Words: Lindsay Bradley
It is coming up to ten years since the fateful Oceanic flight 815 crash, with Drive Shaft bassist Charlie Pace on board. Since then, Drive Shaft has released a greatest hits album and a tour to accompany it. Everyone seems to have fond memories of the band, yet very few were actually part of it.
The Manchester band shot to fame in 2000 with their radio friendly hit 'You All Everybody' taken from their moderately successful self-titled debut. Two years later, they released their second album Oil Change with very little fanfare. In fact, very little was mentioned of the album and it was not until I was looking through Poundland that I saw the album on sale. It was only a pound and I was bored. Since the plane crash a few writers like myself, decided to revisit the album. Spin.com has actually compared the album to Weezer’s Pinkerton as a ‘lost classic’. No pressure then lads.
From hearing the first notes of the opening track ‘Vent’, I knew I had made a terrible mistake. Lead singer Liam attempts to croon sorrowfully with hardly the most imaginative lyrics, ‘Well I fell into a terrible lie / It seems my life was passing me by’. It was only the first song yet I already wanted to commit murder (half-kidding).
Through perseverance, it does get slightly better; ‘Ask me Again’ provides an indie-pop outlook to the Hollywood life. The catchy guitar hook teamed with the relentless percussion carried the lyrics well. ‘The door revolves, you’ve got to spin.’ This lyric signifies Drive Shaft’s short-lived career. It might have been a hit for the radio, but it was not meant to be.
The final track ‘Last Call’ should have been a poignant close to the album. Hearing Liam and Charlie sing ‘I wanna go home now’ is somewhat emotional, but I imagine hearing it back twelve years ago would have been painful for all the wrong reasons. There is nothing more displeasing than hearing grown men wail and attempt to imitate Chris Cornell and fail miserably.
The album could have been worse - Drive Shaft no longer sounds like a cheap copy of Oasis. It is clear that they had tried to come up with a new sound but by this point, it was too late. Drive Shaft will forever be remembered as one-hit wonders thanks to ‘You All Everybody’.
Digging through the past can sometimes unearth gems, but in the case of Oil Change, some things should just stay buried.
Oxford Road Rating: ★
Why did Oasis never sue for this blatant rip off?