Roll Deep guests at Mood, Edinburgh
- Henry Northmore
- 18 May 2010
Grime stars turned chart toppers
More info please
East London grime collective whose ranks currently include MCs Wiley, Skepta, Riko, Scratchy, Breeze, Jet Li, Manga, Brazen, J2K, Killa P, Little Dee and Flow Dan alongside DJs Danny Weed, Karnage, Maximum and Target.
Phew, that’s quite a line-up! Any other info on their origins?
Founded in 2002 their alumni includes various leaders of the UK grime and urban scene such as Dizzee Rascal and Tinchy Stryder.
That’s a pretty impressive pedigree – what happened next?
Their debut album In at the Deep End (2005) showed a humorous and inventive approach to grime beats and included two top 40 hits, ‘The Avenue’ and ‘Shake a Leg’. This was followed by Rules and Regulations in 2007 and Return of the Big Money Sound in 2008, both of which failed to repeat the impact of their first record. The collective was accused by some in the grime community of looking for a more commercial mainstream sound – which is exactly what they got on ‘Good Times’.
A bit of a departure then?
Very true ‘Good Times’ is as a high energy Euro dance number that has proved itself a massive club hit and stormed to the top of the UK charts. On first appearance it has more in common with Cascada than Lethal Bizzle with Jodie Connor warbling over the top of a thumping beats, sirens and Roll Deep’s slick raps.
Not what anyone expected then?
Many people had written Roll Deep off and then ‘Good Times’ came from out of nowhere, but they never hide their ambitions for chart success, so you can’t really deny Roll Deep their time in the sun even if they have diluted their dark beats and dancehall rhythms, though the rest of their forthcoming album sounds like a return to their origins.
Roll Deep guest at Mood, Edinburgh, Fri 28 May.