Oasis Promise Return To Upbeat, Tuneful Rock

No more ballads, lead guitarist Noel Gallager insists.

For their next album, Oasis are plotting a return to the nasty guitars, hummable hooks and upbeat spirit of their 1994 debut, Definitely Maybe, according to the band's lead guitarist and songwriter, Noel Gallagher.

The band is halfway done recording the new disc, which Gallagher said he hopes to release by next spring, with a single out by the end of this year.

"There isn't no f---ing rock ballads [on the new album], which I think we slipped into a bit too much over the years — probably because we're getting old," Gallagher said recently. "It's all very heavy and energetic and uptempo rock music with tunes." (RealAudio excerpt of Interview)

Oasis have already decided on the first single from the album, even though they haven't written any lyrics for it or given it a title. The song, Gallagher said, "evolved out of me pissing around with a lot of effects pedals — so I wrote a song around a guitar riff for the first time."

A contender for a second single also doesn't have a title, Gallagher said, describing it as glam-rock and "a bit of a stomper."

Other new tracks include "Shout It Out Loud," which boasts a "Neil Young-meets-Oasis" sound, an emotion-packed song called "She Is Love" and "Born on a Different Cloud," a "long and epic" rocker penned by singer Liam Gallagher, Noel's brother.

Liam and the two newest members of the band — guitarist Gem Archer and bassist Andy Bell — are all contributing songs to the new album, according to Noel, who has monopolized Oasis' songwriting process until now. Liam made his songwriting debut with "Little James," a track on the band's most recent album, last year's Standing on the Shoulder of Giants, which added drum loops and other electronic elements to their sound.

"Basically, it's four songwriters doing their own thing, and luckily for us it all sounds like it should — it sounds like Oasis," Gallagher said. "At the moment, the album isn't swinging wildly from f---ing rock and roll to country to blues to f---ing space jazz to dance music."

Bringing in songs from the band's other members is a necessary step, the guitarist said: "I don't write as many songs as I used to."

But even if his songwriting muse has quieted somewhat, Gallagher said his enthusiasm for the band is undimmed. "It feels like we're an underground band starting off again, even though we're obviously not. It actually feels like this is a first record." (RealAudio excerpt of Interview)

Gallagher walked off a European tour last summer after an argument with his brother, but he said that their often contentious relationship has cooled down — more or less.

"We still f---ing hate each other," he said, laughing.

Oasis kicked off their Tour of Brotherly Love with the Black Crowes in Las Vegas on Friday, and as promised Noel joined the Crowes to jam on cover tunes (see "Oasis' Noel Gallagher Promises Jam With Black Crowes"). The tour will continue in Englewood, Colorado, on Thursday.