Looking for previews and reviews of SXSW 2019? Right this way.

SXSW 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | Live at Leeds 2016 | 2015 | 2014
Sound City 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | Great Escape 2018 | 2015 | 2013 | 2012

Don't forget to like There Goes the Fear on Facebook and follow us on Twitter!

Video of the Moment #2889: Kodaline

 
By on Tuesday, 4th September 2018 at 6:00 pm
 

So I made a bit of a mistake last month. I misspoke when I said Kodaline‘s album ‘Politics of Living’ would be out on the 10th of August on Sony Music. Turns out that the release date got pushed out, to the 28th of September. A later release date allows more time for previews, including this one. ‘Head Held High’ is an uplifting, upbeat number from the Dublin lads. And if a dinner lady’s childhood dream can come true as they do in this promo, I hope it inspires you to reach for your dreams, too. Watch it below. All of our articles on Kodaline – of which we have quite a few! – are this way.

 

Album Review: Kodaline – Politics of Living

 
By on Wednesday, 8th August 2018 at 12:00 pm
 

Kodaline Politics of Living album coverWhen I reviewed Kodaline’s sophomore album ‘Coming Up for Air’, I noted their “newfound self-confidence”. I also noted the Dubliners’ concerted effort to move away from their folkier, Gary Barlow-endorsed beginnings (‘Love Like This’, anyone?) and towards a more mainstream pop sound. That was 3 years ago. I don’t think I would have predicted this, but ‘Politics of Living’, out this Friday, is even more pop than their last. Is their confidence still on the up and up? I’ll have to see about that when they swing by Washington in December. Surely, this third album is a distillation of their attempts to continually evolve and grow as artists and musicians, with varying degrees of success. Like its predecessor, ‘Politics of Living’ is the product of their collaboration with producer Steve Harris and quite a few big names in the industry, including Steve Mac (Ed Sheeran), Johnny Coffer (RagNBone Man, Beyonce) and Jonas Jeberg (Dizzee Rascal, Kylie Minogue).

Kodaline appear to be most comfortable when they return to their roots, that is, when the production is relaxed, the tempo is slower and the emotions run high. The gorgeously simple melody that unfolds from the mostly a capella ‘I Wouldn’t Be’ sounds like it came straight from the lips of an Irish mother singing to her child. In this form, beginning with lead singer Steve Garrigan’s voice alone, then leading to perfect, four-part harmonies, makes the song unforgettable. ‘Angel’ and previous single ‘Brother’ (single/essay here) broach death and friendships, respectively, both holding the enduring strength of love with much reverence. They are a band who can uplift us even in our darkest days, the best example of this in the whistle-happy ‘Head Held High’. It isn’t hard to imagine that they’re sat “waiting for the sun to shine again” right along with us, supporting us.

The problem is when they go too far from their comfort zone to relate to more urban, Radio 1 palates. Replete with syncopated beats and flicks of tambourine, ‘Born Again’ and ‘Come Around’ sound too much like Glass Animals‘ retreads. If we were to view ‘In a Perfect World’ hit ‘All I Want’ as at the desperation stage of grief in a breakup, ‘Hell Froze Over’ is at the anger stage: “I would do anything for you / but I won’t do that again / we might never get closure / heaven knows it had to end”. Sure, we all get upset, but it’s hard to picture the squeaky clean and super sweet Kodaline lads truly lashing out at an ex.

Bridging the distance between the group’s best and their not so best on this LP are the grand stadium pop numbers that have been unveiled as previews prior to the album’s release. ‘Follow Your Fire’, wrapped up in its shiny production, is an upbeat, zippy pop number about living life without regrets. Piano-led “gospel-tinged” ‘Shed a Tear’ slows things down with a message akin to soul classic ‘Stand By Me’. ‘Politics of Living’ closes with the pop/soul mix ‘Temple Bar’, celebrating the famed district south of the River Liffey in Dublin. In it, frontman Garrigan repeats the rhetorical question, “where did it all wrong?” It’s one question I posed to myself about this album before I committed any words down for this review.

The elephant in the room on Kodaline’s third outing is the lack of direction. While the most heartfelt moments and poptastic singles are fantastic, the rest of the album misses the high bar the band already set for themselves. The variety of songs may serve to appeal to different groups of the music listening public but as a whole, the collection lacks consistency. Too bad.

