Show Review: Kodaline @ Emo’s Austin, TX

After being stuck on a bus during an almost 12 hour drive I find myself in Austin, TX in hopes to see a promising and talented Irish band, Kodaline. If music itself is all about the feeling of it, live shows are the ones in charge to make you actually feel the music. It’s not about what the lyrics say, it’s about what it makes you feel and what it means to you, and the person next and/or behind you.

Though I haven’t been following Kodaline since the beginning, I’ve been there watching them grow over this past year and a half and I just wouldn’t be able to be writing this if it wasn’t for my partner in crime and one of my best friends who, actually is the one to blame for introducing me to these talented Irish lads. This is the first time I’ve seen the band live, and trust me when I say, I’m sure it won’t be the last. I would take on this adventure over and over again.

With the help of their opening act Gavin James who, I need to confess, is someone I didn’t know until that night, the show was lovely. The also Irish singer/songwriter made the crowd swoon and stole some good laughs with his sense of humor and talent. With a lovely accent and a smooth voice, he warmed up the stage and the crowd for what was coming next.


Lights go down, smoke is out, and the cheering of the crowd gets louder. Then Vinny’s silhouette makes its appearance on the drums, then comes Jay on bass, Mark on guitar, and Steve on the lead vocals.

First song, “Ready,” is one from their new album Coming Up For Air, and it totally rules live. After that, “A Love Like This” from their debut album In A Perfect World, and I was just so amazed by how good it sounds live and how Steve’s vocal abilities manage to hit perfect notes and play the harmonica.

There were a lot of things I loved about their performance, starting with how they sound pretty much exactly as if you were listening to the album both musically and vocally speaking. One thing is for sure, the four of these lads can sing and make beautiful back-up vocals, guitarist Mark Prendergast even had a solo moment during “Unclear” and it was wonderful not only because that song is one of my absolute favorites, but because I’m pretty sure I lost myself somewhere during the song; it also left me speechless from beginning to end.

The show was full of energy and the band showed us what they’re capable of – there were rocking vibes, acoustic sets, beautiful songs accompanied by the keys and Steve’s magnificent voice along with beautiful Mark, Jay and Vinny’s vocals.

Their main set ended up with “Love Will Set You Free” which is track from their album Coming Up For Air, which, needless to say how much I love that song, how beautiful it is live and it even made me shed a few tears just because. I’m not even sure why or how, but that songs hits me right in the feels and means so much to me. During the encore, the lads went back on stage to perform one of their most recent singles titled “Honest” to which I basically sang my lungs out. Then a wonderful and acoustic mash-up of the songs “Big Bad World,” “Talk” and “In A Perfect World” just to clear the path for the final song, where they invited their homeboy and opening act Gavin James to join them on stage to perform “All I Want.”

You know, there’s actually a feeling I can’t and will probably never be able to describe, but it makes me happy to be a part of the crowd and look up to the artist on stage and see a smile on their faces and it just makes your heart warm. Kodaline was no exception; throughout the show you could easily see them smile at the sight of a singing and cheering intimate crowd.

The show was absolutely mesmerizing. I can’t think of another word to sum it all up. Kodaline is sure making their own name and standing up to who they are; quoting lyrics from their song “Play the Game,” they sure don’t need to be pretenders, they just gotta be themselves. And trust me, you guys in Kodaline, we totally and honestly love you for who you are both as humans and musicians.


Set List

Ready / A Love Like This / Way Back When / Unclear / One Day / Lost / High Hopes / Coming Alive / The One / All Comes Down / Play The Game / Brand New Day / Love Will Set You Free

Honest / Big Bad World / Talk / In A Perfect World / All I Want

Naty Cuéllar

Naty Cuéllar

Music enthusiast. Photography lover. Graphic designer. Pro at Netflix binge watching, drinking coffee and swooning over puppies.