Oasis - Manchester Apollo - 11.10.01

Who'd have thought they'd still be together now? Acrimonious split after acrimonious split the band are still together albeit in a mutated form of Brothers Gallagher and three relatively unknowns. Still here ten years since that first gig and you can't help but feel that Oasis are on the verge of hitting those good times again. As Bono insists on claiming every six months "were here to reclaim our title as the Best Band in The World" and tonight Oasis certainly wiped the floor with the Irish Superstars. While Andy Bell and Gem might not add as much musically as we once would have hoped for they certainly add new life to the band. Almost like when Suede lost Bernard Butler and brought in a younger, better looking model and then topped themselves again by bring in androgyny personified Neil Codling. Lets face its Oasis in the year 2001 actually look like a band rather than Liam, his uglier older brother and three forgettable faces in the shade.

But where do you start when it comes to the tunes. You can't really fault a single one tonight (with the possible exception of "Gas Panic") and we all have our personal favourites. A semi-acoustic version of "Half The World Away" is a strange one in the fact that until the Royle Family it was just another of Noel's acoustic B-sides. In Manchester though we've taken it to our hearts and its one of the undisputed highlights of the anniversary shows. Elsewhere there's special guests aplenty whether they be invited (Johnny Marr appears for Champagne Supernova and I Am The Walrus) or gatecrashers in the form of Beckham, Giggs and selected blaggers from the United Team. No is its just me or is it slightly hypocritical for Noel to slag off Beckham for playing for the rival team when Noel left his hometown at the first opportunity.

"Hindu Times" is one of the two new tracks aired tonight and if this is an indication of the future then maybe British guitar music can rock once more. Previous reports have suggested a Kula Shaker influence but in truth this only stretches as far as a slightly indian influenced guitar riff so the Crispian Mills Fan Club needn't get their hopes up to much. Tonight proves that Oasis can more than compete with the young pups (although support act The Music give a good fight). This may have been the last chance we get to hear the old classic but the new chapter looks just as relevant.

Alex McCann