As I have written before on this blog, the Spotify Discover Weekly and Release Radar playlists have lead to me hearing some great new music that I otherwise would still be unaware of, and another example of this is the music by Kentish duo/band, KAWALA.
The first song that I heard by the band came at a time when I was particularly looking for a light upbeat song that helps to lift your spirits, and the 2018 single by the band Do It Like You Do served the purpose with aplomb.
KAWALA, initially from Kent, originated when it’s two founding members, Jim Higson (vocals) and Daniel MacCarthy (guitar/vocals), met while studying in Leeds College of Music. The duo soon released that the college wasn’t for them and decided to drop out to pursue music on their own terms. The result, KAWALA, the name interestingly enough coming from Higson’s inability to spell the word ‘koala’ due to his dyslexia. Higson and MacCarthy would later recruit Reeve Coulson (bass), Dan Lee (guitar), and Ben Batten (drums) to complete the band line up.
The band started to build up a reputation for excellent live shows and this saw them sell out numerous London venues, including the Camden Assembly.
The aforementioned track, Do It Like You Do, would be the title track from the first official EP by the band, the D.I.L.Y.D. EP in June 2018. D.I.Y.L.Y.D. was a beautiful representation of the sound that the band had been trying to develop, four songs of well crafted pop songs typified with heartfelt lyrics and fun bouncy instrumentation.
The next official EP from the band would come earlier this year (2019) with the release of the Counting The Miles EP, but while preparing this EP the band kept fans happy with the release of a gorgeous cover of the Tom Misch & Zak Abel song Beautiful Escape.
The Counting The Miles EP was yet another solid step forward for the band and marked another level of development. There was a marked sense of growth in the sound on the record and the sophistication of the instrumentation.
It’ll definitely be worth keeping an eye on the rest of the career of the group as they continue to refine and develop their sound.