Oasis ‘Definitely Maybe’ Gets 30th Anniversary Edition

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Oasis’ 1994 iconic debut, Definitely Maybe, is getting a 30th Anniversary Deluxe Edition. The expanded collection arrives August 30, 2024, via Big Brother Recordings. It features a 2014 remaster of the original album, featuring such classic cuts as “Live Forever” and “Rock ‘n’ Roll Star” plus tracks from the discarded original recording session at Monnow Valley Studios, along with outtakes recorded at Sawmills Studios in Cornwall, newly mixed for the first time by Noel Gallagher and Callum Marinho. The album also includes an unreleased 1992 demo version of “Sad Song.” Originally released as a bonus track on the LP, this alternative version features Liam Gallagher’s vocals. Listen to it below, along with a Sawmills outtake of “Columbia” and a previously unheard “Up In the Sky” from the Monnow Valley session. The new edition is available to pre-order in the U.S. here and in the U.K. here.

The package also features brand new artwork by the original art designer Brian Cannon for Microdot and original sleeve photographer Michael Spencer Jones, plus new sleeve notes from Creation Records’ Alan McGee and journalist Hamish MacBain.

From the May 2024 announcement: In August of 1994, Definitely Maybe’s release marked a critical moment in British youth culture, with Noel Gallagher’s songwriting and Oasis’ assured cacophony of sound heralding a new beginning. It embodied an entirely new mood of rock and pop – hedonistic, guitar-driven and optimistic. The U.K., soon to be unshackled from 18 years of Conservative rule, had a growing sense of change and hope in the air, and Oasis captured that mood.

The Brothers Gallagher (Photo: Paul Slattery; used with permission)

Following signing a worldwide record deal, Liam Gallagher, Noel Gallagher, Paul “Bonehead” Arthurs, Paul McGuigan and Tony McCarroll decamped to Monnow Valley Studios on the Welsh borders of Monmouthshire, to capture the kinetic energy of their live shows on record. At the time, the initial recordings felt overly technical and polished, failing to capture the essence of the band. The sessions were ultimately scrapped, and the band moved to the remote confines of Sawmills Studios in Cornwall to re-record the album. Eventually, with the addition of Owen Morris joining to complete the definitive mixes, Definitely Maybe was formed.

With its barbed lyrics rubbing shoulder to shoulder with contagious, chiming hooks, “Up In the Sky” has often been interpreted as taking aim at people putting themselves on pedestals or those making grand, political gestures. As captured by the Monnow Valley version, at the time, these recordings were felt to be overly technical and somewhat polished, at the expense of capturing the essence of the band. Noel’s mix of the song offers an insight into the juxtaposition the band could have found themselves in at the time. The sessions were ultimately abandoned, and the band moved to the remote confines of Sawmills Studios in Cornwall to re-record the album.

The Monnow Valley recordings and Sawmill outtakes, now unearthed for the first time, offer a new and compelling understanding of the process that led to the finished article. With its raw edges and restless energy, Definitely Maybe always sounded like an album that had arrived fully formed – however, the newly revealed versions provide fans with a fascinating new insight into the album; demonstrating the self-belief that drove the early years of Oasis and the determination it took to create their debut. Shelved until now, revisiting the archive 30 years on signifies the importance of the recording process in telling the story of the uneasy creation of one of the most vital albums of all time.

Newly mixed for the first time by Noel Gallagher and Marinho, “Columbia (Sawmills Outtake)” weighs in at an epic 7 minutes 18 seconds. Based around an effectively simple chord structure, its hypnotic rhythms spiral into delayed drums and droning feedback, with Noel Gallagher’s harmonies buried deeper within the mix than on Owen Morris’ final album version, where they were subsequently lifted to become one of the most beloved Oasis choruses. “Columbia” was one of the first Oasis songs to be written and was originally released on the band’s now legendary early white-label.

On release in 1994, Definitely Maybe gatecrashed the Official U.K. Album Chart at #1 and at the time became the fastest selling debut album. Sonically defining an attitude of an era, it became a soundtrack to the imminent cultural and political change of Britain in the mid-1990s.

Thirty years on, Definitely Maybe, remains an unprecedented classic. The 11 songs brim with timeless songwriting complimented by Liam’s snarling youthful and restless desire to escape. As well as the singles “Supersonic,” “Shakermaker,” “Live Forever “and “Cigarettes & Alcohol,” tracks such as “Rock ‘n’ Roll Star” and “Slide Away” have become ubiquitous global anthems. Loved by legions of fans and an inspiration for countless bands, it is as relevant as ever and continues to find new devotees in younger generations.

The album is now BPI certified 8x Platinum in the U.K., selling over six million copies globally and the second Official Most Streamed Album of the 90s in the U.K., beaten only by its successor (What’s The Story) Morning Glory?.

Definitely Maybe 30th Anniversary Deluxe Edition Track Listing

Volume 1
1. Rock ‘n’ Roll Star (Remastered)
2. Shakermaker (Remastered)
3. Live Forever (Remastered)
4. Up In The Sky (Remastered)
5. Columbia (Remastered)
6. Supersonic (Remastered)
7. Bring It On Down (Remastered)
8. Cigarettes & Alcohol (Remastered)
9. Digsy’s Dinner (Remastered)
10. Slide Away (Remastered)
11. Married With Children (Remastered)

Volume 2
1. Rock ‘n’ Roll Star (Monnow Valley Version)
2. Shakermaker (Monnow Valley Version)
3. Live Forever (Monnow Valley Version)
4. Up In The Sky (Monnow Valley Version)
5. Columbia (Monnow Valley Version)
6. Bring It On Down (Monnow Valley Version)
7. Cigarettes & Alcohol (Monnow Valley Version)
8. Digsy’s Dinner (Monnow Valley Version)
9. Rock ‘n’ Roll Star (Sawmills Outtake)
10. Up In The Sky (Sawmills Outtake)
11. Columbia (Sawmills Outtake)
12. Bring It On Down (Sawmills Outtake)
13. Cigarettes & Alcohol (Sawmills Outtake)
14. Digsy’s Dinner (Sawmills Outtake)
15. Slide Away (Sawmills Outtake)
16. Sad Song (Mauldeth Road West Demo, Nov ’92)

Related: When Noel Gallagher performed at a fan’s home

Oasis released seven studio albums. Each hit #1 in the U.K. (as did a 2008 compilation album). They also scored eight #1 U.K. singles and a remarkable 23 Top 10 hits.

Best Classic Bands Staff

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  1. TyStick
    #1 TyStick 14 June, 2024, 08:13

    Oasis are great! One of the best bands since the Beatles. They had hit after hit and Definitely Maybe’s 30th Anniversary sets them apart from any band. Noel and Liam need to put their differences aside and create more gems. They were the best band during their reign.

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