The Kooks - Live gig review

The Kooks

O2 City Hall

review: Katya Summerfield

I firstly want to say that it truly doesn’t get better than this for an 18th birthday treat.

Set in the breath-taking, highly ornate walls of the Newcastle’s O2 City Hall, the almost century old building united with the elevated crowd created a unique, unforgettable atmosphere.

The second I walked in, I was joined by the throb of the bass guitar and thud of the drums that resonated into every corner of the expansive venue, as special guests The Snuts performed their most popular song, Glasgow.

In celebration of the 15th anniversary of their debut album, Inside in/Inside out, The Kooks selected Seaside (my personal favourite) as their opening song. The sweet, sentimental lyrics of a summer love paired with the melodic strum of an acoustic guitar conjured up exactly what a fond memory feels like; nostalgic but bittersweet. The fragility in Luke Pritchard’s voice brings a personal aspect to the song- possibly an act of appreciation toward their hometown in sunny Brighton.

The striking light show to accompany the band stretched up to the far reaches of the soaring ceilings, with the Kooks surrounded by a low, ambient LED haze. To my amazement, lead guitarist Hugh Harris effortlessly plucked in near darkness during the high intensity guitar solo in Junk of The Heart. And of course, to finish off the brilliant show, the band came back to play their most cherished song; Naïve. The chants of the crowd seemed to overthrow the lead singer, as we all rose to the anthem, we have loved so dearly for over a decade. What a way to dust off the days of collective joy brought on by music.

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