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story & photos / JACK STANDEN

The Wiltern was packed full of an over excited female heavy audience. Priory opened the night with their huge sounding brand of guitar led electro pop. The duo, who hail from Portland, pack songs with a punch and did a fantastic job of getting the already full and excited Wiltern focused on a stage and engaging with the music. There first single “Weekend” saw some extra production elements to the live show cementing it in people’s minds. I for one went home and tracked down their brilliant record.
Closing out the evening, The Kooks took over the stage. It’s always hard for bands with big hits in their past to go on stage and promote a new release. It’s been 3 years, but their latest offering ‘Listen’ is out and The Kooks means business. As soon as the house lights dropped and the band ripped in to old favourite “Eddie’s Gun” Luke Pritchard and the rest of the band had the ecstatic crowd in the palm of their hand. Naturally the older material “Always Where I Need To Be”, “She Moves In Her Own Way” and “Sway” had the audience screaming, bouncing and singing along. The setlist was such that the adroitly shoe horned newer material such as  “Listen”, “It Was London” and “Around Town” landed on friendly ears and were received incredibly well. In particular the poppy and decidedly un-cool hook from “Down” had an entire room full of indie fans chanting “down down diggidy down de down”!
Luke Pritchard is an undeniably formidable front man, exploding with charisma and animated to the fullest with his jagger-esque moves. It was clear however that when the the band left the stage and he launched into “Seaside” and beautiful new ballad “See Me Now” that underneath his expert performance he is also a truly brilliant songwriter and troubadour.
The happy masses were sent home from The Wiltern with the huge closing song “Naive” ringing in their ears and a seemingly humble, grateful bow from The Kooks.


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