The Kooks at SummerStage! 

What do you guys think about The Kooks? If you’re a fan are you someone who has followed their careers closely or did you fall off somewhere after the Inside In/Inside Out and then KONK eras? I sadly have to admit that I’m apart of the latter group. I fell in love with them when I was younger and then somehow lost track of them. The Kooks are one of the many bands I associate with my high school and early college years and whenever I hear their songs I always get transported back to that time in my life. So much has changed. When their first singles were released in 2005 I was 14 or 15 depending on the time of the year and . . as I’m writing this it just dawned on me that was 10 years ago!

Now before I continue to age myself let’s get back to The Kooks! If you remember they were the headliners to a show I went to in Central Park for SummerStage and the openers were Joywave and Atlas Genius. Joywave got me moving and Atlas Genius left me wishing for a little something more. In case you are unfamiliar with The Kooks they’re a British indie band and the lead singer is Luke Pritchard. Going into this performance I didn’t have any expectations. I didn’t know anyone who had seen them previously and since I had forgotten about them I didn’t have any built up notions at all. When I bought tickets I just figured that it would be a fun night where I would get to reconnect with one of my old favorites.

I did get reacquainted with The Kooks but I wasn’t expecting to fall in love with them all over again. First off Luke has stage presence for days and I happily danced and sang my heart out to all of their old tunes just as much the newer tracks that I wasn’t as familiar with. They were so good! It made up leaps and bounds for the semi-disappointing previous act and I could sense that the rest of the crowd agreed with me. If you haven’t seen them you all should! I was listening to The Kooks on my way to the show and I have to say that Luke’s voice was spot on. He sounded exactly like the record and you can’t ask for much more when going to a concert.

Speaking of how he sounded, Luke has a pretty distinct voice. To me, when I hear his voice there isn’t really anyone else that comes to mind. I’m mentioning this because at the end of show The Kooks performed “Naive” which is arguably one of their biggest hits if not their biggest breakout song. This was the song that everyone, both the diehard and the passive fans, were waiting to hear and for some reason, they decided to perform that song with Keith, the lead singer of Atlas Genius. Their collaboration wasn’t bad. It wasn’t a waste of time. Still, I would have much rather heard Luke sing this song, this major hit for The Kooks solo. Instead, I heard Keith sing half of the song and let’s just say his voice didn’t exactly mesh well with the track. It wasn’t really his fault, it’s just that Luke’s voice overpowered his and some people in the audience weren’t too thrilled that their favorite song was being sung more like a cover than like the record they remember.

I feel like I’m being a bit rough on Atlas Genius, especially since I do still like them. It’s not intentional but I hope that when I see The Kooks again I might get to hear “Naive” the way I remembered it. Until then I’ll just listen to the tracks I’ve compiled below and wait for the next show. It was really hard to pick just a couple of their songs but I narrowed it down to 4 – enjoy!

What do you think of The Kooks? Share your thoughts and next week expect another Music Monday playlist!

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