Review: The Kooks - O2 Academy, Leeds

O2 Academy Leeds
18th December 2011 

"Thank you to everyone for coming, this is our last gig of 2011, so it means a lot to us!" - that was the message from Kooks lead singer Luke Pritchard after their sell-out gig at the Leeds O2 Academy last night.

The band graced the O2 stage in Leeds after the very vibrant support from ‘Scoundrels’. This was a much anticipated gig for the many of the hundreds, who came last night as it was a rescheduled gig from October, when Kooks front man Luke fell ill with a throat & lung infection.

There was a lot of pressure for the Brighton boys to really pull out all the stops to win this crowd over - and that they certainly did! The band - best known for their singles "Naive" and "Ooh La" opened their set with, what was a surprise to the fans, “Is It Me” (their second single from their latest album) “Junk of the Heart (2011)”, followed by “Always Where I Need To Be” their first single from their second album “Konk” (2008).

Then the fans went crazy for their incredible infectious hit “She Moves In Her Own Way”, taken from the multi-million selling first album “Inside In/Inside Out” (2006).
The boys put on an electrifying set of what was a very eclectic mix of their old favourites such as ‘Eddies Gun’, ‘Tick Of Time’, ‘Sofa Song’ to some of their most newer tracks, ‘Rosie’, ‘Eskimo Kiss’ and ‘Saboteur’ that really blew the hundreds of diehard Kooks fans away!

Luke interacted with the audience on all levels and put on a brilliant lead man performance! Many highlights of the night included a solo acoustic performance by Mr. Pritchard of "Seaside" which is a prelude to the first album “Inside In/Inside Out” which went down a real treat at the Academy!

The band played through the whole set with a mere 4 minutes rest, closing their last UK gig with their new single “Junk of the Heart” – from the very anticipated new album “Junk of the Heart” (2011), followed by a truly hair raising performance of their most popular hit “Naive”, which had the Leeds crowds in the arms of the boys!

It is without a doubt that ‘The Kooks’ are back on the Indie/Pop scene with vengeance after this sensational third album. 2012 could be another big year for the Brighton Boys...

All photos by Rachel Henshaw
Reviewed by Rachel Henshaw