Terribly dazzling about the Kooks’ debut, Inside In/Inside Out, was how it deliciously reeked of high school infatuation and bore its influences proudly because the band genuinely didn’t know any better. In their early 20s, the boys from Brighton have hit an odd slump with a sophomore record that is all too aware of the pressure that comes with being an adult songwriter.

Konk’s title pays homage to the Ray Davies-owned studio at which it was recorded, but the only blatant Kinks influence here is the story within “Mr. Maker,” an update on “A Well Respected Man.” Konk is half-sweet, half-glossy, its finest songs those which are stripped down: “See the Sun,” “Tick of Time,” and hidden track “All Over Town.” “Do You Wanna” is a big cheesefest, an odd attempt at seduction by a vocalist whose voice hasn’t caught up with his real age, topping off an unexpectedly disco balance of the Rolling Stones’ “Miss You” and Franz Ferdinand’s – yes – “Do You Want To.”

Lyrics are corny and revolve around a love lost or long-distance, and save for “Tick of Time,” there’s nary a hint of reggae influence to show off Paul Garred’s drumming or balance the hippie-fest that is Luke Pritchard. But Konk is a sweet effort from a few men of age.

Grade: B-

Konk is currently available.