Wednesday, April 2, 2008
The Kooks are coming atcha with their sophomore effort, entitled Konk (after the studio at which it was recorded), to be released on April 15th. For those out there that are already Kooks fans and enjoyed the first album, Konk seems poised to retain you as a fan. For those that really can't stand them, you'll probably continue to dislike them. I fit into the former category, but make no mistake, I am completely aware that the Kooks write radio friendly britpop and Luke Pritchard's lyrics often err on the side of sophomoric. But the hooks are big and everyone needs a little ear candy every once in awhile.
On Konk, the guitars are a little cleaner sounding and the fills and solos have a little less direction than on their debut, Inside In / Inside Out. But the drums and bass, always strong points for the band, are still here in full force. In fact, the strongest songs are the ones where bassist Max Rafferty is in the forefront, such as "Gap" and "Stormy Weather," the latter being an album highlight.
The band also attempts to cover some new ground, taking a stab at some post-punk dance rock with "Do You Wanna," which feels kind of like a modern take on Rod Stewart's "Do Ya Think I'm Sexy?" The album has a couple other great pop tracks, including the hippie-era feeling "Love It All" and recent live staple, "Sway," the latter coming closest to matching the urgency of some of Inside In / Inside Out's stronger material.
The only time the band noticeably stumbles is on "Shine On." It feels like a forced attempt at recreating "She Moves In Her Own Way," but without the great melody or hook, sort of like a song you'd hear at the dentist while getting a cavity filled.
Overall, Konk doesn't cover any new ground in music or for the Kooks in general. But for those who can appreciate great pop music, you'll find few that can do it so well as the Kooks. Fans will be pleased and haters will continue to hate. Consume accordingly.
Posted by kappy at 10:35 AM