Oasis’ “Cigarettes & Alcohol” Meaning and Facts

“Cigarettes & Alcohol” by Oasis

  • Release Date: 10 October 1994
  • Album: Definitely Maybe
  • Writers: Noel Gallagher
  • Interesting Fact: The riff is influenced by T. Rex’s “Get It On”.
  • Meaning: A raw portrayal of working-class youth, looking for escapism through vices.

Iconic Riff: The song’s main riff bears a resemblance to T. Rex’s “Get It On.” While some pointed out this similarity as a potential influence, Oasis was known for wearing their influences on their sleeves.

Statement of Intent: Lyrically, the song encapsulates the hedonistic attitude of the ’90s youth in Britain, with lines like “Is it my imagination, or have I finally found something worth living for?” and the proclamation that cigarettes and alcohol are the answer.

Chart Performance: Released in 1994 as the fourth single from their debut album “Definitely Maybe”, “Cigarettes & Alcohol” was the band’s first top 10 hit, peaking at number 7 on the UK Singles Chart. It heralded the band’s forthcoming dominance in the mid to late ’90s.

Cultural Impact: The song is often cited as one of the anthems of the ’90s Britpop movement. It’s raw, unapologetic, and rebellious, echoing the sentiments of a generation looking for escapism.

Inspiration from Real Life: In various interviews, Noel Gallagher has mentioned that the song was a reflection of his life at the time. Before the band’s success, he often felt disillusioned with the mundanity of everyday life, and the song’s lyrics capture that sentiment of seeking more.

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