Kasabian – Kasabian Review

1. Club Foot
2. Processed Beats
3. Reason Is Treason
4. I.D.
5. Orange
6. L.S.F. (Lost Souls Forever)
7. Running Battle
8. Test Transmission
9. Pinch Roller
10. Cutt Off
11. Butcher Blues
12. Ovary Stripe
13. U Boat

So a while back I got my hands on the new Kasabian CD for review. I listened to it, gave it a second spin, and then put it down for a while. Because, to be honest, the album had me a bit baffled. I wasn’t sure what to make of these guys from Leicester. They came ready-made, built up with a lot of hype, The Next Big Thing from the UK. Named after Manson getaway driver-turned-state’s witness Linda Kasabian, the band (singer Tom Meighan, guitarist Christopher Karloff, guitarist and synths Sergio Pizzorno, bassist Chris Edwards) has attitude to spare. The question is do they have the music to back that attitude up?

“Club Foot”, the first track off the album, has been heard all over the place, and for good reason. It sounds like U2 if they’d made Achtung, Baby as their first album instead of Boy. The driving backbeat and swirling synth make an irresistible groove you can’t help but nod your head to. “Processed Beats” kicks it back a gear, with its simple bass and drum line creating a canvas for the song’s jangling guitar. “Reason Is Treason”, with its relentless rhythm, may be the album’s best track, a nervous, jittery track that midway through veers in a different direction before pulling back together for the end, a cacophony of cymbals and synth.

From that point on, though, the album begins to tail off somewhat, as the band begins to parade their influences. They’ve spent a lot of time listening to the Stone Roses and Happy Monday, and it shows. Songs like “L.S.F.” and “Cutt Off” are catchy, avant-garde pop songs, but don’t quite stand out the same way the opening trio of songs do. And some tracks like “Orange”, “Test Transmission”, and “Pinch Roller” are interesting experiments in sound that don’t lead to much.

In the end, Kasabian has put out an interesting album. It’s certainly got its share of listenable tracks. Maybe if they had leaned fully in one direction or the other, they would have had a better album. But one too many experiments leave the album feeling a bit lacking in cohesion. They have, however, earned the right to have their second album heard.