Noel Gallagher on This Is The Place, Black Star Dancing and Sail On

Noel Gallagher on This Is The Place, Black Star Dancing and Sail On

What is This Is The Place about?

“What’s it about? What’s the key lyric? ‘The road is long and I keep losing my way.’ I guess it’s about the journey of life, and finding a place. I like to visualise everything.

So, in my head, it is going to be the first song in the set, and in every town you’re going to say ‘This is the place. Where we are tonight.’ So, it is a song about being in the moment,” he explains, “and how it came to be called This Is The Place is I had the chorus up until the line that said ‘this is the place’ and I was thinking, ‘What could go there?’. I was going to bed one night and the Manchester poet Tony Walsh’s book This Is The Place was beside my bed, “and I was like: ‘F**king hell. It fits.’ And I called Tony the next day and I said, ‘Am I right using this title?’. He was like, ‘Absolutely, mate.’”

The title is taken from Walsh’s poem/ode to Manchester, after the suicide bombing at the Manchester Arena on May 22, 2017, in which 22 adults and children were killed, and also left 120 injured.

“The track has a Hacienda vibe,” he says.

When I heard first I was thinking Thieves Like Us, vintage New Order.

“A lot of people have said that about Black Star Dancing as well,” Noel says in reference to the previous single. “One of the tracks on the new EP sounds like the Smiths, not early Smiths but like vintage Queen Is Dead-era Smith. There is another one which is just a groover, which Tony Walsh is going to be reciting some poetry over the top of it.”

Kind of ‘Oh! Take me back to dear old Blighty’ from the title track of The Queen Is Dead?

“It’s more like…Tune-wise, it’s just a feeling which is like The Smiths to me.”

Sail On from the previous EP has a feeling of being free to it.

“Listen, that song I recorded for Chasing Yesterday [his 2016 solo album] and it has actually blown me away the reaction. I had that lying around and I thought, ‘That will do. The fourth track on a f**ing EP. That’ll do.’ But as soon as people heard it was like, ‘F**king hell. This song!’ I was like, ‘Really? It doesn’t even go any where. It is amazing what people think. It is one of the very few times when my instincts have been wrong about a song. I was just like, ‘It’s f***ing not great. It’s alright.’

Who was telling you the song was great?

“The girls in the band. Then it went up on the internet, and everyone was saying, ‘Oh, people are going mad for it.’ I was blown away actually by it. It’s funny, isn’t it?”

The groove of Black Star Dancing is incredible.

“That’s writing on the bass. When I started to pick guitars on stuff it sounds too melodic, too emotive. That was the good thing about working with David Holmes. He who would just say, ‘There’s too much emotion in it. We need to get right back to the root notes of this kind of thing.’ I guess what’s going to happen in the next couple of years… I’d say that working with David was a catalyst for some huge change. Huge. He made me realise that, you know, ‘Why have you got guitars on everything? Why do we start there? Why don’t we just start with the bass?’. I never realised what a great bass player I was until I met him.” [Laughs.]

Some quotes from Noel Gallagher on his new music register to read the full article here for free.