“In case you didn’t hear me the first time… it’s lovely to be in Hull!”
It’s at the 1,200 capacity Hull City Hall where Liam Gallagher finally gets his MTV Unplugged opportunity and with fans excitedly cheering and chanting his name between songs it seems that the crowd is just as up for it as he is.
Recorded from a live show last year, the album features 10 tracks from the full setlist played, being a mixture of Oasis and Gallagher’s solo work. At one-point Gallagher invited Oasis bandmate Paul “Bonehead” Arthurs onto the stage to play a live rendition of Definitely Maybe’s “Sad Song.” Other Oasis tracks include fan favourites “Some Might Say,” and “Champagne Supernova” to close out the album, as “Cast No Shadow.”
When introducing “Once” Liam pokes fun at the elephant in the room, by dedicating the song to the Oasis guitarist, who, by Liam, “gets to do MTV Unplugged twice.” Referencing himself being MIA from Oasis’ 1996 Unplugged performance due to illness, only to turn up and heckle his brother from the crowd.
Playing a stripped back set, befitting to the Unplugged style, focused around an acoustic guitar and Gallagher’s distinctive vocals. Electric instruments are swapped out for strings, provided by the 24-piece Urban Soul Orchestra, and gospel backing singers. The lively atmosphere of the gig feels far away from what you’d expect from an MTV Unplugged performance (Nirvana’s iconic, yet sombre 1993 performance comes to mind) and more like a straight up concert.
And because everything in the universe according to Liam Gallagher always comes back to Noel, he took the chance to throw shade at his older brother. Announcing via a Twitter listening party, that the performance of “One Of Us” was dedicated to him.
While the album doesn’t break new ground musically it is by no means a bad, choosing to stick to safe territory. The albums strongest moments come from songs taken from Gallagher’s most recent release Why Me? Why Not rather than the classics.With “Now That I’ve Found You,” a tender song dedicated to his formerly estranged daughter, along with “Gone,” which through the string arrangements elevating the song wonderfully, were high points of the performance.
Charming, intimate and no doubt a pleaser for hardcore fans.