Concert Review: Kasabian @ First Direct Arena – Leeds

Stints of Kanye’s “Black Skinhead”, Cameo’s “Word Up”, and Fatboy Slim’s “Praise You”, Kasabian’s set blew away a sold out Leeds arena

After putting on an incredible headlining performance at Glastonbury earlier this year the bands UK tour has huge shoes to fill, but with an impressive mass of songs to choose from, the lads certainly have the credentials.

Kicking off with ‘Bumblebee’ the band came out with an energetic performance that rather disappointingly did not match the enthusiasm of the sold out crowd. Even through the likes of ‘”Underdog” and “Shoot The Runner” there was hardly any real movement and madness amongst fans to the extent that we’ve come to expect from Kasabian’s live performances. Maybe this was just because that mass of fans at festivals and the atmosphere it creates is impossible to replicate or that simply Kasabian’s live repertoire perceives them. However this being said it was still a shock to see fans taking casual selfies within reaching distance of the stage during “Where Did All The Love Go?”

Putting this aside however, the bands performance was staggering, Serg blasted out riffs on his Rickenbacker and Tom continued to shout lyrics with that arrogant cocky charm. Accompanying that boastful allure we’ve all grown to simultaneously love and hate Kasabian for, they also showed a more refined and rehearsed sound to their set which would silence all those who’ve often accused Kasabian of being purely a raucous party band for the drinkers.

As the set went on “cut-off” and new song “Eeez-eh” saw the crowd pick up, chants and singing grew louder and surges of people seemed to push forward and lift of as waves jumped and screamed the chorus to “Bow”. It seemed as though all those lingering towards the back drinking had kicked into gear and in a daze, lifted the atmosphere and created something far more vigorous.

Slipping back into something more relaxed the band played “Thick as Thieves” followed by “Goodbye kiss” which saw Serg get out his acoustic guitar again after the simplistic intro to opening song “Bumblebee”. Given time to admire there quirky dress sense and Serge’s fox tail, the band fooled and joked on stage and gave the impression they were fully enjoying themselves.

After a mashed up “Re-wired” with Cameo’s “Word Up”, “Switchblade smiles” saw the Leeds mass at their best so far. The entire standing crowd seemed to have gained a new lease of life, and as “Fire” -the bands finale as such- kicked in the entire crowd was seen jumping and dancing in a wild frenzy. Even those seated towards the back, were amongst those creating havoc and a racquet. The lack of enthusiasm and attitude earlier on was completely blown away as fires melody screeched out around the stadium.

Leaving the stage to a mass of cheers and the faint chants of “Yorkshire, Yorkshire”, there return was imminent. Violins aggressively struck out the opening to “Stevie” and before long the lads arrived back belting out more songs with the same energy witnessed right from the offset. With a short sequence of Fatboy Slims “Praise you”, the slowed down and steady beat made way for “L.S.F.” the bands prolific finale, which could be heard echoing around the stadium long after the band left.

Follow updates from Kasabian here.

Review by Jacob Flannery |

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