The Kooks - Hello, What's Your Name?

by Jim Harris Rating:1 Release Date:2015-12-04

My first thought when I tried to get through this was: No matter how good the extra spices and added ingredients, stale porridge will still remain stale porridge. I first got introduced to The Kooks back in 2005 with a pre-release of their first album, Inside In/Inside Out. When I picked it to review over probably 15 other albums, my editor at the time said this: "Why would you pick that one? It sounds like a thousand Britpop bands out there today."

He was right of course but I committed and I gave it rather favorable review, even though it had none of the bite of those current mid-00s bands like Arctic Monkeys or Franz Ferdinand and the like. But it had certain likeability on such songs as ‘Seaside’ and ‘Ooh La’.

Unfortunately for me, my young daughter latched onto it and off we went in 2008 to see them in concert.  Young girls screaming everywhere and the lead singer trying to move like Mick Jagger and a lead guitarist who made some interestingly loud noises that weren’t that interesting.  But still, I thought, there might be a Who’s Next in them yet.  Not a chance.

They sound like total shit now, especially on their latest album, ‘Listen’, which have them jumping and jiving and then they proclaimed, ‘We didn’t rehearse before this album.’  Obviously. 

And I still have to listen to it in the car on long trips. I was even dragged to a concert lately but thankfully, I believe, she will have to drive herself next time.  There is still a healthy dose of young girls at the front of the stage, but they seem a bit college-freshman heavy now and their enthusiasm more nuanced.  (They are even starting to think they suck.) And my daughter absolutely hated the remixes. (They won't play that in concert, will they?)

Granted, unless it’s an electronic album, I’m not real big on remix albums anyway, and even if they did find some worthy mixers, I have yet to get through a single song.  Over the course of a couple weeks I have tried each and every song.  Nope. Skip.

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