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Kasabian: 48:13

Deluxe edition of Leicester heroes’ fifth LP, plus live DVD.

Charisma is instrumental to Kasabian’s success. In the glow of their Glastonbury set and now this mammoth Leicester park show – both pegged on the electronica beats and neon artwork of 48:13 – this has never been clearer. There’s so much ‘filler’ to pad out a clutch of killer hits, yet these lords of lad-rock have continued their ascent to pop kinghood.

Spanning hints of house, orchestral samples and hip hop breaks, 48:13 is very ‘down wiv da kids’ – consisting of all single-word lower-case titles (stevie, eez-eh, beanz, meanz, heinz… OK, we made up the last two, but you get the idea) and music tailor-made for DJ crowds and football matches.

Pedantry aside, however, so many of the actual tunes here are just… well, empty. Glimpses are great. Treat, for instance, is a furiously toe-tapping, genuinely cool song, mastering inventive, trip-hopping heights. Were it all of the same standard, 48:13 might have been brilliant.

And then there’s the live portion, documenting their hungrily lapped-up homecoming. Leading the charge are frontmen Tom Meighan and Sergio Pizzorno – simian-pouting dandies and best-mate heroes for a generation of iPhone-waving, football-chanting festival goers. Behind the scenes slow-motion gives the sense of glittering rock legends. Neither Tom nor Serge, in the cold light of day, is that good a musician, but flanked by tight strings, brass and band, they pull it off.

With so much in the way of DJ-friendly beats and ‘LEMME-SEE-YOUR-HAAAANDS!’ cries, it scarcely seems to matter what they play… until a bona fide winner like Fire materialises. Eyes widen and the crowd surges joyously. You wish the whole thing was like this./o:p

Polly is Features Editor at Classic Rock magazine, where she commissions regular pieces and longer reads (including new band coverage) and writes a few things. She also writes for Louder, Prog and Metal Hammer, and talks about songs on the 20 Minute Club podcast. In her spare time she writes fiction and cooks.