I enjoyed What's the Story from beginning to end. I bought Be Here Now the day it came out at the mall. Back then, MTV would premiere videos and tell you when an album was going to come out. BHN had the date in the artwork. The album is super-bloated. Liam also seemed to really over do the same rhyme-y simple lyrics. If you read the lyrics Noel is putting his brother down through the lyrics - he wrote them and knew Liam would sing them. Pretty funny if you think about it. "Through my big mouth - you could fly a plane..."
I like WTSMG so much, but never managed a copy of their debut until a couple of years ago. I didn't really like it. It's been awhile, but I don't think the first one has a balance with acoustic guitars, etc., like What's the Story, and just has a lot of guitar fuzz pushed to 11 mastered heavily.
Those were different times - Champagne Supernova was played on the commercial pop stations - could you imagine anything like that played today? Granted, there was a lot of guitar/post grunge stuff, and I don't listen to current commercial pop radio stations now.