Rating: 3 out of 5
Although easy to listen to, The Kooks’ newest album, Let’s Go Sunshine, lacks excitement. The indie-rock group’s 2018 album does a wonderful job capturing their classic alternative feel while simultaneously reworking their original sound to continue to grow as artists. However, Let’s Go Sunshine falls short of groundbreaking, leaving the listener wanting something more. The Kooks are missing an element of individuality that would set them apart from the classic mid-2000s indie-rock groups trying to make it in 2018.
The first track of the album, “Intro,” and the last track, “No Pressure,” share the same melody, making the album a cohesive, cyclical journey. “Kids” and “All the Time,” their first single release off the album, which has made its way into their top 10 most popular songs on Spotify, greet the listener with The Kooks’ familiar, angsty feel and steady beat, which is always fun to listen to, but nevertheless, is nothing revolutionary.
Throughout the album, The Kooks follow their upbeat trend, settling in a series of slower, emotion filled songs near the end of the album such as “Picture Frame,” “Swing Low,” and “Weight of the World” to finally culminate in a more euphoric mood with “No Pressure.” This trend produces the effect of resolution near the end of the album, resolving the previous angst into sweetly melodic tracks that leave the listener on a high note.
The Kooks follow their tried and true bittersweet rock anthem motif throughout the album with a series of tracks that invoke memories of classic teen movies. Let’s Go Sunshine creates a nostalgic yet familiar mood for The Kooks. This upbeat and playful album does not shock the listener into thoughtful listening but is nonetheless a solid, well-made album.