‘Kill me if you dare, hold my head up everywhere’.
The very first line of Kasabian’s latest album belts out a defiant message. The band appear not to care who hates them, and focus instead on making music that keeps their fans happy. And this record is sure to do that.
Intriguingly titled the ‘West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum’, the album kicks off in true Kasabian fashion; a thumping intro with raw guitar sounds and Tom Meighan booming out the lyrics to Underdog. It’s a fantastic opening track and one that lifts your mood anytime you listen to it.
Swiftly following that is the stunning sing-along track Where Did All The Love Go?, before a mystical instrumental number entitled Swarfiga.
Next is the rumbustious anthem Fast Fuse, that was originally recorded a couple of years ago alongside track 6 Thick as Thieves. Neither song was ever released, and both have been slightly re-jigged to excellent effect. Fast Fuse in particular is a memorable highlight of this epic album.
In between those two is a mesmorising track entitled Take Aim. Here, lead guitarist and backing singer Sergio Pizzorno comes in to his own as he takes lead vocals, before handing back the reigns to Meighan who teams up with Hollywood actress Rosario Dawson to sing the duet West Ryder Silver Bullet.
With that track having a soothing effect, it is time for more foot stomping as the download only single Vlad The Impaler blares into action. Nobody who listens to this track will forget it in a hurry, as the chorus sticks in your head for hours… ‘Get loose, get loose.’
The incredible journey continues with the ballad Ladies and Gentlemen (Roll The Dice) and another standout track Secret Alphabets. The fluttering intro to the latter title continues the sense of darkness and mystery that is prevalant throughout this record.
The penultimate track is the one that everyone will now be familiar with. Having first played it at Creamfields in 2008, the band have since rehashed the recorded version of Fire into a disco pop style anthem with a catchy hook. Kasabian have since wowed the crowds at Glastonbury and Radio 1’s Big Weekend, with thousands singing along to the infectious chorus.
The album finishes off in the only way that Kasabian know; epic. A gospel choir joins in to draw the whole show to a close, and after listening to the 49 minute album, it is perhaps fitting that the last song should be entitled Happiness.
This is a stunning record, and a simply brilliant return from Kasabian. Having already spent three weeks at number one, it is difficult to look anywhere other than the West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum for the album of the year.