Kodaline: ‘X Factor isn’t the right way to go for singers’

The Irish band spoke to NME at a recent XFM Presents with Ford SYNC studio session

Kodaline have spoken out about their views on TV talent shows like The X Factor and their impact on emerging British talent.

Originally known as 21 Demands, the Irish quartet made it to the final of RTE-broadcast programme You’re A Star in 2007. Despite not winning the overall competition, the band went on to become the first act to achieve a Number One in Irish chart history on downloads alone.

Speaking to NME ahead of their XFM Presents with Ford SYNC studio session, singer Steve Garrigan reasoned: “The X Factor is a TV show. If you really want to be a singer and you want to write songs, you have to go out and tour and gig everywhere. Play to as many people as possible even if they don’t want to listen. If you’ve got something to say then X Factor isn’t the right way to go.”

“After we were on [You’re A Star], we were offered a record deal,” explained guitarist Mark Prendergast. “They wanted us to release an album straight away so we turned them down. Some people do alright from those shows but there’s a lot of casualties.”

“I completely despise people who go on The X Factor just looking for fame,” continued Garrigan. “But then you get genuinely good singers who’ve probably been gigging for years and this is their last chance. It’s got good and bad points.”

It was recently announced the Arts Council have set up a fund to help support artists trying to break it into the music industry. The news follows comments from the organisation’s chief executive Alan Davey, who cited ‘X Factor culture’ as to blame for the music industry’s “short-termism”.

“They want talent to be delivered to them ready-made,” he told the BBC. “They’re not prepared to take a risk over a long period of time investing in talent. So they’ll concentrate on giving the public what they think the public want, rather than exploring and getting the public to find things that they didn’t know they want.”

Kodaline released their debut album ‘In A Perfect World’ this week (June 17) and will appear at a number of UK festivals this summer, including a set on the John Peel stage at Glastonbury on June 28.

For more artist sessions head to http://promo.xfm.co.uk/livesessions/.