KAWALA – ‘American Adrenaline’ single review: They’re back, and it was worth the wait


For nearly two years, KAWALA fans have been patiently waiting on new music. The North London outfit released their debut album, ‘Better With You’, in 2022, and since then things have been quiet. Now, they’re back, and it was well worth the wait.

The guys tell us ‘American Adrenaline’ is about the struggle of chasing the ‘American Dream’, which after a while feels far away and fake (“Tell me it’s a real thing”). More generally, it’s about desire, and wanting something that is difficult or near impossible to get.

As the title suggests, it’s like an exciting adrenaline rush. It’s short but sweet, with the only negative being that it’s over in less than three minutes. For that reason, it’s one to let yourself go with. “Throw me the keys” – you’re in control now.

Not to do a disservice to the band as a whole, but I think KAWALA’s signature sound owes a great deal to the magical soft vocals of their frontman, Jim Higson. I’m convinced there’s no other sound quite like theirs right now.

Whilst this ushers in a self-proclaimed new era for KAWALA, many of their songs have a summery, relaxed feel. This is in keeping with that, whilst still setting the stage for something new. Colourful, groovy, and optimistic – it’s the perfect way to kick off the new era.

I got a preview of this song, as well as their other upcoming music, at their Rehearsal Shows in November 2023. They were simply vintage KAWALA, and the new era of KAWALA can’t come soon enough.

KAWALA will be supporting Bombay Bicycle Club at O2 Guildhall in Southampton on Saturday 17th February. They’ve also teased new shows for 2024.

‘American Adrenaline’ is out now via EMI Records. You can watch the lyric video below.


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