Remember the NME sponsored Blur-Oasis war of 95? Well ten years later and the record companies could have engineered another North South indie civil war, but due to some judicious scheduling we have been deprived of a potential face off between two of the gobbiest bands alive. In the North corner ladies and gentlemen we have serial bar room brawlers and returning to defend their title, Oasis. And representing us Souther puffs, the most overly self confident band since Oasis, from our very own fair city we give you: Razorlight.
Both bands are kicking new material out in the next month, Johnny Borrell's boys on Monday and the Gallagher mob in May. Why we can't see these two singles go head to head is beyond us but we're not going to forgive the spoilsports who prevented another great rock rift.
Of course band battles are utterly purile events with the music press acting as left shoulder demonic catylists, laughing as the intended victims throw feeble punches at each other like two old men trying not to fall over their walking sticks. They are of course utterly entertaining as well. There's nothing quite so amusing as watching grown men resort to playground name calling. A bit like politics really, only with better clothes.
So how do the two sides weigh up?
Well, Londonist finally managed to hear the new Oasis track, Lyla, and what do you know? It's not that bad. In fact it's really pretty good. OK, so it's not classic Oasis but it's a belter of a pop tune, all highly produced glam rock pomp stomp. Big sound, hideously catchy and a million miles away from the gritty northern pop stylings of their first albums. It's almost a song that Robbie Williams might have written had he kept hold of the Kiss leotard and scrapped the Sinatra fetish. Less standing on the shoulders of giants then and more hanging around their mid-riff. Rumour has it that Oasis will be playing a London club date soon, as will Coldplay - MTV are going to be offering the chance to win tickets.
Razorlight also draw heavily from the glam-pop cannon for their new single (and the first new material since Up All night) Somewhere Else. Kicking off with a spikey Going Underground riff it breaks into a huge dollop of Queen, stadium filling anthemic rock chorus repleat with massive production and crowd noises. It is absolute genius, drawing pop absurdity to new heights in the way that The D***ness never quite pulled off. Looks like we're going to have to pass the title to the Londoners on points.
Elsewhere in the news Canadian Rock God (and we do mean God) Neil Young is recovering from a brain aneurism, which probably means he'll probably now also be able to withstand a nuclear war; wannabe Brits The Killers and The Bravery are throwing their mascara at each other and there are a couple more gigs we think you should check out:
Also in May the real Suede (or The Tears) to the rest of us: Brett Anderson and Bernard Butler try not to argue over who's the skinniest at the Shepherd's Bush Empire on the 23rd and the Eels (with strings - we're guessing that Mark Everett really is Joe 90 after all) play a seated (boo!) Royal Festival Hall on the same night. Choices choices. Oh and you can check out some wonderful new Eels material on their site.
Of course you could always get tickets to see Dinosaur Jr play a second night at the Forum on the 9th. Because we know how much you love those guys. Even more than we do right???
And if you still have a few quid to spare we highly recommmend you check out the sublimely gorgeous JoyZipper at the ICA on the 28th of this month. Their debut American Whip was one of the most beautiful albums of last year, gentle broken melodies with the darkest of lyrics, and and from the few whispers we've heard from their new one, Heartlight Set there's plenty more in store.
Finally Katie Melua and Will Young will be playing a free concert in Trafalgar Square on the 8th May to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the liberation of Europe, VE day. Londonist wonders whether in another 60 years time there will be a concert to commemorate all those who've suffered through Will Young.