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The Kooks: Listen – Improvisation at Its Best

4 years ago by Chris

The British indie rock group, The Kooks, is back after a three year break with their fourth studio album, Listen, set to release on 1st September, 2014. The UK indie heartthrobs have made a brave leap by switching from their typical Brit rock style to electric church music, but that is something the band has always done.

The self-proclaimed ‘Pop’ band has experimented in several music genres, including rock, pop, reggae, and Britpop. However, Listen is something entirely new, and is different from anything they have ever done before. Produced by front man Luke Pritchard and hip-hop stylist Inflo, the album is an organic collaboration of both the artists. Switching from strings to sampling, the boys have definitely reinvented themselves, and have brought you catchy songs that most people will probably end up dancing to.

The lethal single, Around Town, is a perfect example, as it pairs lyrical simplicity with a catchy melody. It also features some jazzy instruments, starting off the album in full swing and sealing its fate as a potential Britpop classic.
The momentum persists through to the next track, Forgive & Forget, and cements the band’s new direction, thanks to a mix of exuberant percussion, appealing bass lines, and a hint of that 70’s funk. Down, the first release from the album is euphorically infectious, and has received accolades for its hip-hop and groove-infused loops.

The 11-track album is clap-happy and an expressive fusion of hard-hitting drums, hip-hop beats, tambourines, and gospel choirs. After their highly praised third album, Junk of the Heart, this album symbols a welcome and unsullied change for the boys from Brighton.

With a few days remaining until its release, the new album pays homage to their wide collection of influences, and is expressive and diverse from start to finish. Undoubtedly, it’s different from what’s normally expected of The Kooks, but the band has commendably and skillfully transformed their sound while conserving their integrity.

So, if you are a big Kooks fan, this album will not only live up to your expectations, but will also leave you boogying in your bedroom, and across dance floors.

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