This is a short but sweet EP of beautiful American influenced folk music. Kicking Bird are from Dublin and their self-titled debut EP displays their considerable instrumental and singing skills.

It’s great to see such genre-hopping on a relatively short piece of work. There are all sorts of quiet and stomping music within, but at its heart it is all about the melody of the songs and some lovely harmonies. Influences abound – people like Emmylou Harris, Wilco, Iris de Ment and Neil Young – but what’s equally evident is how well Kicking Bird are forging their own identity.

Across the four songs on the EP the band showcase their mastery of this type of music. For example, track two Yodel shows they are very conversant in the history of old country music, providing a nice modern twist on the, ahem, yodel-genre. Jimmie Rodgers would approve!

They also know how to construct their songs, and kick off the EP with their strongest tune (and single) Nowhere to Die. Boasting two lead singers, this opening track is a slow builder of a tune and mainly features Shannen Byrne on vocals. The other singer Michael Smith features more strongly on the EP’s muscular closing song Edge Of The Earth. They also harmonise very well and are supported ably by their two colleagues throughout, as all four are excellent instrumentalists.

Despite our love of roots music in this country, in the past our home-grown attempts at Americana sometimes just did not ring true. This is definitely not the case with Kicking Bird, as you will see if you pick up this EP, with its four confident songs displaying a strong statement of intent.

Watch out for the band’s Facebook page updates regarding further music launches and live dates. Here at GoldenPlec we were proud to recently exclusively stream the band’s debut single.