Kodaline at Hoxton Square Bar & Kitchen
The intimate venue of Hoxton Square Bar & Kitchen was the perfect place for an infusion of soft pop by Kodaline, exactly one month ahead of the release of their third album. Gifting to a select audience of fans an hour-long musical romance, the Irish band introduced some new numbers.
The night started with two classics from the group, Love Like This and High Hopes, the latter of which retained its grace in a slower rendition. The ensemble alternated these hits with three singles from the upcoming Politics of Living. The first, Follow Your Fire, was a more rhythmic experiment for the four-piece, with highlighted beats from both the drums and the strings; this was an interesting track, broadening the alternative creative spectrum of the quartet.
The enchanting character of this band lies in their lyrics. Although the main theme is overindulged love, the new album once again proved the text plays a big part in their compositions, the whole crowd relishing in the evocative lines: “You had the moves to make me dance with you, I always saw you reaching and catching stars”. The narrative intertwined with the notes is about tender relationships, but also about a relatable shared past and dreams becoming truth; the vocabulary of love was not too predictable, but still deeply emotional.
A real delight was new single Brother. Leaving the romance for a moment, Kodaline produced this fine ode to one of the strongest familial bonds: the one between siblings. The song touches on death, but puts it in perspective by reaffirming fraternal ties. The track may have a bittersweet aftertaste, but the crescendo and rousing music made this probably one of the most exquisite performances of the band. “And if you were drowned at sea, I’d give you my lungs so you could breathe,” Steve Garrigan sings, supported by the echoing voices of his fellow musicians.
In The One, the audience followed the singer and the beating drum – which was poignantly accentuated – before completely taking over in the final chorus.
The night was concluded with a gradual climax, the tone and strength of the chants rising (once again reinforced by the support of the fans) in All I Want. In this number, the predominance of the guitar – now in the hands of Garrigan, who swapped from the keyboard halfway through the gig with Prendergast – gave the song a pleasing and accentuated acoustic tone.
Photos: Yufan Wang
For further information and future events visit Kodaline’s website here.
Watch the video for Brother here