From Big Sean to Agnel Obel and Lady Gaga...

This week the single reviews chair is occupied by none other than Irish group Kodaline.

One of the year's true breakthrough stories, debut album 'In A Perfect World' rocketed into the Top Ten on its release this summer. Seeming to play larger and larger venues with each passing week, Kodaline are managing to charm fans across Europe and beyond.

October finds the band heading out to the United States for their most comprehensive North American jaunt yet, while new EP 'Brand New Day' hits record racks across the country this week. Popular lads...

Taking time out to survey the latest high profile releases, you can peruse the thoughts of Kodaline below.

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Pearl Jam - Mind Your Manners
The start of this song has real System Of A Down vibes: really cool, interesting riff, then after about 15 seconds the vibe changes and it goes more into an early Green Day three chord punk vibe. Kinda wish it didn't switch from the System Of A Down vibe. Eddie Vedder's iconic vocal carries this song, the instrumentation tends to get a little bit lazy for my liking, but overall it's a cool feel-good track which is guaranteed to kick off live. It builds nicely towards a cool backing vocal heavy outro. It's nice when bands of this stature can churn out songs that are under three minutes.

Drenge - Face Like A Skull
This song in particular has got some serious balls on it, with only two of them in the band, two brothers, they create a huge wall of sound. You're immediately punched in the face with crashing drums and a massive guitar riff. We actually played with these guys a few times and I think I prefer them live, but I think that's the case with any good live band. The video is very odd but makes for a cool visual for the song. Lead singer Eoin Loveless (very cool name) delivers a great raspy vocal throughout. If I was to nitpick this song though I'd say the bridge guitar section lags a bit, but that's just me. This song is non-stop riff, we likey.

Janelle Monae - Apocalyptic Dance
A fitting name for a more than apocalyptic song.

Big Sean – Beware
The third single off Big Sean’s second album titled 'Hall Of Fame' due for release later this month is 'Beware' featuring Lil Wayne and Jhenè Aiko! I’m gonna cut to the chase, I like this song from the pulsing riff in the verses to the guest vocals. Lil Wayne always adds a touch of cool for me to any song he makes an appearance on and this is no exception. For the third single off this album it doesn't make a huge statement - inoffensive, like a chilled-out Frank Ocean vibe.

Chloe Howl - No Strings
This track grabs you from the first Talking Heads inspired hit and doesn't let you go until the end. Chloe's voice implores you to take notice and listen, while hints of Calvin Harris synths and a cracking bassline give this song energy for days. The production never lets your ears get bored with melodic flourishes and paddy whispers that are just familiar enough to give it that instantly recognisable something that so many strive for and few achieve.

Lady Gaga - Applause
I don't know what she's trying to do here but the verses in this song really get under my skin - of course there are plenty of hooks to follow but the whole thing just doesn't make any sense as a whole. The structure follows that of most standard EDM tracks with the repetitive lead synth line and layered percussion to add some interest to this pretty mediocre offering from the 'queen of pop'. I can't see many people applauding but what do I know!

Daft Punk - Lose Yourself To Dance
'Lose Yourself To Dance' is an effortlessly cool chilled-out floorfiller, that grooves like a scene from a seventies roller disco.The dynamic flare of the robotic duo is united again with the distinctive sound of Nile Rogers and the slick soulful vocals of Pharrel Williams to deliver a modern day anthem with a timeless feel.

Agnes Obel – The Curse
The first single from the new offering of Danish singer/songwriter Agnes Obel is, well, if you have never heard of her like I haven’t, you will be surprised to find out that everything you hear is recorded by this one person in a small studio in Berlin. Not to say that it sounds like this in any way but more of an added bonus to the listener! One person's clear and undiluted version of what they are trying to get across. I quite like this song even though halfway through it loses my interest, but worth a listen!

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Kodaline's new EP 'Brand New Day' is out now - the band have also confirmed the following UK & Ireland shows:

8 Birmingham Institute
9 Oxford O2 Academy
10 London O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire
12 London The Forum
13 Leeds Stylus
16 Gateshead Sage 2
17 Manchester The Ritz
18 Bristol O2 Academy
19 Belfast Limelight
20 Dublin Olympia Theatre
21 Dublin Olympia Theatre
22 Dublin Olympia Theatre

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