There is nothing quite like the first time. I got to see one of the bands in my pantheon live for the first time March 26. I know my pantheon is not exactly an exclusive club. I am a fanboy.
I started listening to Oasis in 1994-95. I fell in love with "Live Forever" the first time I heard it. I did not go out and buy the album right away. I remember liking the song and one day I was in a music store and I saw (What's the Story) Morning Glory? on the shelf. I picked it up and looked for "Live Forever." No such luck.
Instead of thinking they might have another album out with that song I started thinking "Live Forever" might be one of those songs with a weird title that has nothing to do with the actual words in the song. So I bought Morning Glory. I took it home. I listened to it. I liked it. "Live Forever" was nowhere to be found. I was pissed. I took the CD to a used store and traded it in on something or other. Weeks later I was in another music store, saw Definitely Maybe, saw "Live Forever" was on it, bought it, and was pleased with myself for solving the riddle.
Then I heard "Wonderwall" on the radio a few weeks later and wound up buying Morning Glory for a second time. What can I say? I am an idiot.
I remember listening to Mary Carillo talk about John McEnroe on Tony Kornheiser's old ESPN radio program. She said something that struck Kornheiser and has stayed with me. About McEncroe she said, "Everything you have ever heard about him is true." People have said a lot about McEnroe over the years. He's been praised, vilified, lauded, and mocked and everything you have ever heard about him is probably true. That seems a fair description of Oasis.
Critics have derided Oasis for being nothing more than knockoffs. They pretty well admit it and do so without seeing it as any sort of insult. They are brash and they are arrogant. They have lived the rock star clichés and remain mostly unrepentant for a lifetime of bad behavior. The band is easy to dismiss and whether they intended it to be this way or simply learned to deal with it this tendency to dismiss them has become more asset than liability. It is impossible to be as good as the Gallaghers claim they are. Critics will find something to hone in on so give them a big target. Make the caricature big enough to hide behind. It is a bit brilliant.