Kodaline

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Sometimes an interview can be the most awkward, stilted conversation you will have all week then there are bands like Kodaline. In the fifteen minutes or so that we talked this second time around, we consistently went off on little stories and wandered from the interview questions which lead to about twenty more minutes off record. Our interview was more like a conversation then a standard interview and I really think it helped Mark Pendergrast, guitarist and Jason Boland, bassist, to open up more.
The band has had a quick climb up the success ladder here in the states, particularly in Boston and are booked to come back stateside in February fresh after recording their new album in January. We talked about their experience touring here as a British band, their first musical experiences and Jason being a true rebel amongst other things. You know, after his boy band phase. With the band killing it to a sold out house only an hour after our interview took place, it's clear the kind of success this band will have in 2014 and I for one will most definitely be watching them again at the Paradise come Valentine's Day. Make them your Valentine that day as well!

This is the first proper US headlining tour for you guys. This show even getting moved to a bigger room. 1975 selling out the same room last week. Kind of being at the same level. How has this tour been going considering it is your first headlining run?
Jason: Every show's been selling out. Well, so far.
Every show has been completely sold out so far?
Mark:So far, yeah. We're in New York tomorrow but it is the biggest room tomorrow. It's good.
Jason: Did you say The 1975 were here last week?
Yeah, they played here last week and they sold it out too. I interviewed Lovelife last night. Do you know that band Lovelife? I interviewed them last night and when I said I was interviewing you, they were like "woah!" They were like , "Do you know huge they are in Europe?" They were really excited.
Mark: In the UK, we're playing like 5 or 6 thousand capacity rooms. The London show at Brixton holds five thousand. We're doing the O2 arena in Dublin which is twelve and a half thousand. It's starting out here too.
Jason: We haven't played these size venues in a while. We're kind of growing into our own here touring here. We're on tour in the UK in December. We haven't played in these size venues in a while though. But this one is incredible.
I love The Sinclair.
Mark: We've been playing at a lot of little dive bars so when we walked in the door, we were just like Shit, man! This is amazing. Can I swear in this interview?
You can swear, it's okay!
Mark: Fuck! No, it's cool.
Jason: Yeah it's nice! When we walked up, it was cool because it's the first time we've seen our name only on the marquee. Took a picture and everything.
Then maybe how has it been, because you know a lot of bands from Britian who work and work and work to get this level. Like you know, Frank Turner, You Me At Six and all these bands. For you guys, it was kind of quick US touring wise. You did the opening tour for Airborne Toxic. It came pretty fast for you guys so maybe what advice would you give to British bands trying to break out here?
Jason: I feel pretty weird giving advice to bands.
Well, it came pretty fast for you guys though compared to other acts who toured here for years and now are breaking.
Mark: Stick with it.
Jason: Yeah, just stick with it. We were really lucky. The album came out last week.
Mark: Days ago actually. What day is it?
It's Tuesday.
Jason: It is a week then.
Yeah, a week then.
Mark: I clearly don't know my days, it's alright!
Jason: So we feel kind of weird giving bands advice because we're so new to it.
Mark: Go on support touring.
Jason: Yeah, you got to do support touring. Like we came out at first when no one really knew us and did some shows in New York, one in LA, one in Boston.
You played Boston yeah at Church, like a radio show?
Mark: Yeah it was for Radio BDC. That was weird actually. We just made the announcement a few days before on the radio and it was brilliant. We came out with Airborne and that venue was fucking great.
It was packed for you too. Like it was already filled when you guys went on I felt.
Jason: That tour was really helpful to us because it took us to a lot of places in America that we had never been. Or we wouldn't necessarily go on holiday. So, it was really good. On this tour, we kind of go in a similiar direction. It was a really good tour for us. It exposed our music to a lot of people.
Mark: Yeah, a lot of people that come to our shows now say they saw us with Airborne.
Well, it's neat for it to be moved to a bigger room then sell out. It's pretty great. The demand must have been crazy because this room is about three times the size of what you were originally playing.
Jason: Really?
Oh yeah!
Mark: We're coming back, oh wait I can't talk about that yet.
You can tell me after (laughs).
Jason: Well, we'll be back in the new year. Undisclosed but yeah we're coming back.
Mark: It's so much fun. It's just so different to tour the United States. It's just huge. Drives are crazy. Five hour drive tonight. In the Uk, everywhere is like three hours away from each other. The scenery too. We were down in Texas awhile ago it was crazy. This tour has us driving through Montana and there was nothing there. We're going to drive from Minneapolis from Seattle. Two or three day drive. That's supposed to be really amazing.
That's coming up?
Mark: Yeah, that's in like two weeks or something like that.
Jason: Because it's such a big country, every state is like it's own country. To us at least.
Mark: Have you been to the UK?
I haven't but I've interviewed like countless British bands. Like Frank, You Me At Six on the poppier side but yeah I've been doing it for like four years. So I've gotten an idea from them on how small the country is compared to the United States.
Jason: I've never actually listened to Frank Turner.
He's great. He's playing House of Blues where you guys played.He's headlining there next month.
Mark: Amazing.
