7 Oasis Songs That Sound Punk

There has always been a debate about Oasis’s style of music.

Although often referred to as ‘Rock N Roll’ (by Liam Gallagher himself no less) the group’s sound isn’t actually that similar to that of 1950’s guitar bands who made the classic genre so popular.

In fact the majority of their work is best described as Rock. On numerous occasions Oasis produce a track with that signature Wall Of Sound, using the basic electric instruments (rhythm guitar, lead guitar and bass) and coupled with a natural drum beat - then they are making rock music.

On occasion their acoustic tunes could even be defined as indie or soft rock.

But did you know that Oasis have a number of punk style songs in their back catalogue?

Sprinkled throughout their discography are numbers with a faster tempo, more aggressive playing style and often a certain sleazy swagger that launches you back to that 1970’s period of guitar music made famous by the likes of The Sex Pistols. 

Here are some Oasis songs that can be considered Punk:

Below I go into more detail about each track and discuss its origins, why it sounds like a punk song and even pick my personal favourite live performance of each tune.

Fade Away (1994)


Fade Away is a survivor from early 1994 demos and eventually made it on the setlist of Definitely Maybe live shows as the band’s reputation quickly grew throughout that year. The song appeared as a B-side on Oasis’s fourth single from their debut album - Cigarettes and Alcohol.

Why Fade Away By Oasis Sounds Punk

The song has a drive to it that many of Oasis’s slower Madchester numbers around that time period don’t. It is a concise and upbeat tune. Fade Away’s faster style in both it’s drumbeat and strumming pattern gives it a real bite. Much of the lead guitar is beautifully erratic and relentless. Its lyrics aren’t as strange and obscure as many early Oasis tracks and this realism gives it a gritty vibe. The chorus lines repeat several times which are almost a chant-like.

Favourite Live Performance

I love the live version of Fade Away from their 1994 U.S tour and in particular the show in New York. The sound created at this gig is epic and Fade Away is performed with such power.

Listen to it live here


Bring It On Down (1994)


Bring It On Down stands out as one of Oasis’s most punk-like tracks. The song rose to popularity as early as 1993 - even forming part of the famous King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut gig where the band were first spotted by Creation Records' Alan McGee. 

Why Bring It On Down By Oasis Sounds Punk

The song is perhaps the rawest of Oasis’s entire collection. The now iconic drumbeat at the beginning of the track, Bonehead’s thrashing rhythm guitar and a snarling vocal performance from Liam all combine to form a tune that would comfortably feature on a Sex Pistols record.

Favourite Live Performance

I adore this rendition of Bring It On Down. This video comes from a gig at the Astoria in London (1994) Everytime I Watch I’m amazed by the performance quality. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e_3UKBNe6K8 

Cigarettes And Alcohol (1994)


Most Oasis fans are aware of the track's roots in Glam rock with Noel Gallagher 'lifting' the riff to T-Rex's Get It On to use as an intro. Unlike some of the other songs on this list - Cigarettes and Alcohol rose quickly to become a fan favourite.

Why Cigarettes and Alcohol By Oasis Sounds Punk

Cigarettes and Alcohol has become a youth anthem since it's release in 1994 thanks in part to its punk influences. The lyrical content of the song directly talks to the average working fan and addresses life struggles that the masses experience themselves.

The famous line "is it worth the aggravation to find yourself a job when there's nothing worth working for" perfectly captures the mood of many listeners of any time period and almost has a feel of rebelling against the establishment.

Favourite Live Performance

This version of the song is from the band’s appearance on Jules Holland in 2000. The performance is so strong here and one of my favourties from that particular time.


Headshrinker (1994)


In my opinion Headshrinker doesn’t get enough attention or credit as it should. It is a fantastic punk song and undoubtedly one of the heaviest rock tunes Noel Gallagher has ever written. It captures Oasis in full flow and features as a B-side on Some Might Say.

Why Headshrinker By Oasis Sounds Punk

The sheer speed of this song is a clear sign of its punk credentials. From the moment Headshrinker begins -  its pace is incredible and only made more hectic by Liam's ranting vocals. His vocal performance is pure quality and drives home that feeling of rebellion. 

Favourite Live Performance

A hidden gem of a performance comes from Oasis’s 1995 show in Philadelphia. The footage is fairly rare. Their version of the song here is unbelievable. 

My Big Mouth (1997)


I love this song. My Big Mouth doesn't get enough recognition as one of Oasis's great punk inspired creations. Originally introduced to fans during the summer of 1996 - memorably unveiled at high profile performances including Knebworth - the tune went on to become a real highlight of Be Here Now.

Why My Big Mouth By Oasis Sounds Punk

My Big Mouth contains probably the fastest chord changes Noel Gallagher has ever crafted. The song sounds epic; from an explosive start it rips through five minutes of bundles of intense energy and incredibly memorable lyrics.

Favourite Live Performance

There aren’t many live versions of My Big Mouth to choose from - but the best is still that debut performance at Knebworth - with the band on top form and the song itself sounding amazing.


Eyeball Tickler (2005)


Eyeball Tickler is a great B-side found on the Lyla single but is something of an unknown to some Oasis fans. Although it would likely struggle to feature in a list of the band’s top 50 songs - the fact remains that it is a brilliant tune. Written by Gem Archer - the track feels fresh and extra edgy compared to many of the band’s songs around that time.

Why Eyeball Tickler By Oasis Sounds Punk

This song is a riot from beginning to end. From its opening clanging bar chords it carries on driving forward with layers of electric guitar and distortion. I especially enjoy the ranting style of the words throughout the song. 

Favourite Live Performance

This song was never performed live. But there is a great demo that shows how raw this tune really is.


The Meaning Of Soul (2005)


As one of three Liam Gallagher songs on Don’t Believe The Truth, this tune stands out due to its length - clocking in at 1.42 and also its simplicity. Liam describes the song as ‘a spit’ - a snappy and aggressive addition to Oasis’s sixth studio album.

Why The Meaning Of Soul By Oasis Sounds Punk

The drums in this track provide the foundations for a song with true attack. It was created by fixing a box of cereal to then Oasis drummer Zak Starkey’s drum kit and then asking him to strike it with wooden spoons. This made the percussion track automatically sound full of character. The song sounds hectic throughout but the chaos you hear only adds to the punk vibe.

Favourite Live Performance

In 2008 Oasis played an intimate pre-festival gig in London called ‘Standing On The Edge Of The Noise’ - and produced this sensational performance of The Meaning Of Soul.