KO: Debut EP

KoArtist: Ko
Album: Ko
Release: 10 February 2009
Label: Castle Hill Records

Ko’s self-titled debut EP lives up to the artist’s wish of creating music unparalleled in the music industry. The six full-length songs are as diverse as the ensemble they form. Self-described as urban funk and urban folk, Ko’s status as a folk musician singing about city life is punctuated by his rap and guitar varieties of performance. His past is riddled with drugs and rehabilitation centres. His musical style addresses the emotions and experiences of his years, and his voice betrays the fact that he had to grow up earlier than most.

The first track, “Drunk,” is an upbeat and eclectic song that perfectly showcases the originality desired by Ko. Funky and fresh, this track is a great kick off to the EP and to a drive around city streets. The second track, “Bourbon (Crack Song),” is the beginning of a smooth transition through the rest of the EP. Featuring a catchy chorus, the song begins the story-telling aspect that puts the folk in urban folk. Following similar themes, “Let’s Blaze” may be my favourite song. Despite the hard-hitting topic of drugs, Ko is able to showcase his easy-going attitude about going with the flow. The chorus “But it ain’t gonna happen that way, forget it, no worries, let’s blaze” is a mellow treat that goes down as smooth as the rest of the song.

“Capable” changes the direction of the album. While it continues to remain as smooth as the previous tracks, the change of tune is evident in the lyrics. “You see I never knew, I never had a clue that, that you were capable of love” evokes some deeper emotions in the subtle serenity of the beat. One cannot help but wonder who Ko is singing about. “Miss U” is the least original track, only because “I miss you, more than you’ll ever know” is not an uncommon theme in love songs. In the context of Ko’s EP, it takes on a much deeper meaning. Who does Ko miss? After hearing “Capable” and “Miss U” we hear the emotional part of Ko’s soul, and the reality of those feelings lends to the folk of Ko’s urban funk/folk. 

Wrapping up the EP is “Suntan in Hell,” a fun and upbeat track that ends on a rebellious note. It is an appropriate end to the colourful diversity of Ko’s musical talent.

Check out Ko’s website and make sure to look him up in your city while he’s on tour. He’ll also be playing at Richard’s on Richards in Vancouver on Friday 27 March for JunoFest.

1. Drunk
2. Bourbon (Crack Song)
3. Let’s Blaze
4. Capable
5. Miss U
6. Suntan In Hell

Comments (2)


  1. […] first stop was Richard’s on Richards, where we saw Ko perform for excited fans. As genuine on stage as he is in real life, Ko appeals to West Coast music […]

  2. […] first met Ko when he came to Vancouver for JunoFest, shortly after releasing his debut EP. Amazed by the completely unique music that he was creating, my interview with Ko hammered […]