Belfast Telegraph

Friday 31 October 2014

Kodaline at Belsonic: Uninspiring mish-mash, but fans can't stop singing along

Dramatic: Singer Steve Garrigan

The Belsonic festival continued last night with Irish indie outfit Kodaline.

Fans had come prepared for wind and rain, but on the night, the only washout was on the stage.

After main support act Tom Odell had done his thing, Kodaline made their dramatic entrance.

Dressed in black and accompanied by glaring strobe lights, it was visually arresting, if not musically so. The headliners' turgid stylings were an uninspiring mish-mash of indie, folk and arena rock, underscored by an annoying pretentiousness.

Lead vocalist Steve Garrigan had dropped to his knees within the first minute of the first song, howling like some sort of bargain-basement Bono. Indeed, the band seem to think they're the next U2, when really, they're more of a pseudo-Script.

But Garrigan has a long way to go before he can even match Danny O'Donoghue's charisma, never mind Bono's.

"We're a band called Kodaline," he announced.

"Thanks for coming to check us out."

Second song in and the frontman was wielding an acoustic guitar, crooning like his life depended on it. Then the harmonica came out...

To be fair, most of the predominantly female crowd were joining in on the choruses, and they certainly couldn't take their eyes off the foursome from Swords.

Fans at the third night of Belsonic to see Kodaline. By Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX
Fans at the third night of Belsonic to see Kodaline. By Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX
Fans at the third night of Belsonic to see Kodaline. By Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX
Fans at the third night of Belsonic to see Kodaline. By Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX
Fans at the third night of Belsonic to see Kodaline. By Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX
Fans at the third night of Belsonic to see Kodaline. By Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX

Indeed, Kodaline have come a long way since they were wide-eyed RTÉ talent show winners going by the name 21 Demands, even if their music remains less than demanding on the ears.

Two stars

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