Kodaline’s new record, Politics of Living is more of the same that we heard from the band with their last record, Coming Up For Air. It’s modernized brit-infused Americana that’s heavy on production. Kodline are kind of like Ireland’s answer to a mainstream pop band. Steve Garrigan is matched as a songwriter by very few and as a vocalist and lyricist, he’s just as good.
The result of taking some tour dates off in 2017 to write, Politics of Living is a good record. The twelve songs that the band wrote for this record are all exceptional; they vary in mood and style but musically-speaking they’re all top-notch. The production is terrific. Whether it’s the vocal recording of Garrigan, the choir guest vocals, the synth work, or the traditional instrumentation, you’re not likely to hear an album that’s been produced better than the latest from Kodaline.
There are plenty of highlights on this album “Follow Your Fire” and “Hide and Seek” are poppier numbers that showcase Garrigan’s ability to write an infectious melody. “Angel” is a softer song that has a ton of sync-license potential. “Shed a Tear” features a heavy rhythm and a choir harmonizing with Garrigan – it’s the best song on the record. Then, “Brother”, “Head Held High”, “Hell Froze Over”, and “Temple Bar” are all great songs too.
As an album, Politics of Living feels a little disjointed, but when you go through a few times you’re going to find at least four songs that you’ll love. Steve Garrigan and his band can write some infectious melodies. It might not play like a traditional album, but it’s still a great collection of songs that everybody will find something they’ll like on.