Release Date: Oct 3, 2006
Record label: Astralwerks / Virgin
Genre(s): Indie, Rock
Asprightly four-piece armed with their parents' record collection and a stage-school training in Brighton might not make for the coolest of rock'n'roll bands, but they certainly make for one of the most proficient. The Kooks' debut is an impressive collection of polished pop that leans towards the 1980s English ska tradition while holding tight to the indie holy grail of an easy sing-along chorus against jangly guitars. They show their effervescent youth and blatant disregard for political correctness with titles such as Jackie Big Tits - which is somewhat of a red herring, as the number actually turns out to be a delightful love song.
The Kooks arrived fully formed in 2006, for their debut sounds like the work of a band well into its career: the confidence with which the foursome from Brighton play and the abandon with which Luke Pritchard sings; the witty songcraft and deft arrangements; the drama and fervor they unleash from the very first notes and carry through to the end. They display maturity but also play with the fervor of kids and project a wide-eyed charm that is very endearing. On most of Inside In/Inside Out, the band sounds like a more energetic Thrills or a looser Sam Roberts Band, maybe even a less severe Arctic Monkeys at times.