Four years after the apathetically reviewed ‘Listen’ and on the back of 2017 tour ‘The Best Of,’ The Kooks are due to release the latest instalment in a decade of pop-rock albums with ‘Let’s Go Sunshine.’ Before the full album release on the 31st of August, The Kooks bring us two new tracks: ‘All the Time and ‘No Pressure.’ Although there’s nothing ground-breaking in these new singles, they are a welcome step away from the brainless brit pop of The Kooks’ weaker records.
Frontman Luke Pritchard has labelled his new album as being about ‘heartbreak and falling in love’ and a record ‘that should get you dancing.’ The song ‘All the Time’ definitely adheres to this statement, with a driving bass line and slow building arrangement as the instrumentals come in piece by piece. Luke’s uniquely breathless and candescent voice is omnipresent in this song, a gratifying reminder of the vocals that have tugged on our heartstrings in hits ‘Naive’ and ‘She Moves in Her Own Way.’ But this song is more ambitious, confident and energetic than these earlier tracks. Filled with The Kooks’ trademark hooks and easy rhymes that hum in your head for days, ‘All the Time’ borders on electric funk and is an auspicious start to the new album.
If you hear something in ‘No Pressure’ that you haven’t heard before, throw a pound at it. Although this song is so ‘Kooks’ it hurts, it’s a relief to know that the band aren’t straying too far from their original sound. They go back to basics in this stripped back track, juxtaposing the over-produced tunes from previous album ‘Listen.’ Lively choruses paired with laid back, easy verses and vocals remind us of ‘Seaside’ days and the British innocence of early indie-pop. The charming familiarity of The Kooks’ sound is a welcome addition to a song from a band dearly missed by the British public.
The Kooks signature is all over these tracks and promises some more sun-drenched singles to come. These two singles are definitely an encouraging foresight into the band’s fifth album.
‘Let’s Go Sunshine’ is set for release on August 31 2018