British band The Kooks: Visual Questionnaire #12
The Kooks is experiencing a renaissance of sorts. Sometime in 2018, in the middle of production for their get-rich-or-die-trying sixth studio album Let's Go Sunshine, a new generation of young indie pop fans born and bred on streaming platforms like Spotify discovered their catchy guitar-inflected tunes by way of other bands like The 1975. Within a matter of weeks, their old-school singles like "Naïve" off their smash hit 2006 debut inside in/inside out and 2017's "Be Who You Are" garnered millions of hits. "Streaming has made it a fair playing field," explains frontman Luke Pritchard. "We've gotten to a point where we have a very new audience who think that "Naïve" is a new song. The song lives." This Saturday, the British band descends on our shores to headline the Garden Beats Festival at Fort Canning. In anticipation of their evening set, guitarist Hugh Harris breaks down some of their greatest inspirations below.
Greatest inspiration for songwriting and music-making: "This is the record where Luke and I meet; our tastes and our hearts are aligned here. We imitated the theatrical title font for our debut, inside in / inside out.
Most played song on Spotify right now: "I can't stop listening. I've loved Beirut for a long time now."
The most memorable city that you've performed in: "New York City. I'll never forget the first and lasting fizzy sensation that I felt from it. Its energy is unparalleled. We also just played there."
A musician or band who you admire and respect: "David Bowie. It's an obvious choice, which is ironic because it's something he would never encourage you to make, but I'm going against the grain."
The most impressive concert you've attended: "Rammstein. I didn't think people behaved like this in public. These guys get paid to."
One performer/designer/artist who you would love to collaborate with: "Ian Schrager. I'd love to design a touring stage set with him one day for one of our tours. It'd be really fun and I bet he'll have some pretty wild stories about Studio 54 too."
An unrealised project that you wish to complete sometime in the future: "I have around forty saved voice notes on my phone from when I used to sing to my daughter as a baby. I kind of made up lullabies to relax her. I want to fuse them with folk and jazz someday and make a record out of it."
A TV show/film/documentary that best captures the British music scene: How To Talk To Girls At Parties (2017) perfectly displays the punk scene in working-class England.