The Skinny: Toe-tapping, nice-boy Brit pop with some fierce, muscular production. This debut record produced no less than six singles between the summer of 2005 and autumn of 2006. It sold a couple million copies worldwide, even though you might’ve missed it. Check it out!
Sounds like: Travis, Spoon, Arctic Monkeys, The Thrills, Viola Beach, XTC, Graham Parker, The Strokes
Deeper Thoughts: I have a young daughter and I hope her first boyfriend is in a band like The Kooks. These fresh young fellows from Brighton seem like really nice boys. Their groovy, head-bobbing tunes are heavy on guitar strum, bashy drums and driving rhythms with a little hitch in their giddyup. This is guitar pop/rock (more pop than rock) that you can bounce to. The high energy and sinewy rhythms will drive the ladies crazy. Love the charming thick accents and sweet harmonies in the ensemble singing. At the time, overshadowed by Arctic Monkeys’s huge debut record.
The Sonics: Lots of hi-hat, crash and ride/dome cymbals that alternate between bright and shrill. Heavy on Strat chime (which is nice) and heavy acoustic strumming (which quacks out occasionally). The great drum parts get buried in the mix on some tunes. Good and loud, but lacks thump and crunch at some key moments. An A&R man’s dream — most of the tunes sound about the same.