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Sorry Toronto, Noel Gallagher Doesn’t Like Your Fuckin’ Flip-Flops

The ex-Oasis front man and his High Flying Birds played the hits, flipped everyone off, and swore at children in Toronto last night

All photos courtesy of Matt Williams

This article originally appeared on Noisey Canada.

It didn’t take long for Noel Gallagher to show his abrasive side during his show on a sunny downtown Toronto Sunday at the Sony Centre. Two songs in, he stepped back from the mic for a short break, stared down someone near the front of the stage, and flipped them the bird. It would only be the first of many birds flipped, as he posed for smartphone snaps by giving almost anyone who asked the finger, eventually becoming tired of the whole thing, huffing, “it’s not a photo shoot.”


For the most part, Gallagher encouraging the audience to fuck off is a decent way to explain the general vibe of the night. The first time he addressed the audience came after the fourth tune, exclaiming that “it’s the first time I’ve been to your wonderful city when the fuckin’ sun’s out.” That led to maybe the most glorious moment of the night, when he viciously berated some dude for wearing flip-flops. He took one opportunity between songs to talk to a small child in the front row, asking “how old are you? Six? Ten?! The fuck are you doin’ here?” After some more mumbled conversation he turned his attention to the “father” who brought the kid. “You tight bastard, buy him a T-shirt! You fuckin’… buy him a T-shirt! The experience isn’t complete without a T-shirt.” Turns out it wasn’t actually the kid’s dad. After a few more songs and a giant audience feel-in with the massive Oasis hit “Champagne Supernova” (still not sure what the hell that is), the story came full circle as he looked back down at the front row: “Somebody bought you a T-shirt! Fuck me, that’s amazing.”

As rough around the edges as Gallagher is—all the swearing, the fuck-off sneer, and the fact that, as he pointed out, he’s probably been in fights a lot worse than Pacquiao vs. Mayweather—he’s still the guy who basically invented brit-pop, and it’s easy to hear how much of a veteran he is. The audience was on its feet from the first note. The songs were sharp but not excruciatingly polished-sounding, as some old rockers can fall victim to. Don’t get it twisted—the songs sound incredibly rehearsed—but Gallagher just doesn’t seem capable of sounding overwhelmingly like his recorded songs on stage, and that’s a good thing. And really, it’s kind of nice to see the self-declared “last true rock star” act like your shitty drunk uncle who’s probably bitching about something at the pub right now.

After rolling through “If I Had a Gun…”, the band just walked off stage without saying anything. Of course, they came back for an encore, featuring “The Masterplan” and “AKA… What a Life!”. Thankfully, Gallagher had a callback up his sleeve, and just before they shut the night down, he once again turned his attention to the least fashionable audience member, snarling, “guys with flip-flops. Fuck off.” He explained it was a bad call to buy tickets to both nights in Toronto, revealing it would be the exact same show: “if you’re not coming tomorrow, you’re not missing a fuckin’ thing.” Then, with a kind thank you, he banged out “Don’t Look Back In Anger” as and left the audience to belt out the chorus by themselves—which they did, so loud that they almost drowned out the band.

Matt Williams doesn’t like your fucking flip-flops, either. - @MattGeeWilliams