Premiere + Q&A: Kodalith – “Polaroid”

Kodalith is a brand new upbeat dream-pop/punk project based out of sunny Southern California, and their debut single “Polaroid” premieres today. The recently formed project is the melding of creative minds; Jara (JARA) and Sam Roland (of Petite Lumiere, Miles Bandit), who are currently based out of San Diego and Los Angeles, respectively.

“Polaroid” is the first song that the duo wrote together, staying on theme with the the project’s name Kodalith, which was inspired by a type of high-contrast photo printing paper. The duo explains that this type of paper gives photos a high contrast with really dense blacks, which results in a simple, yet bold product.

After coming together to write their first set of songs, Jara and Sam combined their differing musical perspectives to draw creative inspiration from their common ground, Punk:

…we both grew up on punk music. Punk as a genre is more of a template to share a the story, a point or a feeling, Less about the musicality of things. So thatʼs where Sam and I intuitively start; the story, point or the feeling.

– Jara, Kodalith

While there’s upfront playful pop-y synths, “Polaroid” also showcases an alluring balance between that and forwardly vulnerable lyrics. Jara and Sam revealed that the song is about the insecurities felt in an unraveling, wavering relationship – longing for a simpler time and wishing to be everything your partner needs.

Read the full Q&A with Kodalith below:

How did Kodalith come about?

Sam: Jara and I met playing a show together in the SD scene and then were bullshit internet friends for 7 months and bonded over similar fashion interests. He came up to LA and needed a place to crash so he stayed on my couch and that’s when we started making music haha.

Are you a part of any other projects outside of Kodalith?

Jara: I have my alternative dream pop project going by my first name JARA.

Sam has a solo electronic pop project called Petite Lumiere and plays bass in Miles Bandit.

The first single “Polaroid” comes out today! What’s the song about / what inspired it?

Jara: To me the song sort of paints a picture of an unsteady rocky relationship going through a change of seasons in life, letting each other down wishing things were simpler.

Sam: To me the song is about feeling guilty about not being exactly who your partner wants you to be and wishing you could be everything they need.

As a group, what’s the creative process like?

Jara: Sam & I have very different tastes in music. Sam has basement indie obscure tastes. As where I have lots of Pop polished tastes in not only music but also production. But the one similar vein, is we both grew up on punk music. Punk as a genre is more of a template to share a the story, a point or a feeling, less about the musicality of things. So thatʼs where Sam and I intuitively start; the story, point or the feeling.

Funny enough coming into this project I was excited to expand my writing skills by trying less poppy, more unpolished “experimental” melodies and structures, where Sam was coming into it the exact opposite; trying to be more structural and pop. In the end we meet in the middle and hopefully balance each other out.

Do you have an album in the works?

Sam: We have an EP that will probably be out early 2020. Not much to share right now but stay tuned!

Where does the ‘Kodalith’ name come from?

Sam: Initially we wanted to name the band after a vintage camera. While researching names, we came across the word ‘Kodalith’ which is a type of photo printing paper that gives photos a high contrast print with really dense blacks. We googled some photos and these pictures are sort of obscure and lofi but also very simple and bold. That really stood out to us.

Tell us about your upcoming shows!

We have our debut show at Soda Bar in San Diego opening for Eyedress December 10th. We are so stoked to bring this music to life.
(Tickets available here)

Listen to Kodalith’s new single “Polaroid” below:

Stay up to date with Kodalith via Instagram and Soundcloud.


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