Known for their flamboyant style and highly charged live shows, the Leicester-based band Kasabian was formed in 1997 by four childhood friends – Tom Meighan, Serge Pizzorno, Chris Edwards and Chris Karloff.
Initially called Saracuse, they became Kasabian shortly after being signed by BMG. The new moniker was a reference to a member of Charles Manson’s cult, Linda Kasabian, who later testified as a key witness against him.
In the early 2000s, the quartet went to live in a remote farmhouse near Rutland Water in order to focus on recording their eponymous debut album, which came out in 2004. Its third single, Club Foot, gave Kasabian their first taste of success charting at No.19. In the months that followed, three more songs – LSF, Processed Beats and Cutt Off – landed in the top 20.
When Kasabian toured the album in 2005, they brought along drummer Ian Matthews, who joined as a permanent member in 2006 – and that summer the quintet played Glastonbury for the first time on The Other Stage.
Inspired by bands like The Stone Roses, Happy Mondays, Primal Scream and Oasis, Kasabian was quickly establishing their own bold sound fusing psychedelic and electro elements with rock and ’60s pop.
While recording their follow-up album, disagreements led to Karloff’s departure, shortly before Empire arrived in August 2006. Spawning three singles – the title track along with Shoot The Runner and Me Plus One – it climbed to No.1 on the UK albums chart.
Working with producer Dan “The Automator” Nakamura (Kool Keith, Gorillaz), Kasabian’s third album West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum came out in 2009. The song Vlad The Impaler was revealed in advance along with a video starring actor and comedian Noel Fielding. Like its predecessor, West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum gave the band their second consecutive No.1 and was shortlisted for a Mercury Prize.
Not only were Kasabian invited on Oasis’ last world tour in 2009, but they also won the Best Group award at the 2010 BRITs.
Kasabian headlined numerous summer shows and closed out the Isle Of Wight Festival in 2011 before releasing Velociraptor! The album landed at No.1 again, as did 2014’s 48:13, which was named for its running time and became the first record produced chiefly by Pizzorno.
Revered for their live shows, Kasabian performed an unforgettable 21-song set on the Pyramid Stage while closing out 2014’s Glastonbury that included an appearance from Fielding as well as spirited renditions of all their hits. They were even nominated for Headline Performance Of The Year at the 2014 UK Festival Awards.
In 2016, Kasabian played a couple of concerts to celebrate Leicester City FC winning the Premier League title at the King Power Stadium.
Their sixth album, For Crying Out Loud, was unveiled the following year, adding a fifth No.1 to their credits. To support it, Kasabian also embarked on a world tour in 2017 that included appearances at TRNSMT and Reading & Leeds festivals. The band played at 2018’s Isle Of Wight Festival followed by a raucous performance at London’s O2 Academy Brixton.
In 2019, Pizzorno launched a solo project called The S.L.P. (the initials of his full name, Sergio Lorenzo Pizzorno) and released a critically acclaimed record by the same name.
Meighan left the band in 2020. In May 2021, Kasabian – comprised of Pizzorno, Edwards and Matthews, along with guitarist Tim Carter – announced a UK tour in October and November 2021 consisting of 15 intimate shows.