With their self-professed ‘kinksabilly’ sound and obvious enthusiasm for their craft, it’s hard to dislike General Jumbo. Despite kicking around Cardiff for almost 18 months this four track effort is the first real studio offering from the group of lads who first met whilst working in the Chapter Arts Centre kitchen and, to be fair, it ain’t half bad. There’s a real classic skiffle feel throughout – no doubt heavily influenced by the inclusion of a rhythmical double-bass as opposed to a regular electric – in addition to glaring nods to other traditional country-tinged roots music, an amalgamation that, pleasingly, they seem to carry off. The tracks are well written and performed but it’s the decidedly questionable production levels that really let them down; it seems as though in their quest to reproduce their live sound as accurately as possible the expected glossier finish studio work affords you has been overlooked which doesn’t particularly add to what is otherwise a very solid first release. That aside, this serves as a quality introduction to General Jumbo and their infectious skiffle-stylings and should undoubtedly entice it’s listener to investigate their live shows in 2013.
Verdict: 3 out of 5