Kodaline hails from Ireland and was originally known as 21 Demands. The band consists of Steve Garrigan (vocals, guitars), Mark Prendergast (guitar), Vincent May (drums) and Jason Boland (bass guitar) and you could describe their music as indie rock or alternative pop/rock. So far, Kodaline has released two albums (In A Perfect World and Coming Up For Air) and the singles The One and Honest both reached the top 40 in the UK Singles Chart. On the notorious Pinkpop Festival I have a talk with guitar player Mark and drummer Vince about the band and their music.

This is your third time at Pinkpop.

Mark: “Yeah, and now on the main stage, the first two gigs here were amazing. This country is great and we always had a good connection with the Dutch audience and the press were also always very friendly to us, till now, ha ha…”

Why does Holland like Kodaline?

Vince: “I haven’t got a clue, I have really no idea, you tell me, you are Dutch, right?”

You play on the main stage today, nervous?

Mark: “Yeah, kind of, it is the main stage and there are lots of people, so, but I hope that there are many people who know and like our music. But it is really exciting today and we are going to play two new songs, so yeah, we are a bit nervous.”

What are your expectations?

Vince: “Well, I do not know, really, I hope that there will be a large audience and I always love the backstage area here at Pinkpop, so, we can hang out with other artists, love it.”

Mark: “Vince is getting married in July and we recently had a bachelor party in Las Vegas and that was truly amazing. But we have another marriage in September as Jay (Jason) will be the groom and we will have a stag party in Amsterdam for three days then!! But today almost feels like the last day in school, actually, ha ha..”

Kodaline is very popular in The Netherlands; and how is the situation in other countries?

Vince: “In Ireland, our home country, it is also ok, but we started in really small clubs and now a couple of years later we already play great gigs and that is actually quite scary. The competition is very keen although in Ireland bands do not really compete with each other; they help each other.”

How would you describe the sound of Kodaline to an alien?

Mark: “ha ha….We try to play with emotions and we write and sing about real things and it is a kind of alternative guitar music. I guess, ha ha… Our lyrics are important as you have to write and sing songs that you have to believe in. The connection to the songs is really important and we almost always write the music and the lyrics together; that is the best way, I think…”

When can the fans expect a new album?

Vince: “We have got 90% of the new, third album finished, so… We probably need one more week in the studio to finish the album and then in the fall we will tour Europe again with the new material. The reviews of the second album (Coming Up For Air) were really excellent, so we hope that everybody will like the new material as well. There will be 11 new tracks on the album and we will also release a de-luxe version with 14 or 15 songs for the die-hard fans. Actually I think that we will probably play two new songs today, here at Pinkpop; let’s give it a try and see how the audience  reacts to the new tracks. The new album will be more experimental and rockier as we need to change our music with every album because we do not want to get bored! “Brother” will be the new single and I think we are going to play that today, right Mark?”

Mark: “I guess so, but playing new songs is always nerve racking and scary; there is always a lot of pressure on new songs…”

What do you consider to be your greatest musical influences?


Mark: “Talking Heads, Biffy Clyro, two amazing bands and huge influences!”

Future plans?

Vince: “Release the new album a.s.a.p. and we have two weddings this year and we will be playing on 8 festivals, make a video, do a lot of promotion for the new album and so on, busy, busy, busy..”

Any plans for a DVD?

Mark: “We have talked and thought about it and maybe next summer we will make and release one.”

Mark, you once said: “The music we write does not appeal to critics”, is that still the case and what exactly did you mean by that?

Mark: “I did, didn’t I?”

It is going to haunt you for the rest of your life, I guess….

Mark: “ha ha, yes, probably. But anyway, we never write songs for anyone, we just write and compose songs for ourselves. That may sound rather selfish, but that is just the way it is. We do not want to please and we want to do and say what we have to say! Some people may not like what we do but we do not care. The most important thing is that people come to our shows and that they like what they hear and see!”

Gentlemen, thanks for your time and answering my questions.

Mark/Vince: “Thank you for showing interest in Kodaline and enjoy the show later on.

Interview: Martien Koolen


Photos provided by the band
Band website:

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