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Page last updated at 09:26 GMT, Monday, 8 June 2009 10:26 UK
Oasis make Manchester comeback

By Greg Cochrane
Newsbeat music reporter

Oasis' first gig at Heaton Park was held up by a technical hitch

When Oasis do something, they do it in style.

Whether that's Noel Gallagher swaggering into Downing Street in 1997, or Liam attacking Gordon Ramsay's "bobbins sweet potato" on the F-Word.

Everything is done with Mancunian class.

Almost two decades on they're still doing it - backstage at Heaton Park there's a football pitch, two sparkling Porches and a purpose built nightclub.

Just a day before - the first break on the tour, which culminates in three nights at Wembley Stadium in July - Liam Gallagher took friends and support band Kasabian for a country drive, in his helicopter.

"We had some dinner by a lake - a good chat, a good catch up, it was great," says guitarist Serge Pizzorno early in the afternoon.

"Seeing England from a helicopter is kind of strange as well, you get a real of sense of where you're from and the nation."

Kasabian recently performed at Radio 1's Big Weekend

Saturday - the second of 3 nights at Heaton Park - is the tour's proper kick off following a faulty generator which forced the headliners offstage on the first night.

To make matters worse, The Enemy, slayed by food poisoning, pulled out all together.

"I was becoming intimately acquainted with my bathroom floor," admits lead singer Tom Clarke.

"It gave a night on the tiles a whole different meaning."

Sufficient confidence

Clear of mishaps, Saturday begins with a turn from newcomers Free Peace and Twisted Wheel, both showcasing sufficient confidence to warm the drizzle soaked crowd.

Back to full strength The Enemy are determined to make up for their personal false start.

It'd be amazing to do it in Leicester one day, that city would never have seen anything like it
Kasabian's Serge Pizzorno on doing a supergig

It's an enviable arsenal of tunes the Coventry rockers have now, Away From Here, Had Enough and No Time For Tears sparking the first mass pogo-ing of the day.

Meanwhile, camp Kasabian is arguably in the fittest shape it's ever been.

With new single Fire debuting in the top 3 of the charts and new LP West Pauper Ryder Lunatic Asylum seeing them stake their claim on Oasis' popular rock crown, Tom Meighan and co are on devastating form.

Theirs is an almost faultless hour exercise in toned-rock - Shoot The Runner, LSF and opener Vlad The Impaler.

"It'd be amazing to do it in Leicester one day," says Serge beforehand. "That city would never have seen anything like it."

Don't bet against it.


Oasis though remain untouchable.

Whilst the five-some rarely break a sweat during two hours of hits, their cruise-control is better than most other band's best efforts.

Liam, in a green anorak, is a statue of cool, as is Noel, dryly acknowledging the crowd.

Resigned to the fact the fans want the old stuff, four songs are played off latest LP Dig Out Your Soul as they stack up the crowd pleasers.

The Enemy
The Enemy finally made an appearance after Tom Clarke fell ill

Opener Rock 'N' Roll Star, Roll With It, The Masterplan, Morning Glory, Live Forever, Supersonic, Don't Look Back In Anger and Wonderwall are all greeted with mud splattered abandon.

As for the Gallaghers - it's not that there's a palpable atmosphere between Liam and Noel (according to reports their recent South American tour saw relations once again become strained) it's the lack of any atmosphere at all.

Still, the important thing is it's 70,000 jubilant fans they're eye-balling and not each other.

Wrapping things up with an obvious homage (The Beatles' I Am The Walrus), a sodden Heaton Park doesn't leave just in fine voice - but without any voice at all.

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