The Kooks Release Long-Awaited Album, 'Let's Go Sunshine'
By: Emma Schoors
The Kooks’ latest effort Let’s Go Sunshine is a warm hug from the quartet that previously brought us tunes like “Naive,” “She Moves in Her Own Way,” and “Sway.” The 15-track record is proof that The Kooks still have a captive hold over prior fans, and just as intense of a hold over new listeners.
The band’s advertisements came in the form of singles and physical versions of the record. With vinyls, CD’s, tote bags, and cassettes galore, a special 45 of “The Argument,” a song not released as of yet online, was made available for a limited time.
The album begins with the nostalgic-feeling chorus of “No Pressure,” turning into the contrasting “Kids,” a song parallel to the likings of “Naive”, with bold lyrics and saturated drums from drummer Alexis Nunez. This song seems to have held as a fan favorite, many fans posting about the track on social media. “Fractured and Dazed” is a love letter from a younger frontman Luke Pritchard to his current self. Complete with sadistic lyrics and irony, it’s a song for the masses. The track details the things Pritchard misses about a past lover. However, Pritchard is currently engaged to fellow singer Ellie Rose, proving one can find love even under rough circumstances.
“Four Leaf Clover” debuted before the single came out officially, making its way through the band’s 2017 US tour. It’s a feel good tune, sporting interesting vocal melodies, danceable all the while. “All The Time,” a song about impulsive love, and “No Pressure,” a song about effortless love, also got their time to shine during the tour. “Chicken Bone,” the last single that the band put out, is a perfect last teaser of what to expect of the completed record. All the singles together create a fresh slate for the band, all the while holding faith in the past albums to create a backdrop for what’s to come.
“Believe” brings the signature bass lines, played by bassist Pete Denton. The lyrics and overall mood of the song reflect those of the 2014 effort “Listen,” with ever-changing vocals and melodies to keep you on your feet. “Tesco Disco” is the haunting addition that really turns a new leaf for the usuals genres explored by the four-piece. “Honey Bee” is an upbeat, sixties-sounding love song that makes anyone want to fall in love, sporting the constant L-word. “Initials for Gainsborg” takes listeners by surprise, chorus catchy yet just intricate enough to leave a unique impression.
The guitars and drums in “Pamela” are not ones you’d expect from a new Kooks album, but it’s a bittersweet echo of their first effort “Inside In/Inside Out,” and this vibe is making fans fall in love with the band all over again. “Picture Frame” is a beautiful tune that begs to be sung alone with. With acoustic guitars that almost say words themselves, guitarist Hugh Harris is bringing the softer sounds to the much needed front of the musical arena.
“Swing Low” almost sounds a Beatles-like, cinematic closure for the album, but it’s not over yet, which makes the song all the more interesting. “Weight of the World” brings back the acoustics with more of a melancholy-soaked, desperate plea. Pritchard brings back the narrative with more grit, yet keeps the class present throughout. As one expects the album to keep with this mood, “No Pressure” feels like a summer’s day. It reflects the true purpose of the band; to sing great songs and make people feel wonderful.
To find oneself in the position to be loved is one thing, and to be in the position to share that love is ten times more of a spectacular thing. When that love is drenched in the music someone makes, it makes all the difference. Looking for a lovely record? Let’s Go Sunshine is a perfect candidate. So spin it, stream it, blast it. And overall, live it. Life imitates art, right?