Previews: The Kooks at the Newport

From the November 24, 2011 edition

I have a hard time keeping all these British buzz bands straight, partially because too many of them opt for faceless “The (blank)” names instead of choosing something memorable like Arctic Monkeys. Now that they’ve lasted three albums, it turns out The Kooks are worth wading through the NME hype to discover, especially given the strides forward on their new “Junk of the Heart.”

The boys from Brighton have pushed their friendly pop-rock into more mature realms, but that isn’t a euphemism for a foray into Keane-like mediocrity. Nor do this outing’s advanced arrangements represent a Beatles-style bubblegum-to-artiste evolution, but Luke Pritchard and company are becoming masters of their craft nonetheless.

The Postelles, who were just here opening for The Wombats, return to open this show too.