Before they became U.K. rock legends, Oasis‘ Liam Gallagher and the Stone Roses‘ John Squire were just two kids from Manchester. The longtime friends have teamed for what appears to be a full collaborative album, although for now, the only announced music is the single “Just Another Rainbow,” which will be released on Jan. 5.
“More new music to follow as the year unfolds, and there could well be shows, too,” a press release stated. A snippet of the track can be heard on Squire’s Instagram page.
The collaboration will come as no surprise to ardent U.K. rock fans, as Gallagher’s first concert was a 1989 Stone Roses gig in Manchester at age 16. They met for the first time in 1993 at a Welsh recording studio while Oasis was recording Definitely Maybe and the Roses were tracking what would become their farewell album, Second Coming. The pair later co-wrote “Love Me and Leave Me,” which appeared on the 1997 debut album by Squire’s post-Roses band the Seahorses.
Their creative juices appear to have been rekindled following Squire’s guest appearance at Gallagher’s June concert at Knebworth, where they performed Oasis’ “Champagne Supernova.” Afterward, Squire sent Gallagher three in-progress songs, which led to sessions at Squire’s studio in Macclesfield, U.K., and another with top producer Greg Kurstin (Foo Fighters, Adele) in Los Angeles. There, Kurstin contributed bass to the tracks, while former R.E.M./Beck drummer Joey Waronker manned the kit.
“To me, the most obvious take on ‘Just Another Rainbow’ is that it’s about disappointment, and the sentiment is that you never get what you really want,” says Squire, 61. “But I don’t like to explain songs. I think that’s the privilege of the listener — it’s whatever you want it to be. To me, it’s also one of the most uplifting tracks we’ve made together, which is weird.”
Adds Gallagher, 51, “Everyone always bangs on about him as a guitarist, but he’s a top songwriter too, man, no two ways about it as far as I’m concerned. There’s not enough of his music out there, whether it’s with the Roses or himself. It’s good to see him back writing songs and fucking good ones. The melodies are mega and then the guitars are a given. But I think even when you take all the fucking guitars off, you can play the songs all on acoustic and they’ll all still blow your mind.”
Stone Roses broke up in 1996, reformed in 2011 and split again six years later, while Oasis has been inactive since 2009 despite long-simmering rumors of a reunion. If Squire and Gallagher take to the stage at some point in 2024, they’ll be working around the latter’s previously announced tour in support of the 30th anniversary of Definitely Maybe, which begins June 2.