The mastermind behind Kasabian takes centre stage
Shannon COTTON
11:34 10th September 2019

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Sergio Lorenzo Pizzorno. The S.L.P. Serge from Kasabian. The guy who scored that almighty opening goal during Soccer Aid 2012. However you choose to refer to Serge Pizzorno, his adept musical prowess never seems to falter. Tonight (9 September) is the musician’s first full solo show in the capital. Not long after the release of his debut self-titled solo record, The S.L.P. is joined onstage by a minimal live band, letting the mastermind behind some of your favourite lad rock anthems take centre stage in a haze of kaleidoscopic bangers. 

Before Serge makes his appearance on stage, the opening bars of ‘Meanwhile…In Genova’ fill the amphitheater’s speakers. Scenes from movies are projected onto two screens on stage, acting as the opening credits which lend themselves perfectly to the cinematic soundscape that flows through the record.

As the singer bursts into ‘Favourites’ early on in the set, it becomes very clear this is a one-man show. His live band are positioned behind the aforementioned screens, only visible in certain lighting, and Serge takes on a theatrical stance, acting out lyrics such as “you’re on thin ice”, before the track’s collaborator Little Simz appears via projector form for her verse. 

It’s an intimate affair, and the minimal and astute production adds to this, proving you don’t always need the grandeur of a huge stage show to be compelling. Serge also makes a few appearances in the audience, sometimes when you’re least expecting it, much to the delight of the Dalston crowd.

The singer is flanked by a number of cartoon soldiers on the screens for ‘Soldiers 00018’ as he stalks the stage in time with the frenetic beats, whilst ‘Nobody Else’ washes over the crowd with it’s hypnotic tendencies. It soon becomes apparent that one thing Serge often doesn’t get the deserved credit for is his vocal ability. But tonight at EartH this shines through, especially on ‘Meanwhile… At The Welcome Break’ where he takes on Slowthai’s verses. 

On ‘Youngest Gary’ the singer plays with the crowd. After singing the line “I’m a nuisance when I’m drunk,” he toys with them, “you’ve all seen me right?” Before whipping a vocoder out for a slinky rendition of ‘The Wu’.

Leaving lad rock behind, for now, and turning his focus on forward-facing, electronic tracks, The S.L.P. shows the possibilities are endless when you’re faced with some time off and a studio aptly named The Sergery. Despite the unusual setting, owed solely to the venue’s amphitheater layout, the show is captivating from start to finish. Just leave us a bit more room for a mosh pit next time. 

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Photo: Alexia Arrizabalaga