Stop The Clocks is an album by British rock band Oasis made up of Oasis' favourite songs and moments of their career so far and was released on November 20 2006. “Unlike most albums of this nature, Oasis have sat down and undertaken the almost impossible job of picking what they consider to be their finest moments ever. So 'Stop The Clocks' is imbued with the sort of willfulness that has helped make Oasis the favourite band of millions of people worldwide and its running order will no doubt provoke equal parts adulation and bar discussions from the millions of Oasis fans worldwide. Could it ever be any other way?” . It released in November 2006. The "retrospective collection" is an 18-track double album with the featured songs chosen by Noel Gallagher. It went 3x platinum in the UK with sales as good as any album there since Be Here Now.
The album has come about due to the end of Oasis' recording contract with Sony BMG Music Entertainment. Noel Gallagher has gone on record before on numerous occasions saying that Oasis wouldn't release a greatest hits album unless the band were about to split up. However, in an interview with news.com.au in December 2005, he hinted that Sony were planning to release one anyway, and that despite his misgivings, he would have to get involved with it otherwise it'd be "shit". This was clarified in September 2006, when he told the NME that when he made it clear to Sony that the band were not going to re-sign to them, the record label decided to release a greatest hits album. Gallagher then explained that he insisted that it had to be a 'best-of' because he felt a compilation of the best singles, album tracks and b-sides would produce a stronger album than a compilation of singles.
To address some fans' concerns that the release of a greatest hits album was a sign that the band were about to finish, based on some of Noel Gallagher's previous comments, the press release for the album confirmed that they are merely taking "a well earned sabbatical prior to starting work on new material, destined for similar levels of success in the future. As such, this is not a full stop, but merely a time out; a dream set list, and a chance for the world to review the immense contribution that Oasis have made and continue to make to rock 'n' roll."
To celebrate the release of the album, the band will be unveiling their first full-length film - Lord Don't Slow Me Down, shot during the Don't Believe the Truth world tour, from May 2005 to March 2006, the film was shown in November 2006 around the world in selected picture houses, theatres and cinemas to winners of fans competitions and the press. It was also broadcasted on Channel 4 in the UK.
The album debuted at #2 in the UK charts selling over 50,000 copies in its first day of release and 216,000 in its first week of release, surprisingly not selling enough to knock off the top spot to The Love Album, by the boy-band Westlife. It also debuted at #89 on the U.S. Billboard 200, starting with 18,000 units sold. It did however enter the Japanese Oricon album charts at #1, selling 87,462 copies in its first week.
In Japan, a box set was also released of all their singles to coincide with the album.
Stop the Clocks focuses heavily on the band's most popular albums, Definitely Maybe and (What's the Story) Morning Glory?, with each contributing five tracks, plus four B-sides (also included on the band's other compilation album The Masterplan) from this era. Only two tracks appear from Don't Believe the Truth, and one track each from Standing on the Shoulder of Giants and Heathen Chemistry, whilst Be Here Now is overlooked completely.
When the release of Stop the Clocks was first announced in July 2006, speculation was rife that the unreleased song of the same name would be included on the record as a bonus track. However, Noel Gallagher told fans at a Q&A session that the song was considered for inclusion, but they weren't happy with any of the many versions they have recorded.
Gallagher also confirmed that the title was chosen to sum up what was described in the initial press release as being "merely a time out; a chance for the world to review the immense contribution that Oasis have made and continue to make to rock 'n' roll." Noel Gallagher revealed in an interview in April 2005 that 'Stop the Clocks' was the original title for the band's early recorded material in early 2004, which turned eventually into Don't Believe the Truth.
Gallagher revealed to Billboard that he was approached about including some new songs on the album as well, but that he opted not to "because it takes the focus away from what you're actually trying to say with a retrospective."
Gallagher told the NME in September 2006 that he picked the tracks on the album, and there were about eight songs that "should be on there, but aren't". He explained that his original vision was for a 12-track album on one CD, but, after whittling down from an initial 30+ tracks, the track-listing was finalised. He admitted that he's had arguments with people about the tracklisting but that "someone has to pick the tracklisting, and I've picked it and that's the end of it. But that must mean we're pretty good, if people are arguing about what's not on it, it's brilliant!"
During an interview on Radio 1 in October 2006, and later during a question and answer session with The Sun, Liam Gallagher, who got a songwriting credit with his "Songbird", claimed that he was happy with the tracks Noel had selected for the album, although he said that he would have liked "Rockin' Chair" and "D'You Know What I Mean?" to be included. Noel, however, admitted that "D'You Know What I Mean?" was to be included on the album up until the moment it was being mastered, explaining that the length of the song "upset the flow of the album".
In the special boxed-edition of 'Stop the Clocks' at the end of the 'Lock the Box' interview, when Liam was told 'Whatever' was not on the track-listing he said "Thank fuck for that".
All songs written by Noel Gallagher except "Songbird", written by Liam Gallagher
"Rock 'n' Roll Star" (from Definitely Maybe)
"Some Might Say" (from (What's the Story) Morning Glory?)
"Talk Tonight" (from The Masterplan)
"Lyla" (from Don't Believe the Truth)
"The Importance of Being Idle" (from Don't Believe the Truth)
"Wonderwall" (from (What's the Story) Morning Glory?)
"Slide Away" (from Definitely Maybe)
"Cigarettes & Alcohol" (from Definitely Maybe)
"The Masterplan" (from The Masterplan)
"Live Forever" (from Definitely Maybe)
"Acquiesce" (from The Masterplan)
"Supersonic" (from Definitely Maybe)
"Half the World Away" (from The Masterplan)
"Go Let It Out" (from Standing on the Shoulder of Giants)
"Songbird" (from Heathen Chemistry)
"Morning Glory" (from (What's the Story) Morning Glory?)
"Champagne Supernova" (from (What's the Story) Morning Glory?)
"Don't Look Back in Anger" (from (What's the Story) Morning Glory?)
The cover was designed by Sir Peter Blake, best known for his design of the sleeve for The Beatles' album Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, but also well recognized within the genre for his work on the cover of Paul Weller's Stanley Road album.
According to Blake, he chose all of the objects in the picture at random, but the sleeves of Sgt. Pepper's and Definitely Maybe were in the back of his mind. He claims, "It's using the mystery of Definitely Maybe and running away with it." Familiar cultural icons which can be seen on the cover include Dorothy from Wizard of Oz, Michael Caine (replacing the original image of Marilyn Monroe, which couldn't be used for legal reasons) and the seven dwarfs from Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs.
Blake also revealed that the final cover wasn't the original one. That design featured an image of the shop 'Granny Takes A Trip' on the Kings Road in Chelsea, London.