the fruits of an Indian summer.
What Oasis achieved during their time together represented a cultural and musical shift. The now-iconic image of Gallagher standing on stage at Knebworth, arms spread out wide in front of an endless sea of people, says more than any words possibly could about what they achieved. Although things slowly dwindled from a personal perspective over the years that followed, as Oasis began to sound like an imitation of their former selves, the collective group lost sight of why they started the band in the first place. At that moment, things looked a little bleak for Gallagher.
However, his solo career has seen Gallagher reignite the fire in his belly, returning to form with a heavy dose of Britpop nostalgia. Somehow, his voice has made a miraculous comeback, too. After slowly declining for close to two decades, Gallagher is back sounding as sharp as ever before.
Here are five of his most stunning isolated vocals that prove he’s a better singer than you think to celebrate his voice.
Liam Gallagher’s best five isolated vocals:
‘Champagne Supernova’ is placed in the upper echelons of Noel Gallagher’s creations, but as the isolated vocals prove, it’s Liam that brings the song to life. His vocals are immaculate, and there’s a case to be made suggesting this is his very best effort.
It’s troublesome to listen to ‘Champagne Supernova’ without feeling gratuitous for the sheer joy of being alive. “Someday you will find me, caught beneath the landslide, in a champagne supernova in the sky,” is sempiternal and even more powerful when heard isolated.
Speaking to NME in 1995 about the song meaning, Noel explained: “It means different things when I’m in different moods. When I’m in a bad mood being caught beneath a landslide is like being suffocated. The song is a bit of an epic. It’s about when you’re young and you see people in groups and you think about what they did for you, and they did nothing.”
When people talk about Definitely Maybe in such high esteem, the fact that ‘Slide Away’ wasn’t selected as one of the seven singles released from the album speaks volumes about the rich catalogue of tunes that Oasis had to select from on their debut. In hindsight, it remains baffling that this undisputed classic was overlooked.
There’s a suffering in Liam Gallagher’s vocal delivery here, and the passion that he throws into the recording provides the track with an intimate edge that makes it feel like he’s directly singing to you.
A feeling that is amplified when heard isolated.
‘Rock ‘N’ Roll Star’
There couldn’t have been a more fitting opener to their debut, Definitely Maybe, which represented the beginning of a biblical experience, defining everything Oasis stood for within one song.
A debut album should nail down a band’s identity, yet, the Gallagher’s managed to secure their ethos to just four eternal words, ‘Rock N Roll Star’.
The anthem is delivered like a sermon by Liam, who believes in every word that he sings. Over a quarter of a century later, he’s still living by the same message that he continues to unleash into the ether.
‘Live Forever’, like a lot of Oasis’ early work, is a celebration of being present in the moment and not letting life drag you down. Most bands search their entire careers to create a track like ‘Live Forever’, and Oasis did it at the first time of asking on Definitely Maybe.
When Liam Gallagher was asked by Q in 2008 about the best Oasis song, he instantly replied with ‘Live Forever’, and explained: “I think the words still mean something powerful. You talk about Oasis capturing a spirit, and I think that song is how a lot of people feel when they’re down on their luck.”
Adding: “Even when we’re starting it now I always feel like we’re going to perform our best version of it. It makes me think of me mam. And it’s the song that makes me feel I have the best job in the band. I may not have written it but I get to sing it.”
Liam Gallagher went into his solo career with few expectations. Beady Eye had already failed, albeit by his high standards, and he even questioned if he still had a place at the musical table. In 2017, As You Were, his major comeback to mainstream music, confirmed Gallagher’s return to the stratosphere, and he was firmly back on top.
Two years later, Gallagher proved that his return was no temporary stay with his second album, Why Me? Why Not, which went down a delight with his loyal army of fans.
‘Once’ was the record’s most delicate moment, and these isolated vocals are nothing short of a triumph. If you thought Liam’s voice had spent its day in the sun, think again.