Destination Jam: Our Top 5 Kasabian songs pay tribute to the British rockers following Tom Meighan's departure
Need something to keep you entertained while at work or play? Our daily Destination Jam playlist has been fine-tuned with some great selections for you from music legends — Kasabian
It came as a bit of a surprise for music lovers to learn that Tom Meighan, the lead vocalist of British rock band Kasabian, had recently announced his departure from the beloved Leicester-based outfit on July 6, 2020. Tom Meighan had co-founded Kasabian as a college student back in the late '90s (they named themselves after Linda Kasabian, a member of the infamous Charles Manson cult).
Along with current members — guitarist Serge Pizzorno, bassist Chris Edwards and drummer Ian Matthews, the hard-working band endeared themselves to an international audience with their signature mix of psychedelic and noise rock. According to a short statement released by the band, Meighan had "struggled with personal issues that have affected his behavior for quite some time and now wants to concentrate all his energies on getting his life back on track."
These are understood to include personal losses for Meighan, such as the death of a close friend and splitting with his former partner in 2017, so we wish him well as he looks to get his life and health sorted for the better. Meighan later issued a statement thanking fans for their support, saying "I'm in a really good place now." So in honor of this brilliant band that has blessed us with some catchy and trippy tunes over the last 20 years, let's take a look at some Kasabian classics from their storied discography.
This catchy bop first introduced the world to the phenomenal talents of Kasabian during the dawn of the new millennium. 'Club Foot' was featured on their 2004 debut album 'Kasabian' and became instantly recognizable thanks to its distorted intro bassline and a catchy singalong hook. Since then, it has been featured on countless video games, television shows, and movies over the years, and is one of the biggest reasons for the band's widespread international appeal.
Interestingly, the music video for this song, which was directed by WIZ, was dedicated to the memory of Jan Palach, a Czech student who set himself on fire in 1969 to protest the Soviet Union's suppression of Czechoslovakia. And if you look closely, you can even see a banner showing the Hungarian text for "Radio Free Europe" in the music video, a reference to the Soviet government's involvement in the Hungarian Revolution of 1956. Who knew such a fun, infectious song could be so political in nature!
Another all-time classic from the English rock band's pantheon of hits, this was the second single released from their debut album 'Kasabian' in 2004. The title 'LSF' is an acronym for "Lost Souls Forever" and contained lyrics like "I need it, loud potions / These drugs are just an hour away / Come on it, electronic / A polyphonic prostitute / The motors on fire / Messiah for the animals."
The infectious song proved to be Kasabian's first UK Top 10 hit, peaking at No 10 on the charts and proceeded to stay in the Top 75 spots for the next five weeks. The song is also forever associated with football and the FIFA videogame franchise and is still hummed by Premier League fans in the rafters to this day. The celebrated DJ Mark Ronson also covered this track on his album 'Version', with the band themselves making a special appearance on his 2007 rendition, which later featured on the soundtrack of the 2008 movie '21'.
In keeping with Kasabian's enduring association with English football and its enthusiastic fans, we had to include this one on our list. First released as the lead single from Kasabian's third album, 'West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum' the hooky synth-heavy song proved to be an instant hit when it was released in 2009. In its very first week, it debuted at No 3 on the UK Singles chart, making it Kasabian's highest-charting single to date, as well as their fourth UK Top 10 single.
The song also became instantly recognizable by international audiences after it was chosen as the theme song for the English Premier League, starting from its 2010-2011 season up till the 2012-2013 season. The song was also a huge hit in Kasabian's hometown of Leicester, whose football team still uses it as their goal celebration music. It was no doubt doubly sweet for Leicester City football fans when their team finally clinched its debut Premier League Trophy in 2015, and the melody of 'Fire' was loudly sung throughout their triumphant victory parade.
This modern electronic banger, whose title is "Easy" pronounced in a Leicester accent, was first released as the promo single for Kasabian's fifth studio album, '48:13' back in 2014. The song came as a surprise to many fans since the band chose to wholly embrace an electronic dance music vibe on this track. Although it initially divided their rock-rooted fanbase by making such jarring first impression, the song was readily embraced by the band's open-minded fans later down the line, and it is now regarded as one of Kasabian's finest genre-blurring offerings with its trippy beats and slick production.
The band's guitarist and driving creative force Sergio Pizzorno revealed that the song's production was a tribute to Giorgio Moroder (who has a Daft Punk song named after him), who had once said that 120BPM was a "magic tempo." Lead singer Meighan also heralded the new song as a "working-class anthem" and said he wanted the song to have the same effect on people as the electronic classic 'Born Slippy' did in 1996.
We thought it was fitting to close out our Kasabian playlist with a fond farewell to Meighan with 'Goodbye Kiss'. This lovely song was first released in 2012 by the band as the third single from their fourth studio album, 'Velociraptor!' The bittersweet ballad chronicles the collapse of a doomed, hedonistic relationship, and contains lyrics like "Turning slowly, looking back, see / No words can save this, you're broken and I'm pissed / Run along like I'm supposed to / Be the man I ought to / Rock and roll sent us insane, I hope someday that we will meet again."
It's notable that the American songstress Lana Del Rey, herself no stranger to melancholic ballads, chose to cover this song as a stripped-down live acoustic version in 2012, earning her a combined count of over 15 million views on Youtube alone. Speaking about the cover, Lana Del Rey said, "All of my boyfriends had loved Kasabian and I’d never listened to them. I started and I really like this song. I love this song and I love the melody, I love the way the boys sing it." Kasabian responded in kind, saying her cover was "f***ing beautiful", with Serge Pizzorno stating "I'm really proud. Obviously we covered one of hers, 'Video Games', so it was quite a sweet thing to do back. It's a really nice gesture. It's proper old-school."
Destination Jam is a daily list of songs that will keep you entertained and grooving up top in lieu of feeling drained and losing the plot. Look out for a fresh selection of great tunes from MEAWW to refresh your mood every day!