Track by Track: The Band on Heathen Chemistry

The Hindu Times
Noel Gallagher: When we laid down the instrumental for The Hindu Times we went away on tour with The Black Crowes and I think it’s Gem come up with the one line. He said it’s like your favourite Oasis song ever because we were listening to it, like constantly and I didn’t have any lyrics for it and he’s going, fucking hell man it’s just like the best Oasis song ever. He said it sounds like classic Oasis and I was like sitting there thinking right weill I’m going to try now, sort of written myself off and I was going, so what do you mean by that.. You know it’s just a fucking, you know it’s a song and I was like. So I just decided to write a song that was the most optimistic that I could fucking get out of myself. So it was all like, I get up when I’m down, I can’t swim and it’s all about universal truths I think. You’re my sunshine you’re my rain, you know there is a light that shines, it shines on me. The word Hindu in the title as well I thought it’s a bit spiritual and stuff but it was Gem that unwittingly perhaps was the concept of the song. he said it’s got to be like the fucking, the best Oasis Oasis song ever. And that was that really.”

Force Of Nature
Noel Gallagher: “Yeah Force of Nature come about when we were doing Standing On The Shoulder Of Giants out in France Jude Law asked us to do a song for a film he was in called Love, Honour and Obey with Ray Winstone, Johnny Lee Miller, and Sean Pertwee and all that lot and so I went out a week early with the engineers and stuff to set up because we had this big old Chateaux. We set it up as a recording studio. So what I thought well while I’m out there I’ll just record the demo for use in this film and anyway it came out so good that we just sent them the demo and then everybody was saying, well, you know, is it going to go on Standing On The Shoulder Of Giants and at one point, because I wrote that song and Little By Little for the film. They were both supposed to be for the film but we only give them one in the end. We decided not to use it on Standing On The Shoulder Of Giants because Bonehead was leaving and we thought, well let’s keep some songs back for when we come back anyway. So we purposely kept Force Of Nature. It’s a shame. That was going to be the first single but we had a couple of days in here with Liam and it just, it’s just out of his range. It’s at the very, very top of mine and I can just about hit the notes live as well so.”

Hung in a Bad Place
Gem: “Hung in a Bad Place came about, me, Noel and Andy B were in there with Noel on drums and we were just having an afternoon of it really and he went, you got any songs? And we were just throwing stuff around and I think I must have played like three or something. I was singing I was at Madison Square Gardens in my head and he went, yea, that’s the one. We’ll do that one. From then on in it was, well okay, played it to Liam in here on the acoustic. We had a right laugh at a few of the words and then that was it really. We just sort of dug into it, you know, and I’m more than chuffed with the results.”

Stop Crying Your Heart Out
Noel Gallagher: “Well the day that we started recording the album here, we was.. we were all upstairs and I’ll get to the title don’t worry.. We were all upstairs and Stan was down there setting up a drum sound or something and we were watching something on telly, I can’t remember what it was, and I’d just written the melody and the tune about 2 or 3 nights before and, as it is when you get into the studio, we always like.. it’s like and everyone was like shall we start on the first one and I said yeah let’s fucking listen to this one. But I didn’t have any words and I just sat down and I just hummed it and there was silence after I’d finished and everyone was like, you just written that? I said I wrote it last night. So we done a quick demo, made up some lyrics on the spot and then, you know, it’s a conversation between a parent and a child or should I say between a child and a parent is what it is. And I didn’t want it to be the second single because I think that we always fall into the trap of, well, let’s get a big ballad out, you know fucking shift some units. I wanted Force Of Nature to be the second single but I got sat down and talked around by the management. He said, look you know, what are you pissing about for? Put out your fucking best songs first. So I said oh alright as long as Force of Nature was gonna be as single. That was one of the most interesting songs. As soon as people heard it they just looked and each other and were you know. I think hopefully anyway, it will be. Hopefully that will bring the album into millions of people’s front rooms as opposed to, you know. The last album was sold purely on a fan base level. I mean there wasn’t really many what you call big hit singles like Go Let It Out was a hit all over the world really but that was about it. Hopefully this will do the same as Wonderwall did to the last one you know. People will hear that but the album and then subsequently go and tell their friends about it, a cross over track as they call it.”

Songbird
Liam Gallagher: “I was in France really just having a wonderful time. No one around mithering me, do you know what I mean? Just fucking went for a walk with my acoustic. Sat under the tree. Nice song and that. There was me and no one. There was no band because it was that time people were leaving. I thought oh fuck it, I am going for a walk. I just started melodising and then away we went. I wrote it in about 10 minutes. So that’s that.”

Little By Little
Noel Gallagher: “It’s a shame ‘cos that would have made it extra, extra special. When it came to him (recording the vocals) you could see he was going, ‘I’m not going to fucking get it.’ And we were all willing him to get it. I went in and did a version and you could see he was sat at the desk going, ‘Fucking bastard. He’s got it.’ But he doesn’t want to do anything that’s shit. This album, all of it had to be the bollocks. All of it had to be worthy of us fucking carrying on making records. This is a contender for the third single. ‘True perfection has to be imperfect’. I love that line. I think it’s very Zen Buddhist; I must have been smoking pot that time.”

A Quick Peep
Gem: “This was a period when there was a lot of acoustic guitar happening before and after gigs. We had a big, long journey over the Alps and me and Andy just played guitar for about five hours.”

(Probably) All in the Mind
“Me and Andy Bell. We were up here what were we doing, I’ll tell you what we were doing a session with Paul Weller playing bass and drums on one of his tracks from his new album called One Times One and he shot off because he said. It was 2 in the afternoon and he said what are you doing for the rest of the day? It was like nothing. I’m not even going to get in and fucking record a new song with him being around, you know what I mean because it’ll get past the first chord and he’ll go it’s fucking rubbish you’re not going to record that are you. So he shot off and I said to Andy stick around man and play some guitar. I got this tune called All In The Mind it was called then and we done the demo in about an hour and a half and the way the title came about, he said, what’s it going to be called and I said probably All In The Mind and he went Probably All In The Mind? And I went well no it’s actually; All In The Mind but Probably All In The Mind sounds better so we put the probably in brackets.”

She is Love
Noel Gallagher: “It’s no secret it’s about Sarah my girlfriend. We got up one Sunday morning, the sun was shining and it was just. And I’d been listening to Sweetpea by Paul Weller off Heliocentric and I thought I’m going to write a love song about somebody I love with and I’m actually going to do it, because I hate using the word love and I hate all that shit and I thought, well fuck it, I’m not 24, I’m 35 now, you know what I mean? I can probably get away with it now. You know, and then it literally just fucking come out in about 10 minutes and I wasn’t scared of the last line now I Know that I’m… All I know is I’m in love with someone who loves me too. Like 3 or 4 years ago I wouldn’t have sung that. You fucking knob jockey fucking nuts. What are you on about? That was like fuck off. I’ve broken 35 now. I’ll do what I fucking want. I can wear chunky sweaters and have fucking golden retrievers and they can’t touch me for it because I’m officially middle-aged.”

Born On A Different Cloud
Liam Gallagher: “Born On A Different Cloud. Well that was in France playing a piano. Same again I don’t really play that much. Only chords and that and I thought and the melody come and I wrote the words. I don’t know where it comes from but what I wrote was like I had read this book, Living On Borrowed Time, by Frederick Seeman. That is probably the only book I have ever read and it was like living on borrowed time, born on a different cloud that was where it all came from.”

Better Man
“Better Man. I wanted a groove more instead of a song. Not so many words. Just hitting it like don’t want to be a soldier like that. Like Plastic Ono. That was it.”