Don't Believe the Truth (Epic)

Don't believe the hype on Don't Believe the Truth, which old-school Britpop boosters are calling Oasis' comeback album -- the one where the Manchester-born band jettisons the bloat and boredom of its past several albums and gets back to the grand and dirty rock of its first two.

The Gallagher brothers -- singer Liam and guitarist Noel -- are still too in love with the feel of their own bombast to make Truth throb with the swagger that motored "Cigarettes and Alcohol" and "Wonderwall" so long ago. Cuts like "Lyla," the album's first single, simply vamp on one or two chords for four or five minutes, sounding great (thanks to producer Dave Sardy's hard-edged polish), but signifying none of the young-man-in-an-old-world drama of Oasis' old hits. And though it's nothing new, the lyrics remain total rubbish: "Let's go find a rainbow," Liam actually sings in "Guess God Thinks I'm Abel," making you long for one of Franz Ferdinand's sexy nightlife missives. Still, there are highlights here: "Love Like a Bomb" and "The Importance of Being Idle" are back-to-back blasts of loopy psych-pop. Their shaggy guitars and shambling grooves conjure a future in which the Gallaghers dole out low-ambition tripadelica for kids too young to remember "Champagne Supernova."

More by Mikael Wood


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