Karyo are a dynamic five-piece from London/Bristol UK. Their sound comprises an upbeat combination of hip-hop, ska, alt-rock and contemporary electronic music. Their influences include The Cat Empire, Jamie T, Bonobo and The Skints.
Karyo have been played on BBC Introducing H&W, BBC 6 Music and Virgin Radio UK, and have been described as
"one of the catchiest festival bands arounD"
- Andrew Marston, BBC Introducing
at a glance...
Although a relatively young band, Karyo have a proven record of live performance with slots at Glastonbury, Shambala, Nozstock and Samphire, as well as countless shows at well-known live music venues across London and the UK.
Karyo are a five-piece alternative hip-hop band comprising long-time friends and musical collaborators Duncan Powell, Luke Fain, Tom Guilding and Henry Wilson, with the recent addition of certified bone-digga and fellow reprobate, Ollie Taylor on horns.
Their sound pays homage to the boys’ much earlier forays into funk and ska. University and onwards saw the sound develop a heavier edge and elements were gradually incorporated from the band members’ separate explorations of electronic music. Karyo were officially formed as an instrumental outfit in 2016. Six months later they were joined by the formidable lyricist, Henry Wilson and bone-man Ollie joined the gang in 2018.
Karyo’s music is characterised by offbeat guitars, swung rhythms, Jamie T-esque rap vocals and raucous brass hooks. Samples, MIDI pads and guitar effects are used live to create exciting electronic textures and an engaging performance spectacle. The mood is upbeat and rhythmic with deep, punchy bass and hip-hop drums- perfect for drinking and dancing.
The group are experienced performers and at their first gig as Karyo they were spotted by one of Glastonbury’s musical curators. Their second gig – less than a week later – was Glastonbury, quickly followed by 'Best New UK Festival' Samphire. After getting noticed by BBC Introducing, Karyo were showcased at Nozstock festival, broadcast on BBC 6 Music and interviewed for BBC radio. More recently they played festival-industry favourite Shambala and are already booked for next year’s Boomtown Fair after being spotted at Shambala by Boomtown’s Head of Music.
As collective spice-fiends and haters of ill-fitting band t-shirts, Karyo’s signature merchandise is Satan’s Gravy, the best fucking hot sauce around.