Kasabian are well established in the music industry. Their self-titled debut album was released ten years ago when they were lairy twenty somethings, living on a farm and raving to various music journalists about how they were the best band in the world. Five albums later and, unlike most bands, their sound is ever developing, somewhere on a spectrum of psychedelic rock with hip-hop style beats. The Leicester four piece graced the stage at Bournemouth International Centre on Tuesday 25th November and didn’t disappoint.
London five piece The Maccabees opened on the night and they’re not exactly new to the scene either with four albums under their belt. Their set included highlights such as ‘First Love’ and ‘No Kind Words.’ Front man Orlando Weeks has engaging vocals, and the harmonies provided by guitarist Felix White made the set a pleasure to listen to.
Kasabian’s Opener ‘Bumblebeee’ erupted into the BIC with a wall of sound. The audience responded via pockets of the more hard-core fans bouncing excitedly, but the fast paced energy of the song was wasted on the majority of the crowd and it could have perhaps been utilised to its full potential later on in the set. That being said, by the time the intro to third album favourite ‘Underdog’ began there were cups of questionable yellow liquid hurling through the air, hands were raised appreciatively and it was clear that the crowd had now, in fact, warmed up.
Always one for mixing it up a bit, a nice little surprise came in the form of a mash-up that merged ‘Rewired’ and Cameos ‘Word Up,’ the latter sung by lead guitarist Sergio Pizzorno. A strange combination you may be thinking. Strange, yes, but also absolutely genius and it was impossible to take your eyes off of Pizzorno, whose soft tones contrast brilliantly live with front man Tom Meighan’s rougher bass voice.
A visual highlight of the set was latest album 48:13 release ‘Bow,’ which saw Pizzorno man the stage without right hand man Meighan. With a backdrop of a black and white mirror image of the guitarist, the atmosphere was set perfectly and there was a certain sense of intimacy despite the 4000 people crying “It’s all over now” at the top of their voice.
Whenever Meighan bounded back on stage with encouragements of ‘come on Bournemouth,’ the pace picked up; the front man possesses an effortless talent for sparking energy into a crowd. First album hit ‘Club Foot’ was an audience favourite on Tuesday night, the fast pace of the song was suitably rowdy and threatening, the perfect song to create mosh-pits galore. Meighan spits out the lyrics like he’s daring you to meet him outside afterwards and it’s lovely to see that ten years of performing this song hasn’t made him lazy.
The band returned for an encore that gave the audience no time to stop for breath. During ‘Vlad the Impaler’ the mixture of frantically flashing lights and angry guitar riffs made it an overall highlight. Even those guys who stand stock still at gigs without so much of foot tap (you know the ones) couldn’t help but join in with shouts of “Get Loose, get loose!” ‘LSF’ closed the show with the added addition of Fat Boy Slim’s ‘Praise you,’ which really solidified the band’s diversity; it’s as if they are fearless in their musical endeavours. The song is the perfect chance for a sing along and the crowd didn’t stop singing until long after the band had left the stage.
There’s a million other bands out there at the moment that seem to be singing the same songs under different titles and performing in the same mechanical way: front man remains dominantly behind the mic, guitarist strums moodily away, no time for small talk. Kasabian just seem have that something extra about them; a certain amount of effort goes into their gigs which makes each one unique, like that thoughtful, personalised Christmas present that you always appreciate just a little bit more than the others. They owned the BIC stage like few other bands could do and proved why they are worthy of their success.
Tickets for Kasabian’s tour are now sold out, but you can get the deluxe edition of latest album 48:13 here