6.5/10

‘Politics of Living’, the third album from Irish band Kodaline, will be released this Friday on Sony Music. Have a listen to ‘Worth It’, the latest taster to the album, in the embed below. To catch up on all of our past articles on the group, come through.

 

Video of the Moment #2868: Kodaline

 
By on Wednesday, 11th July 2018 at 6:00 pm
 

Back in the spring, we shared with you Kodaline’s then latest new material, ‘Follow Your Fire’. Watch the video for it through here. This week, the Dublin foursome have more new music for us, this time to preview their upcoming album out next month. Single ‘Shed a Tear’ is a taster to ‘Politics of Living’, which will drop on the 10th of August on Sony Music. Unlike ‘Follow Your Fire’, this new one is more soulful, described well as “gospel-tinged” on the press release. The instrumentation booms, while Steve Garrigan’s lead vocal is simultaneously bombastic and inspiring. Watch the music video for ‘Shed a Tear’ below, and stay tuned for ‘Politics of Living’, merely a month away now. For all of our coverage on Kodaline, which goes back quite a long way (!), go here.

 

Video of the Moment #2812: Kodaline

 
By on Tuesday, 27th March 2018 at 6:00 pm
 

Look all around. It seems like everyone is eager to get cosy with the very popular genre for synthpop. The latest band to ‘turn’ is Dublin group Kodaline, who started their career hawking folk-infused pop, fully embracing beautiful four-part harmonies and going acoustic. Their sound has become more mainstream pop as time as gone on, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it’s just taken some getting used to.

Kodaline fans, steel yourselves. Their latest single is described on the press release as “a slice of powerhouse pop”. ‘Follow Your Fire’ was also produced by hitmakers Steve Mac and long-time collaborator Johnny McDaid, the pair responsible for Ed Sheeran’s ‘Shape of You’. I’d be curious if this song ever got an acoustic treatment, because I don’t think the way it’s presented here does the band’s combined talents justice. Have a watch and listen to the upcoming single from the Irishmen below. ‘Follow Your Fire’ is expected to drop on the 4th of May. For more on the band on TGTF, go here.

 

Live Gig Video: Kodaline share acoustic performance of ‘The Riddle’ from a rooftop in Malaysia

 
By on Friday, 16th February 2018 at 4:00 pm
 

Jason Boland, bass player for Irish group Kodaline, is a keen videographer. In particular, lately he’s been flying his drone to take some pretty cool video from the air. In Kodaline’s latest video, Boland got to fly his drone while he and his band performed an acoustic version of ‘The Riddle’, which appears on their current EP ‘I Wouldn’t Be’, out now on B-Unique Records. And they didn’t choose just anywhere for the location of this video. They decided to film this probably as far from Dublin as they could, in the capital city of Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur, surrounded by the taller spires of other buildings around them. It’s definitely a unique performance video! Watch it below. For all of our past coverage on Kodaline – it goes all the way back to September 2012!go here.

 

Video of the Moment #2452: Kodaline

 
By on Monday, 16th October 2017 at 6:00 pm
 

Last Friday saw the release of a new record from Kodaline. The Dublin indie group’s EP ‘I Wouldn’t Be’ is available now from B-Unique / Sony Records. To celebrate the release, they’ve unveiled the promo video for ‘Ready to Change’ from the EP. The message of the song is simple, tough love: talk is cheap unless you’re committed to make the real changes you need in your life.

The video, directed by longtime collaborator Stevie Russell, approaches the subject matter more gently. A shy man who works at the zoo is a curiosity to a new female employee. Spoiler alert: her empathetic nature figures out a way to relate to him and get him out of his shell, much to the chagrin of the resident alpha male at the place. Root for the underdog by watching the video for ‘Ready to Change’ below. The group have announced a four-pack of live dates in the UK for December; these are listed alongside Continental dates in November here on their Facebook. For all of TGTF’s past coverage of Kodaline, follow this link.

 
 
 

About Us

There Goes The Fear is where we tell you about the latest music, gigs, and tours we love and think you should too.

We love music that has its heart on its sleeve, tells a story, swims around our head all day or makes us dance like no-one's watching.

TGTF is edited by Mary Chang, who is based in Washington, DC. She is joined by writers in England, America and Ireland. It began as a UK music blog by Phil Singer in 2005.

All MP3s are posted with the permission of the artists or their representatives and are for sampling only. Like the music? Buy it.

RSS Feed   RSS Feed  

Learn More About Us