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The Kooks surprise fans

By Carles Lopez Penalver
On April 23, 2014

The Kooks' latest release, "Down EP," is a four-song tease of their forthcoming album "Listen," which surprised its fans with refreshingly new sounds; a mixture of Kanye West's beats from "Yeezus "and The Kooks' distinctive upbeat acoustic guitar.
The British rock band released its EP with Astralwerks this past Tuesday, April 22. It features the songs "Down," "Hooray for Henry," "Hold on," and "Melody Maker." "Down EP" is the band's preview of its fourth album "Listen," which will be released on Sept. 1. The British based rock band consists of guitarist/vocalist Luke Pritchard, lead guitarist Hugh Harris, Alexis Nunez on the drums and bassist Peter Denton.
"Listen" will be the first co-produced album for the band, having both Pritchard and Hip-hop producer Inflo working together reshaping The Kooks' sound into a cheekier, funky style.
This EP is Pritchard's take on the most recent music trend seen in artists like Daft Punk, Little Dragon or even Metronomy's newest album - a retro sound filled with groovy rhythms, and R&B influences.
The song "Down" has all one could ask for, soul-filled vocals similar to those of Gill Scott-Heron's raspy voice, funky guitar riffs and retro, a capella-like vocals that establish the songs beat entirely. All 2:42 minutes of "Down" are packed with everything that makes for a well-developed song - pumping up any type of crowd.
The EP's fourth song, "Melody Maker," falls closer to what The Kooks fans would call home: acoustic guitar and emotionally charged vocals. However, one can still enjoy the band's newest musical approach: tambourines, claps and back-up choruses that seem to come from a British Woodstock-like era.
"Hooray for Henry" is the EP's most rock-sounding song. Pritchard's vocals are a mixture between Babyshambles' Pete Doherty and Wolfmother's Andrew Stockdale; fluctuating from a hungover and raspy voice, to high-energy vocals. Nunez's drumming is also really rock-and-roll, with constant drum bass and drum-rolls.
The Kooks made the perfect EP; it's good enough to listen to it by itself, but leaves one wanting more - making fans anxious for the album.

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