By David Hennessy
If you ask a music buff who they think the big Irish band of 2013 will be, the answer likely to come back is Kodaline. The Dublin quartet have been nominated for BBC Sound of 2013, MTV Brand New for 2013 and tipped as the next big thing of 2013 by Virgin Media. Their band’s debut single, the beautiful All I Want has featured prominently during a key scene in the high profile US television programme, Grey’s Anatomy. As if that wasn’t enough, lead singer Steve Garrigan and his band have received praise from everyone from DJ Fearne Cotton, Heat’s Alex James and even, Gary Barlow for their debut EP, All I Want. All these things make their debut album which is due out in March the most eagerly awaited debut we have seen in a long time. You could say the lads have come a long way since they competed on RTE’s You’re A Star in 2006/2007 under the moniker, 21 Demands.
The Irish World caught up with Steve Garrigan while he was recharging his batteries ahead of their forthcoming tour. “How’s it going, man? It’s good to hear an Irish accent,” Steve begins. “We got back from Holland yesterday. We’re going to America and then come back do a UK tour, then we’re going to Germany, France, back to Holland, Sweden. Touring’s so much fun. We’re a new band so we’re trying to get our head around stuff but it’s so much because we love music.”
How does it feel for Steve and his band mates Vinny May, Jason Boland and Mark Prenderghast to be honoured with nominations for the industry awards like those named above? “It’s cool. All these lists is great because hopefully they’ll introduce us to more people and then hopefully those people like us but everything is great.”
Little Green Cars are another Dublin band nominated for BBC Sound of 2013 and tipped by Virgin Media. Steve is pleased to see another Irish band making a name for themselves: “Yeah, it’s great. Over in Eurosonic, that festival in Holland, they were playing just before us in a different venue and we tried to get to their gig but we missed them because we had to do our own. Mark, our guitar player, loves them and apparently they’re really sound guys as well. I haven’t met them yet which is a bit annoying.
“The more Irish music that gets out there, the better for Irish bands. We’re big fans of Villagers now as well. I just got the new album there and we had it on in the van. When we got back from Holland, we listened to the whole thing from start to finish, really cool. It takes you somewhere else very trippy. He’s got a way with words, a poet.”
Has the massive positive response to All I Want taken Steve and the lads a little by surprise? “It’s great. We didn’t really expect much. We just made an EP and put it out there but people seem to like it which is great. At the end of the day we put our heart and soul into our music: As cheesy and as clichéd as that is, that’s what we do. It’s great people seem to like it for the most part. We finished the album before Christmas and we’re happy with it and we hope loads of people get to hear it and have an opinion on it, I suppose that’s the way it goes.”
While All I Want was received well for the song itself, it was no doubt helped by a meaningful video. A Beauty and The Beast type story set in a suburban office, the short film’s narrative reaches its climax at the same time as the melody’s crescendo peaks: “I think it’s important to have a message as opposed to just saying nothing. Everything we write is how we feel and it’s about life. So why not try and compliment that message? We try to make all our videos compliment the songs, that’s really important.”
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