JOE DRISCOLL & SEKOU KOUYATE
“There's a refreshingly casual flow–rapping, singing, riffing and grooving, and that's their charm. After decades of high-concept world music collaborations, these two musicians largely dispense with fussiness and grandiosity. To be sure, there is deep history linking West African and American music, but Driscoll and Kouyate take that as a given and get right to kicking out the jams, just two homies from the virtual global hood.”
– National Public Radio
Joe Driscoll has gained fame over the last decade for his unique blend of folk, funk and hip-hop. Sekou Kouyate, from Guinea, is one of the most innovative and virtuosic players of the kora, the 21-stringed West African harp. When these two seemingly disparate artistic forces are combined, an incendiary musical reaction takes place. They first first met in 2010 at a festival in Marseille, France and their explosive combustibility was evident in their jaw-dropping live shows and energizing debut album, Faya, which was released by Cumbancha Discovery in 2014. Performing as a quartet, backed by drums and bass, Joe & Sekou have performed at hundreds of festivals and venues across Europe, North America and Africa, earning ecstatic reviews whenever they set foot on stage.
Joe Driscoll & Sekou Kouyate’s electrifying second album, Monistic Theory, derives its title from the concept that reality is a unified whole and that all existing things can be ascribed to or described by a single concept or system. It's an apt philosophy for this boundary-crossing collaboration, one that brings together two musicians from vastly different backgrounds in search of the commonalities that are uniquely revealed by artistic expression.
The UK daily The Guardian recently raved, "African, funk and rap influences combine in an energetic performance. They have developed into a tight, attacking unit, in which the virtuoso kora work is integrated into sturdy playing from the band. Exuberant virtuosic fusion.” Songlines Magazine calls the group, "A boundary-trampling high-octane hybrid in which the lightning fast electrified licks of Kouyate are matched by the explosive energy of Driscoll's rapid fire rhyming.”