So every once in a while a band will show up out of nowhere and surprise you. Icelandic band Kaleo, who’s name means “the sound” in Hawaiian, is just such a band. A blend of contemporary rock, blues and a folk vibe gives an idea of what Kaleo strives for. It is a difficult thing to define them without actually hearing them. Their international debut album, A/B, shows so much variation between tracks.
The opening song, “No Good”, is an absolute trendsetter. It is raucous, unruly and just plain fun. The bluesy, stinging riffs of guitarist Rubin Pollock, the backbone bass lines bassist Danny Jones and the high-paced percussion of drummer David Antonsson Crivello set the stage for the gravelly, powerhouse vocals of lead singer, JJ Julius Son.
Whereas,”Way Down We Go” is a delicate, heartfelt track. It is laid-back, but never really lets up. Every track is special and could easily be a radio hit. If forced to give a comparable artist, the first to come to mind would be Hozier, but much heavier. Kaleo is something special that is finally finding their way to the US shores.
Kaleo is definitely on their way to stardom in the US and internationally. Expect them to be headlining some monster shows here in the near future. Icelandic music can now claim more than soft folk music (Of Monsters and Men), ethereal background sounds (Sigur Rós) and the absolute bizarre (Björk).
A/B by Kaleo is now available on iTunes and other major retailers.
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