Remembering Oasis’ amazing performance of ‘Cigarettes & Alcohol’ in Chicago, 1994
Oasis, the Britpop band led by the dueling brothers Liam and Noel Gallagher, did what mainstream media couldn’t and stuck two fingers up to Grunge music. When they burst on to the scene in America they had something different, and it wasn’t just great songwriting built on the backs of The Beatles, it was a swagger and confidence that had been missing from American music for a while.
Bands like Mudhoney and Nirvana had avoided mainstream media, shunned the spotlight wherever possible and were content in delivering their own artistic vision. Oasis were the opposite. Yes, they were going to make great songs, their 1994 LP Definitely Maybe was a testament to that, but they weren’t going to be quiet about it.
Their opinionated and confrontational style was something American audiences hadn’t experienced for a while and these bratty Brits were about to give them all a lesson in how to get your name out there.
Fast-forward a few months down the road in 1994 and Oasis found themselves on tour in the Land of the Free. They played one particular gig, which we have found the amazingly rare footage of, that shows that they were just as confident in their ability and performance in someone else’s country as their own.
The show, at Chicago’s Metro saw the band pull out some incredible tracks from the album including ‘Rock and Roll Star’, ‘Supersonic’ as well as a classic Beatles cover of ‘I Am The Walrus’ and give US audiences a taste of ‘Cool Britannia’. One particular song stood out for us as epitomising not only the band themselves but their attitude to life and their homeland – ‘Cigarettes & Alcohol’. 25 years on the song still slaps real hard. The riffs are huge, the vocals idiosyncratic and impeccable and the band look at their swashbukling best.
Take a look at that track below and the full set below that.