5 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Kasabian running out of ideas,
This review is from: Velociraptor! [Explicit] (MP3 Download)
Kasabian were one of a cluster of British bands of the 'Noughties' (God I hate saying that) that I actually enjoyed listening to. I liked their beats and - while their attitude was plagirised from any Madchester band you can think of -they had some undeniably great anthems. The first album was clearly written with a certain market in mind. The Britpop market. A sort of tribute band for the days of drink and drunk excess and cultural hedonism. So, the first album wasn't terribly original but it had some great moments.
We arrive at the second album and, with the exception of the singles and 'The Doberman' we have a very inconsistent album. Tom Meighan's vocals are particularly starting to grate by this point. Which made 'West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum' such a great surprise. This was a focused record with an excellent balance of anthems, electro beats, and melodic acoustic tracks. I've always liked Serge. I think he's a good songwriter and he's better than the 'lad rock' tag he receives from some quarters.
With my faith in Kasabian restored, I looked forward to hearing what they had in store with this record. What I got was a lot of 'same old, same old'. I wanted this record to be amazing! I really did. Opening track 'Lets Roll Like We Used To' opens proceedings well...the first 30 seconds draws you in to a weird and wonderful world that you think is going to blow your mind...unfortunately, when the music kicks in, while fairly accomplished, never really matches the intrigue to the opening 20 seconds...first official single 'Days Are Forgotten' is a solid Kasabian single...not as good as any of the singles from the last record, but a decent single...stupidly, we next have a ballad that seems to have stolen half the chord sequence and melody of The Ronettes' 'Be My Baby'. 'Goodbye Kiss' is a good indication of what is wrong with Kasabian at the minute. The song is decent. The arrangement is nice if a little simplistic, but then you have a vocalist who can only sing in one mode. He can't be subtle or tender. A song like this requires a certain charm and subtlety...Tom is incapable of this. I think Serge knows it, too...otherwise he wouldn't be taking more and more turns on vocals with every passing album.
La Fee Verte is a welcome track because Serge takes over on vocals...this is as pretentious as the album gets...we have references to Sgt Peppers album tracks...it is a good track in an album lacking in them...we reach 'Velociraptor' which is just a piece of garbage...I'll say no more...'Acid Turkish Baths' is album filler which reminds me of many of the album fillers on 'Empire'...'I Hear Voices' is an attempt to add variation to the record...does nothing for me...'Re-wired' irritates the life out of me for some reason...'Man of Simple Pleasures' has yet another dreadful vocal from Meighan...his S.Ryder/L.Gallagher/I.Brown vocal mannerisms are really beginning to test the patience of your eardrums. Thankfully, Switchblade Smiles has a great bassline and guitar hook to help ignore Tom's vocal mannerisms for a couple of minutes...we end on 'Neon Noon' which is an excellent closing track, with Serge again taking lead vocals...this points towards a potential future Serge solo album...I for one would like to see this because I think the guy has talent.
Kasabian will always be tagged with 'Lad Rock' in some quarters because of the lead singer's derivative vocal mannerisms and cocky swagger...what annoys me about him is that I never can tell if his cockiness is genuine or just a front because he thinks it makes him look cool...he is a good frontman but cannot sing.
This album now has me looking at Kasabian's discography in hindsight wondering if they were ever that good in the first place...they have had a patchy career to date...the music seems to have dated, and I am beginning to wonder if they are at all relevant. Time for a Serge solo album or side project. I can guarantee that if he ever did, you'd never hear of Meighan again.
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 28 Oct 2011 04:52:40 BDT
Aaron Gunn says:
A bit harsh on Tom M., but, good points made. I too was dissapointed with this album. I thought their first release was a breath of fresh air, 2nd = poor, West Ryder was surprisingly good, and alas, this is not good.
In reply to an earlier post on 4 Nov 2011 15:28:27 GMT
It could be deemed to be a bit tough on Tom but I stand by what I said. He really is a poor vocalist.
Posted on 18 Jan 2012 15:56:25 GMT
Red Kremlin says:
"This album now has me looking at Kasabian's discography in hindsight wondering if they were ever that good in the first place"
-No, they weren't. A step above the Kaiser Chiefs. 1st album was decent, a few semi-decent tracks from their next 2 albums and that's it. Re-wired is dreadful, and i'm glad it isn't just me that's irritated by Tom's vocals. Funny thing is I seen them live in Glasgow 2004, at the time it was the best gig I'd ever attended. I've only heard about half the tracks on the new album and that was enough for me. I can't quite believe how much I've 'went off' this band.
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