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Kobo Town

Founded by Trinidadian-Canadian songwriter Drew Gonsalves, Kobo Town is named after the historic neighborhood in Port-of-Spain where calypso was born. Kobo Town takes the intricate wordplay of classic Caribbean music and runs it through a 21st Century filter. In the world of Kobo Town calypso, roots reggae, and acoustic instrumentation meet innovative production techniques, social commentary and indie rock attitude.

 

Kobo Town’s second album Jumbie in the Jukebox will be released in early 2013 by Stonetree and Cumbancha. The new album was produced Ivan Duran, whose masterful work on the now classic Wátina from Andy Palacio & the Garifuna Collective earned a 2007 WOMEX Award and was selected by Amazon.com as “The Greatest World Music Album of All Time.”

 

The result of the collaboration between Kobo Town and Ivan Duran is a striking recording that reflects their mutual commitment to revive the folkloric music of the West Indies by taking it in new creative directions.

Latest News

May 28, 2013 — 
The reviews agree...Kobo Town's Jumbie in the Jukebox is one of the best albums of the year. In the few short weeks since the album has been released Kobo Town has been compared to The Specials, Neil Young, Tom Waits, Harry Belafonte, The Mighty Sparrow, the Rebirth Brass Band and more.

The band is about to embark on their summer tour in Europe and North America, bringing their infectious live show to stages from Paris to Philadelphia.

Today, National Public Radio's All Things Considered reviews the album raving,
"The music of the Toronto band can drift between classic Caribbean pop styles and even verge on hip-hop, but the singer's perspective remains sharply focused, wry and witty. Jumbie in the Jukebox is a seductive invitation to musical time travel — and one that's hard to resist." Listen Here

But don't take our word for it: Read what the critics have to say below, buy the album, see the amazing live show (tour dates below) and let us and your friends know what you think.
   ...read more
April 23, 2013 — 

Release day has finally arrived for Kobo Town's stunning new album Jumbie in the Jukebox. While those of you in Europe may have to wait a little bit longer before the album hits the stores, for the rest of us the album can be found in stores and online today. Here are a few links to order Jumbie in the Jukebox now:

 


The rave reviews have already started to roll in for Jumbie in the Jukebox, so rather then tell you what we think of the album, here's what the critics are saying:

“In the true calypso tradition, Gonsalves is a writer first and foremost, penning erudite rhymes that comment on news, the economic order and the human condition. He and his band, who have been together since 2004, start with a classic calypso sound and add elements of reggae, dancehall and rock to it. This is what a meeting of Mighty Sparrow and Andy Palacio would sound like. These guys are really onto something."
--Global A Go-Go

"The record is packed with songs that are optimistic, energetic and upbeat while maintaining a level of intelligence about them. Kobo Town is rooted in activism and politics but cover it all with sunshine and love. Jumble In The Jukebox is the melding of island influences and modern musical techniques that sound authentic despite being uniquely Canadian. If anything, Jumble In The Jukebox illustrates the influence and prevalence of island music in the world. I thoroughly enjoyed this record; it's lighthearted feel and intelligence made it an absolute joy to jump in line with." 
-- PopStereoReviews

"Ça peut paraître drôlement cliché de dire d’un disque qu’il est l’album idéal pour l’été qui s’en vient. N’empêche qu’il est difficile de ne pas taper du pied, de ne pas penser fun, danse, coolitude et sangria lorsqu’on écoute cette musique-là. Mélange inégal, mais assumé de calypso, roots, de dub et de reggae, ce disque qui résonne de critique sociale comme un reportage dans le tiers-monde est l’œuvre de Drew Gonsalves, un Torontois né à Port-of-Spain. Mais il doit la moitié de son groove à un réalisateur du Bélize, le sorcier blanc Ivan Duran."
-- Voir Montreal

"It is refreshing to have a group like Kobo Town emerge with such a vintage, yet relevant sound. Gonsalves has created a world void of pretense and packed with the most primal emotion; heart. Through the reality of Jumbie In The Jukebox, as any good music should, you can close your eyes and be transported to another time and place and sincerely feel the message.  The trip taken with Kobo Town is very much worth your time and the journey is unforgettable." 
-- Nanobot Rock Reviews

   ...read more
April 04, 2013 — 

Kobo Town's new album Jumbie in The Jukebox is now available for Pre-Order on iTunes: http://itunes.com/kobotown

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