Review: Paddy Kaye – ‘What It Means To Be Roadkill’



Born and raised in Northern New Jersey, Paddy Kaye began writing lyrics to illustrate his perception of the world around him. An artist who views his generation as an affront to delayed gratification, his music is conceptual, driven, and built to provoke, blending timeless sounds with a progressive attitude. Something of a creative, collaborative force, Paddy’s new album was built with the help of Tiny Island, piecing together twelve unique tracks to make a deft, existential release.


Titled ‘What It Means To Be Roadkill’, the album lingers between a diverse range of genres, intertwining folk, blues, and classic, rolling jazz with more progressive, contemporary sounds. A conceptual release that examines what it means to be alive and wary of the absurdity of life, it yearns for a more grounded approach to living.


Opening onto a textured audio snippet, the album sets an immediately engaging tone with ‘Island’ fading into view with a series of wandering strings and poetic vocals. Like the folk-rock legend, Rodriguez, the opening track has a worldly charm and mystical nature, offering an emotional depth that seamlessly transitions into old-world wisdom. Second track ‘Wrote a Coven’ starts with a similar arrangement, but a far more pronounced musical style, pushing aside the wistful ambient textured in favour of upbeat acoustic anthemics.


Lyrically, Paddy treads a confident path, flowing with a poetic, inspired style that ebbs and flows within the melody of each piece. Songs such as ‘Hope & Humility’ and ‘Friends Passed’ linger on the palette with a gentle, almost melancholic sound, showcasing Paddy’s ability to capture authentic human moments with an evocative flair. They’re wonderfully evocative pieces that balance the album’s more raucous, upbeat songs, offering more nuanced and tactile melodies that cut through the rough and ready medley.


Brimming with authenticity, the static-clad introduction to each song helps to emphasise the more human elements of each arrangement, adding to the DIY spirit through a bold series of creative choices. While Paddy’s most poignant moments might be the most rewarding, it’s songs like ‘A Walk To Charlie’s’ and ‘My Dog House in Philly’ that will keep Paddy’s audience holding on for more, bringing contemporary pieces of blues-rock to the fore. Sharp, evolving, and wonderfully anthemic, they’re the energetic and impulsive counterpart to the album’s more cultivated and delicate opening tracks.



It’s an evolving and expansive journey that culminates in the title track, a deft blend of falling rain, lingering vocals, and delicate acoustic guitar. A perfect ending to one of the most genuine, and heartfelt releases of the year, ‘What It Means To Be Roadkill’ is a wonderfully illustrative force that announces Paddy’s talent with absolute clarity.


You can stream ‘What It Means To Be Roadkill’ in full on Spotify above and be sure to follow him on his social media pages for all the latest news and releases.


Score: 8/10


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