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Kasabian Empire

There's something about second-generation Britpop that seems very, very desperate-like guys trying to squeeze the last ounce of boyish exuberance from their fading youth. Kasabian's second full-length, Empire, starts off promisingly, with the thumping bass and catchy string arrangements of the title track, but quickly spirals downward into Sgt. Pepper's-meets-Primal Scream territory, only not half as good as that should sound. While the album has a few high points, such as "Me Plus One"'s handclaps and tambourines, what could have been a fun, light romp in early-'90s nostalgia just ends up being slightly obnoxious.

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