Album Review // THE KOOKS ‘Let’s Go Sunshine’
Making a bold statement about who they are, The Kooks re-define themselves on their highly anticipated fifth album Let’s Go Sunshine.
When people mention The Kooks, you can immediately picture a guitar-driven British pop, and the band only act to cement this signature sound on their fifth album Let’s Go Sunshine. It’s an honest record about lost innocence and relationships breaking down, portraying the modern British urban life.
Kicking in with the upbeat Kids, which features hearty sing-along moments and a massive chorus, you’ll definitely have a good time with this track. With a hearty kick of defiance as Luke Pritchard sings “I’m not trying to be what you want me to be”, you’ll be electrified as the “woah”s kick in with impassioned drums and a blazing guitar solo fires through.
The sultrier All The Time opens with an acoustic guitar, before giving way to a groovy bass line that continues through the dark vocals in the verse. The yearning of the lyricism translates musically as well, as orchestral strings swell under the guitars and vocal harmonies breeze through. Echoing guitars begin the slow Believe, which is tinged with a lovesickness that will be familiar to anyone in love. Ending with a chorus accompanied by a solo guitar, the emotion is sure to be felt by even the coldest of hearts.
A similar feeling prevails in Fractured And Dazed, and with its twinkling melodies, it’s a dreamy tune that will leave you dazed. There’s a sense of familiarity in Chicken Bone as it brings back the band’s old sound with a new twist, and as claps give way to instrumentals, there’s a personal feeling as Pritchard divulges his personal thoughts and feelings. The familiarity continues in Four Leaf Clover, which has hints of Inside In / Inside Out in its looping bass accompaniment and upbeat drumming. It’s sure to be an indie anthem that finds its way into many summer playlists, as the catchy chorus makes its way into your mind.
Equally catchy is Honey Bee, which has a funky feel to it that will make you clap along as the syncopated bass groove out. Initials For Gainsbourg, whilst doing nothing new, still makes a classic The Kooks tune that hammers home the sound the band is known for. You’ll be moving your feet along to the energetic Pamela, which is driven by a thrumming bass and spirited drumming. As the the second chorus ends with an anthemic sing-along, no time is wasted before a rousing guitar solo keeps the momentum going. Never faltering for a moment, the searing intensity of the track makes it one of my personal favourites on the album.
The balladic Picture Frame dazzles with its soaring vocals and swaying melodies, and it’s a track that will tempt you to slow-dance with its lilting harmonies and cinematic soundscape. Emotion ripples through the vocals, and poignant strings only act to layer on the intensity. The optimistic No Pressure ends off the album, and it’s a gorgeous blossom of euphoria as the chorus hits in with “We’re just having a good time, honey. No need to apply no pressure”. And that’s a fair summary of how it feels to listen to this album; just having a jolly good time in classic British fashion.