Kodaline took the stage on Valentine’s Day at the Paradise Rock Club, crooning their indie rock tunes to a mixed crowd. The audience—an interesting combination of teenyboppers, single female twenty-something’s, and a handful of truly dedicated male fans—ate it up.
But while the younger fans were enthralled with the boys, a number of the fans were at the sold out show for the opener, a singer-song writer going by the title of LP.
Born Laura Pergolizzi, LP was described by a fan as a “young Bob Dylan” and the moment she set foot on stage, it becomes easy to see why. With a mop of curly hair and a crooning voice, Pergolizzi won the crowd with a cover of Coldplay’s “The Scientist” in between original songs featuring her ukulele. Now, pulling out a ukulele at a rock show might be a risky move, but Pergolizzi brought the warm, folksy vibe to wintry Boston and I, for one, was grateful.
She closed the set with her original, “Into the Wild” and the crowd hushed, awaiting Kodaline to take the stage.
As the boys took the stage, the audience was practically humming with excitement. They began with an upbeat number, though it wasn’t entirely clear if the microphones for the back-up vocalists were on or not. Lead vocalist Steve Garrigan’s mic was definitely on however, and upon playing “Way Back When” the crowd really became engaged. Singing back nearly every line, the benefit of a small venue was apparent: everyone knows every song.
“Way Back When” pays tribute to the band’s own history, since Garrigan and Mark Prendergast, the keyboardist, have known each other since they were 8 years old.
“We all grew up in the same state, just outside of Dublin,” said Garrigan. “I sang and Mark one day got a guitar and we started a band.” They met drummer Vinny May and began playing shows.
“We started gigging around Ireland, playing covers mainly, and then we started to write down songs and eventually someone heard our songs and asked ‘do you want to record it?’ And of course we took the opportunity. And then we needed a name, cause we were just a band you know, we were still in school, we’d just grown a little. And we became Kodaline. It was a very natural process.”
Outside of the UK, the band is often compared to Coldplay, a fact Garrigan didn’t seem to mind.
“Coldplay is a great band,” said Garrigan. “We grew up listening to Coldplay…We could be compared to someone like the Backstreet Boys. But it’s just not our cup of tea you know? No but we like Coldplay, they’re cool.”
But if their fans made any sort of comparison on Valentines Day, they kept it to themselves. It was clear that from the teenyboppers to the college-aged men, everyone was there for quartet on stage, which, as an encore, hushed the entire crowd and began snapping. Garrigan and Prendergast got the crowd chanting a quiet “yeah!” before performing an acapella version of Sam Cooke’s “Bring It On Home To Me.” They closed the show with Kodaline’s original, “All I Want.”