If you know your British music history then you will be aware of the iconic status of Knebworth in the history books. In August 1996, two brothers and their band performed two shows in front of a combined audience of quarter of a million fans and the rest, as they say, is history. The band was Oasis, the brothers were Noel and Liam Gallagher.
Forward the clocks some twenty two years and one of those brothers, Liam, returned to the hallowed turf for two shows in front of a combined audience of 170,000 fans. ‘Knebworth 22’ is your opportunity to relive those gigs. Or listen to what you missed. Capturing a sixteen song set list combined of Liam’s own solo material and some of the biggest songs in British music, ‘Knebworth 22’ perfectly documents these legendary shows.
From the moment he strides out and briefly greets the huge crowd, Gallagher has this audience in the palm of his hand. With the singer content to let the songs do the talking, there are moments throughout the album where you can hear the crowd singing along through the mix. “Hello” and “Rock ‘N’ Roll Star” kick off the set – the opener complete with Gallagher announcing “it’s good to be back” a lyric which couldn’t be more fitting for the shows, the latter, laced with Gallagher attitude.
As for the rest of the show, where do you start? From Gallagher’s brilliant solo material like “Wall of Glass”, “Everything’s Electric”, a track co-written with Dave Grohl, to the wealth of Oasis tracks like “Roll It Over” and “Slide Away”, the track listing on ‘Knebworth 22’ is simply faultless.
However, all roads lead to the final six tracks on the collection as the encores kick off with “Some Might Say” and see the Mancunian and his band power through unforgettable renditions of “Cigarettes & Alcohol”, “Supersonic”, “Wonderwall” and “Live Forever” before wrapping up with a sublime performance of “Champagne Supernova.”
Captured in all it’s glory, ‘Knebworth 22’ is the best possible record of those shows bar actually being there but how do you sum it up in one sentence? Easy. You let the man himself have the final word: “So we recorded the Knebworth gigs we did last year. We all sound Biblical, turn it up ENJOY, LGx.”
“Knebworth 22” is available in various formats from the Official Liam Gallagher Webstore.