TVD Live: Kasabian at the Fox Theater, 10/6

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Why is it that the UK appreciates rock ‘n’ roll more than we do here in the states? Kasabian are hailed as one of the best British Bands of the 21st century overseas and in 2010 they won the coveted Q Award for “Best Act in the World Today.” So why are they not selling out arenas on this side of the pond? I have no idea, but they sure as hell own the stage and put on a concert for the ages wherever they bring their brilliant live show.

I’ve seen these guys numerous times over the years and I have celebrated the band’s catalog since the beginning. When I worked at Sony Music years ago I remember the folks from RCA records claiming that they had just signed the “next big thing.” I used to hear this all the time, but 9 times out of 10 the “next big thing” would be forgotten as we move on to the next priority. But Kasabian was different. Here’s a band that takes the mind-bending groves of the Stone Roses and combines them with the attitude of Primal Scream and poetic lyricism of Oasis, and then takes it to a whole new level. (And I’m sure they are sick and tired of this comparison, but it too damn perfect of a description.)

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If I had to describe the band in one world it would be bombastic. The core of the band lies in two of its original members; vocalist Tom Meighan and guitarist and vocalist Sergio Pizzorno. These guys are nothing short of magical live as they feed off of one another, queuing up song after song without skipping a beat.

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Touring in support of their fifth album and latest magnum opus titled 48:13 (named after its total running time), the band returned to the Bay Area last week at the beautiful Fox Theater. The show was nothing short of stellar as Kasabian came out all guns a blazin’ with their latest single, the undeniably catchy “Bumblebeee” followed shortly by the Gary Glitter inspired “Shoot the Runner.”

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Other highlights of the evening included the lead single from 48:13, “Eez-eh” and several Kasabian classics such as “ClubFoot,” “Days are Forgotten,” and what I believe is the band’s crowning achievement and my favorite song of theirs, “Fire.”

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48:13 entered at number one on the UK Album Chart in its first week of release and it’s the band’s fourth consecutive UK number one album. This is easily a contender for album of the year, folks.

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Opening the show was Japanese acid-punk quartet Bo Ningen (pronounced “bone engine”). This was some of the craziest music I think I have ever heard in my life. Imagine My Bloody Valentine crossed with Mike Patton and John Zorn with a touch of Jesus Lizard. They are touring in support of their new album simply titled Three.

If you like your music pushed to the absolute extreme, served up with a huge shoegazing wall of sound, then this band is for you. You really need to see these guys live to understand the experience. I wish they would have let me photograph the epic finale where I thought they might be trying to summon some sort of demon to destroy the theater. Crazy stuff.

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BO NINGEN

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Bottom line—Kasabian may very well be the best live act in the world today.

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