The guitarist talks to NME about becoming 'The SLP', ‘Favourites’, Little Simz, his solo life, and what’s next for the band
Talking to NME about the inspiration behind the track, Kasabian’s chief songwriter said that he was troubled by the world of social media.
“Kasabian organised some time off, and I’ve never afforded myself that luxury – well, none of us have really,” Pizzorno told NME. “We’ve never stopped. I found a perfect little window to experiment and see where that took me. I just enjoyed that freedom of being able to do whatever.
“I had been writing notes in my phone. I was interested in people having these online personas and this perfect projection of themselves; do you know what I mean? This is what we put out there, but in reality none of us are really like that.”
He continued: “It’s a question of identity in the digital age. We flick through all these photos to choose the favourite, go out on a date and move on before it’s even ended.”
“Some of us maybe laugh about the use of ‘the favourite’. I was having a 3am session and this track evolved. That’s when I realised that it needed Little Simz to be on it, because she’s incredible. I explained what the track was all about to her and she was just buzzing.”
Speaking of his decision to call Little Simz, Pizzorno said that he had wanted to work with the rapper and singer “for ages”.
“We had a mutual friend and the collab just came about,” he said. “She’s really distinctive, such a cool person and has such a good wit. Her lyrics and flow are the best we’ve got.”
Asked if there were any other rising artists he’d been working with, Pizzorno replied: “There are a few that I’ve got my eye on. There may be some surprises to come, but we’ll leave it at that, shall we?
So could there be a full solo album on the horizon?
“There may be. We’re going to see how it goes. I’m never out of the studio. That’s my place. I’m always writing, always working. Luckily that’s my job.”
While experimenting away from the band, Pizzorno said that he’d discovered “a world of his own that he can visit”.
“These are the extreme sides of my personality that I can explore,” he went on. “This is another place that I can visit. Now that it exists, I can go there whenever I want. It’s an outlet to keep me sane.”
As for the lyrics that he’d been writing, Pizzorno told NME: “Some of it is about me, some of it is about friends, some of it is about what I’ve read. It’s a bit of a mish-mash of all of these personalities.
“It’s up to the listener to figure out what’s me and what’s not.”
While admitting that he’d “really like to” perform live as The S.L.P., Pizzorno said that it would need to be “a whole new and unique experience” from his usual stage show with Kasabian.
“I’m in an incredible band, and I’d never try to compete with that,” he told NME. “It would have to be a completely different thing. Now I can try to do something which is the last thing you expect.”
Meanwhile, Pizzorno also told NME that he was writing the next Kasabian album “as we speak”, and feeling reinvigorated by the work he was doing as a solo artist.
“If something feels good, then you should follow the art,” he said. “Great zones don’t come from comfort zones. This feels great now, and it’s great that I’ve got the time to do it.”
He went on: “Kasabian is a huge machine that we’ve created. There’s a routine and you’re safe in that place, but you need something else to happen. Sometimes there needs to be a storm in the harbour. You need for everyone to go, ‘Woah, what’s going on?’ When the day breaks, you see the clarity.
“Me having something else to do means that when we come back I’ll be in a whole new headspace that wasn’t possible before. “
As for the sound of Kasabian’s new songs, he replied: “I don’t want to say anything yet, but it will continue to push boundaries.”
And could we see some solo work from his Kasabian bandmate Tom Meighan?
“Maybe, yeah. We will have another album out – but in the mean time, who knows?
Speaking to NME last summer about the next Kasabian album, Pizzorno said: “I’m just collecting and enjoying not having any plans at the moment. Just listening. Just seeing what’s out in the world. Sometimes it’s nice just to listen and not say anything. The world at the moment is a pretty slippery character, and everything is moving at a pace that’s never been seen before. I’m just enjoying getting back into listening to music.”
He added: “Back in the day I would dig for beats, now I sort of dig for hooks and ideas. I’ll flick through streams and think: ‘I like that 10 seconds’ and record it, and accumulate them, so now I have this library of things. It can go from 10 seconds of thrash metal to two minutes of a 1920s track with a banjo. I don’t really know what I’m collecting, but there’s always something in there that triggers the next move.”