Some bands get a lot of flack for being themselves – some more so than others.
Case in point? Kasabian.
Now, with that said, it’s not hard to see why they’ve gotten the stick that they have. At times, their demands to be taken seriously as a rock outfit saw them practically become a parody of themselves.
Even on their new record, ‘For Crying Out Loud’ – with its garish cover art of their elderly roadier semi-naked crying cartoon tears – seemed a hard and fast plea for validation among all circles.
However, from the beginning of their Olympia Theatre gig, evidence suggests that Kasabian on record and Kasabian on stage are not necessarily the same band.
It’s fun, outrageously so, to the point where the performance takes on an element of slapstick comedy. The band don’t command attention – rather, they demand that everyone attending fully makes the effort to enjoy themselves.
It’s surprisingly un-indulgent. Yes, the tour was organised with the idea of promoting the new album, but they know that that’s not really what anyone is there for. It’s a setlist that covers all bases – treat. from ’48:13′ leaves the venue awash with psychedelia; while Rewired is a point-and-clap anthem for the ages.
New single You’re In Love With A Psycho does get a look in, and proves itself to a grower as their most pop-sounding record to do date.
The lads even throw together a cover of Around The World by Daft Punk, which has frontman Tom Meighan, seeing the reaction from the crowd, turning to his band mates in bemusement, implying ‘did we do this on purpose?’
While still being an extremely jovial event, it’s a little sloppy in places, with Tom and guitarist Serge Pizzorno’s vocals slopping over each other in parts of Vlad The Impaler. For the most part though, they keep it together, and for a band that are routinely criticised for having an ego that could rival Oasis, they seemingly left it at home for this show. (It has to be said though that there was no need for Tom to be wearing sunglasses 1) at nightime and 2) indoors).
A bad gig? No. A perfect gig? Certainly not. It’s guitar heavy; there’s plenty of camaraderie and while showmanship is appreciated at the best of times, in other instances, sweating it out to a very loud, boisterous output is more appropriate. The pacing is good, the set is consistent, and the band themselves are unrelenting,