The Kooks Entertained Manhattan Last Week
The Kooks, an English rock group that formed in 2004 and blew up a short two years later, sold out Terminal 5 in Manhattan last week. The crowd was roaring the moment lead singer, Luke Pritchard, came dancing on to the stage. His goofy interactive personality screamed a typical Brit demeanor. Groups of people were dancing together in the back by the bar and jumping up and down together in the front. The Kooks proved to be a hard band not to dance to, whether you knew the songs or not.
Written and Photographed by Miranda Chiechi
The indie rock band are on tour for their fifth studio album that came out in August 2018. “Thanks for coming out to see a band that’s 15 years old,” yelled Pritchard halfway through the show. You wouldn’t have guessed they have been around 15 years, being only in their thirties and having the crowd scream their songs like they just hit the radio. Every phone went up when the first two chords of “Seaside” started playing, a hit from their first album. Their live performance was akin to how their studio recordings sound. The group’s music is influenced by a myriad of things, including the 1960s British Invasion. They started their music career off with pop rock hits and further developed their sound over the next 15 years.
Pritchard broke the show up with The Kooks’ heart wrenching ballad, “See Me Now,” about his dad who died when he was young. His solo on the piano transitioned straight into a dance tune, showing just how versatile The Kooks can be as a group. Pritchard’s dad continued to influence him on the newest album with single, “Honeybee.” As Pritchard said in a Billboard interview, he never got the chance to sing with his dad, but “spliced his dad’s vocal” from a demo he did in the 60s into “Honeybee.” His dad sings the second verse, while Pritchard, the first.
The Kooks ended the night with, of course, one of their first big hits, “Naive,” which the entire venue went crazy for. Like Pritchard jokes in his Billboard interview when asked how the band decides to put together a set list now that they’re on their fifth album – “If I don’t play ‘Naive,’ they’ll probably ask for their money back.”