Kodaline: Coming Up for Air album review

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So this may be a little overdue since Kodaline’s new album came out a few months ago, but oh well. I’m a Kodaline fan and I want to write about this! I immediately noticed that Kodaline has changed their sound from their previous album and this album, overall, has more of a pop feel and less indie, but it’s still great.

1. Honest: This is probably one of my favorite songs on the album. It takes a little while for the buildup but once you hit the middle of the song it sounds absolutely gorgeous. It also has great lyrics “say what is is you’re trying to say. But if you lie to me again, I’ll be the one that walks away.” It has a lot of raw emotion. I also like the instrumental piano part in the beginning.

2. The One: In my opinion, the music/instrumentals aren’t as interesting in this and are kind of slow. However, Kodaline definitely makes up for it with (usual) gorgeous vocals and again, amazing lyrics. This one is quite emotional as well. The instrumentals don’t sound like Kodaline’s usual sound, as I mentioned, but still a lovely song.

3. Autopilot: I’d say “Honest” is my second favorite, but this one takes first place. I liked it immediately. It has both interesting instrumentals with a nice variety of sounds and an overall lively beat, but it also has an emotional sound. His vocals are especially powerful and emotional in this song. I also really love the lyrics: “Feels like an empty space. You don’t enjoy the taste. I just need a place to hide. Somewhere to make you right.” It reminds me of their older stuff (in a good way)

4. Human Again: This song disappointed me a bit in the sense that their sound is quite different in this song, but on the other hand, I’m glad they’re experimenting with their sound. It just sounds less “sweet” and “soulful/emotional” like what I’m used to. It almost sounds like Arctic Monkeys actually with all the electric guitar and the style of singing. So I guess, in conclusion, I don’t dislike this song, but it caught me off guard because it’s so not their typical sound.

5.  Unclear: This song is pretty since it’s Kodaline, but not one of my top favorites. One thing I do like is that it has a “far-away”, “dream-like” sound. He does some beautiful harmonizing and it slowly is growing on me. But it’s not my favorite because compared to the others it sounds a bit more dull to me and doesn’t have a wide range of instruments.

6. Coming Alive: I like this one quite a bit, it doesn’t really have lyrics about a heartbreaking romance and doesn’t have raw emotion like some of the others. It’s more of a care-free sounding song with a lively beat. It puts me in a good mood! I also really love the electric guitar and drums..I was concerned that some of the other songs sounded too “pop” but this one reassured me.

7. Lost: I hate to say this, but this is my least favorite on the album. I didn’t even listen to the full song. His vocals sounded pretty whiny and it just didn’t catch my attention a lot. Don’t get my wrong, I love Kodaline and I think they’re an insanely talented band and some of their songs nearly bring me to tears, but this one doesn’t do it for me.

8. Ready: This song is another example of Kodaline experimenting with a new sound. There’s some synthetic instrumentals. There’s also upbeat drums and an overall lively feel. It puts me in an energetic mood and the lyrics are inspiring: “Follow what you love and you will love what you do. Never let the pressure tell you that you’re not. Capable of being everything that you want.” It’s great, but not one my my top few favorites though because it doesn’t catch my attention as much as a couple others.

9. Better: This song starts out with the classic Kodaline elements that I love so much (the acoustic guitar, the sweet and emotional vocals, soft sound) and then it adds other instrumentals like drums and a few synthetic sounds and some electric guitar and even strings. I’d say it has the best instrumental variety on the album. I really like this song. It mixes old and new elements of Kodaline. The lyrics aren’t as powerful to me as some of the others, but the powerful vocals and instrumentals make up for it.

10. Everything Works Out in the End: This is one of the more serious, emotional songs on the album. If you want something more upbeat, this isn’t the best choice. However, the piano and vocals are gorgeous. There’s a “wispy”, “dreamy” feel and lots of beautiful harmonizing. It has a sad sound to it, but the lyrics are full of hope. This song is probably the most beautiful on the album, but because it’s less upbeat, it’s not my favorite.

11. Play the Game: This song reminds me of “Human Again” with the more “hard-edge” style and a sound slightly similar to the Arctic Monkeys. It sounds cool, different, and interesting and as I keep listening to it, it has somewhat of an 80’s vibe. I think it’s great that Kodaline is experimenting with their style and the fact that all their songs don’t sound the same. However, it doesn’t have any of Kodaline’s classic, older charm. I wouldn’t say this is a “beautiful” song, but it has some nice electric guitar if you’re in the mood for that.

12. Love Will Set You Free: This song, like “Everything Works Out in the End” has beautiful piano. And it brings back some of the more “sweet”, “soft” vocals similar to the previous album which I love. It’s the last song in the album and it really fits as the last song. It sounds like an “ending song” for some reason. It’s very beautiful, but it does have a long buildup. However, once you get into the harmonizing part, theres more instruments and the emotion in his voice is more evident as well. It is a simple song I’d say, but a great last addition to the album.

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