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Kasabian & Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds
Marlay Park, Dublin
Craig Fitzpatrick, 12 Sep 2012
As for the twin frontmen, Tom bounces about, talking up his Irish connections (he bleeds ‘green’ etc), whilst Serge is almost shamanistic, bandana in place, veering from gazing at the stars to cursing at the moshpit. It helps that they now have four albums of equal heft under their collective belt – newies from Velociraptor! are as well-received as the likes of ‘Club Foot’. They don’t have Noel’s way with a ballad, but they have the riffs and swagger in spades.
If Oasis started off sounding like a burly Troggs before The Beatles crept in, Kasabian have grabbed that early meathead influence and gone supeernova. ‘Shoot The Runner’ is glam redux, ‘Underdog’ is music for stepping into a boxing ring and ‘Empire’ sounds like a clear-headed Shaun Ryder leading a Bez-dancing army into battle. Not that they don’t do tuneful. ‘Where Did All The Love Go’ is a widescreen, big-hearted anthem with a slight Stones sneer, while ‘Cutt Off’ belongs on the football terraces. Throughout, techno interludes mix things up and the cinematic stylings of Ennio Morricone are all over their latest efforts.
Then there are the inspired covers. Serge leads a tender singalong of ‘Everybody’s Gotta Learn Sometimes’, whilst ‘Praise You’ (in honour of Gallagher) segues wonderfully into ‘Lost Souls Forever’. By the end, the boys onstage are as lost in the moment as the crowd and a final prolonged version of ‘Fire’ is incendiary. Literally. Halfway through, a flare ignites and is held aloft in the centre of Marlay Park to mass cheers. A nice bit of well-intentioned rock ‘n’ roll anarchy in a tightly controlled environment, it fits.
As the light dies out, a few a capella lines of The Beatles’ ‘She Loves You’ serenade us homewards. Bringing everything full circle, Kasabian’s place in rock’s proud lineage seems confirmed.