Jason: I don't remember any of his songs but he was at Reading festival. While we were doing backstage interviews, the crowd for main stage was massive for him. Singing back the words at him.
Oh wow, I saw Biffy Clyro like last week who I know headlined this year.
Mark: Yeah! You saw them here?
Yeah they played here like two weeks ago with Morning Parade.
Mark: Where were they playing?
Brighton Music Hall.
Jason: How big is that?
Only the size of this. No, it's smaller.
Jason: They play insane Euro venues.
It took them a really long time to break here. That's why I'm saying you guys are selling out a bigger venue then a band that's been a band for sixteen years.
Mark: They're one of our favorite bands.
Jason: It's hard when it goes the other way around because when they go back to UK and Europe they sell out arenas.
Mark: Oh jeez.
You're like 'it may be different here but when we go back home, not so much'.
Jason: They kick our asses. They would hand them to us on a pedestal.
Mark: It's really weird that Biffy Clyro played a room smaller then this.
Tour Manager: They normally play to about five to six thousand. Is it because they wanted to play a smaller show?
No, that was the first time they've sold out that room size in Boston. It took them a long time here.
Jason: Do you know Frightened Rabbit?
Yeah, they play a two night stand here in Boston.
Jason: What club?
They play Paradise. Then you said the album here only came out last week. How did you go about the songwriting process for that one? Maybe in comparison to the EP?
Mark: The writing is me and Steve, the singer who sings the main part and I write as well. We both come together and we'll bring it to the lads and we'll bring it into the studio and turn it into what you hear.
Jason: Yeah. It's a pretty simple process. We'll put in our two cents.
Mark: The lyrics themselves are made up by me and Steve.
Then maybe considering it just came out here but it's going so well in America, are you even considering like working on that next album?
Mark: Oh, we've started it. Yeah we kind of started writing it the day we finished the first one.
Jason: Once the album had been finished. We had this deadline for when we had to finish the album. Afterwards, we still had songs that we were working out in the rehearsal room that we were working on as new songs. In January, we're going to start recording the new material but the album won't be out for another year.
Mark: Me and Steven have a little home out in the country. We're going back to where we kind of wrote and recorded the first one. So many ideas and shit. So in the winter, we're just going to go there and finish them off. Then go back on tour for what looks like a year. We get back from this tour, go straight into a UK tour. We're bringing our engineer with us. He's going to hop on the tour bus for about five days where we'll demo and record.
Then maybe for each of you a soft one! The first CD or first cassette you ever bought? Then the first concert you went to?
Mark: It was so terrible.
You got to say it. Even if it was terrible.
Jason: I don't remember. What comes to mind at the moment is Will Smith.
Mark: First one I ever bought or was given to me?
That you bought.
Mark: Fucking Marilyn Manson.
Jason: It was either Will Smith or Five for mine.
Mark: Oh, Five! Scratch that. Do you know Five?
Yeah, british boy band.
Jason: Did they ever tour America?
They came to America but obviously not a thing anymore. I don't think they're even a thing in general.
Mark: They are now, yeah! Five's back together .All those nineties pop bands come together.
They just got inspired by One DIrection apparently. I've only ever interviewed one like British boy band. I mean they still play, I think, maybe they just broke up. JLS?
Jason: They did, yeah.
Well they were super nice but I know it's probably a lot different with the craziness of British boy bands actually in Uk.
Jason: There was like this big festival where a lot of nineties pop bands got back together and went on a arena tour together.
Mark: Like Five got back together but only four of them did it. So yeah Five was my first. What was the album called? I wish it was like The Velvet Underground or something like that.
Well maybe do you remember your first concert? Was it any better?
Jason: Probably a fucking Five concert.
Big fan!
Mark: My first concert was Metallica.
Jason: Was it?
Mark: Yeah! No! It was Green Day or something like that.
Jason: Mine was an Irish blues band filled with harmonica players. I got taken to the show with my mom and my dad.
Mark: Nah, it's the first gig you went to with your mates.
Jason: Oh, the first gig I want to with my mates was Snow Patrol. I didn't have to go to school the next day because I stayed at a friend's house. I had to hide around where I went to school was like four or five hours before I could go home because I didn't want my parents to find out.
Oh snap you were a rebel.
Mark: Huge rebel, huh!
Jason: It was one of the first few times I got a bus by myself as well.
Mark: What a big day!
That's a big day in your life.
Jason: Damn right! I think I got off at the wrong stop and had to walk for ages.
That's so funny, that's good. Then obviously you kind of talked about how you going to be working on the new album in January and you'll be back touring in February. The tour that you can't talk about but are you just going to be keeping busy? Like kind of doing what you've been doing? Like album, tour, album.
Mark: If we're not on tour, we're writing.
Since you've already been in Boston three times this year.
Mark: Yeah, it's our third time in Boston. It's crazy. It's fun.
Jason: I think it's like our fourth trip to the states this year and yeah, third time to Boston. This year has kind of gone so fast. It's kind of crazy. To be coming back is cool as well. As Mark was saying, it's all we'll be doing. Gigging and then writing and recording stuff. We have time off with a few weeks over Christmas.
Mark: Like we'll have some actual time off at home. When we're home, I think I will just kind of sit around at a piano. Steve's the same.
Well you wouldn't come here this much in one year if you didn't really love it.

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