‘The West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum’
Today I’m back to an old favourite of mine, Kasabian. From the driving electronica influenced self-titled debut and the 70’s rock influenced ‘Empire’, Kasabian has always been right on the money, and they know it. They have a swagger to them that only a few other bands have at the moment, The Killers have it and Oasis definitely have it These bands believe (and say) they are the greatest band in the world or close to it, and while the bands themselves are almost always trying to gain publicity when they make outlandish statements like this, they still make music that sounds “better than the rest”.
‘The West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum’ is Kasabian’s third album and it turns out that they’ve reverted back to the style of their self-titled album, it’s definitely not a step back though, they have found new and interesting ways to make the same sounding music and have matured as songwriters.
Kasabian have made albums which catch you in the first 10 seconds, ‘West Ryder Pauper’ is no different. ‘Underdog’ starts with a looping electronic sample and then blasts your speakers with the main guitar. Believe me when I say it’s LOUD, just as you adjust your speakers to the right level the riff deafens you. In my opinion it’s a masterstroke from the band and gets the album right in your head and lures you to a mesmerised state of mind.
‘Take Aim’ is a really compelling track, it starts with an orchestral piece that sounds like it could be the backing music to Call of Duty, but the song moves away from the obvious style and maneuvers itself closer to what Kasabian does best, it uses an extremely simple guitar lick that’s probably more of bass track than anything, which in the end proves to be the part of music that keeps the song sounding modern.
At track 11, I came to my favourite song, ‘Fire’. I must admit, it’s not exactly anything special until the chorus, where the song explodes into a great array of vocals. I didn’t really take much notice of the albums vocals, but this track just shows how effective the combination of Tom Meighan and Sergio Pizzorno is. For the past few years I’ve found myself to be quite tiresome of choruses, but over the last few weeks I’ve started to find them to be more relevant to the particular song, this song is definitely one of those songs that are made because of the chorus.
The albums strength is in it’s progression toward the better songs, the heavier more catchier tunes are complemented with the psychedelic jams, and these provide a sort of cement that keeps the album interesting and easy to listen to. In saying this though, there aren’t really any bad songs. It’s an extremely solid album.
Kasabian haven’t made an album that rivals their first two, but they aren’t far off at all. Before hearing this album I couldn’t see them ever making an album as solid as Kasabian but I’ve changed my mind, ‘West Ryder Pauper’ is a step towards an album that will rival and even better their self-titled effort.