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Tom Meighan Interview: Kasabian gig at Olympic Park makes me feel like “virgin” again

Kasabian. Photo by Dean Chalkley Kasabian. Photo by Dean Chalkley

Saturday, May 25, 2013
11:33 AM

Kasabian front man says being picked as the first band to play at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park is making him feel like “a virgin” again.

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Tom Meighan took time out from the indie band’s busy schedule to speak to us ahead of their gig at the Park on Saturday June 29, which will see them leading a line up also including Paul Weller.

The following day Bruce Springsteen will take to the stage at the Hard Rock Calling festival, which has been relocated from Hyde Park to Stratford after a noise curfew cut the concert short last year.

Asked how he felt about the band being first to take to the stage inside the Olympic Park the down to earth Kasabian lead singer, who describes their music as “raw”, told me: “I feel like a virgin again, do you know what I mean darling, it’s untouched, no one has ever played there before.”

The Northern rocker, who grew up in Leicester, tells me he didn’t get a chance to go to any Olympic events during last Summer’s London Games as the band was touring. He has never been inside the Olympic Park and doesn’t expect there will be a chance to visit before the gig. He said: “I’m just going to go straight on the stage.”

He promised that the band, famous for hits such as Fire, Underdog and Club Foot, will play a mixture of their old and new songs.

The group did come to East London last year for BBC Radio 1’s Hackney Weekend but Tom doesn’t have fond memories of being on stage on Hackney Marshes in pouring rain.

He said: It was horrible, it was a shit gig, no it wasn’t a shit gig really. But it was a pop line up with Rihanna and Jay-Z, and it just wasn’t our crowd. But the Olympic Park should be amazing.”

Talking about his musical influences Tom said his biggest inspirations personally have been Elvis Presley and Michael Jackson while the band has been shaped by a range of big names ranging from The Kinks and The Animals to the Beetles.

But the bands which Tom are into at the moment are Australian group Tame Impala and Ruen Brothers, an outfit from Lincoln.

Kasabian see themselves as continuing the line of rock ‘n’ roll bands but Tom said: “It’s progressive rock with a Brit pop beat.”

The band is currently working on their fifth album.

Kasabian will headline Hard Rock Calling at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park on Saturday June 29.Tickets available from hardrockcalling.co.uk

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