By Aimee Huckeba
Artist: The Kooks
Album: Let’s Go Sunshine
Label: Lonely Cat
Release Date: August 31, 2018
After a long-awaited four years, The Kooks have released their fifth studio album, Let’s Go Sunshine. The Kooks showed signs of changing their sound with their last album, Listen; with the new record comes the full transition into mainstream pop. Several of the tracks sound as though they can be played on a top 40’s station without question. Prior to this release, The Kooks never seemed to fit in that genre. Let’s Go Sunshine‘s sound was unexpected and slightly disappointing if you compare their first three albums, Inside In / Inside Out, Konk and Junk of the Heart.
Let’s Go Sunshine does have its highlights that remove it from the mainstream chopping block. “Chicken Bone” is the easiest to groove to, because the exciting sound can be felt through the whole song. “Fractured and Dazed,” which was released as a single ahead of the album, holds a somber message. It focuses on a fractured relationship where the an individual does not want let go of the love while they cling to the other person who is drifting. “Pamela” is the closest to the Kooks’ old sound, complete with lead singer Luke Pritchard’s strong British accent. “Weight of the World” opens with a piano followed by rumbling bass and the trumpets that emerge half way through the song to finish it out. These highlights are enough to give the early 2000’s Kooks fans hope for resurgence.
“Four Leaf Clover,” “All the Time” and “Believe” are tracks that are strikingly similar to other top alternative-pop songs. The album, as a whole, is not bad; however, these tracks keep the album from sounding original and unique. These tracks have loveable aspects but do not stand out against today’s alternative hits. The Kooks have been successful with their previous albums by bringing forth new sounds and merging genres, so it is disappointing that this album fell short. Whether or not Let’s Go Sunshine is the best or worst Kooks album, it is a giddy summer album that will give the approaching autumn and winter less of a glum mood while listening.