With two UK number one singles last year, London grime collective Roll Deep are at the top of their game and determined to make 2011 even more successful.
The group perform at the 02 Academy on Friday 18th February as part of their 16-date ‘Winner Stays On’ UK tour.
Group member Brazen, real name Ardom Ali, believes that this is a great time for homegrown talent to make an impact.
”There’s so much talent here in the UK. I joined Roll Deep at 16 and over those years grime music has come a long way, bringing together different parts of the country.”
”It’s become more positive, it was a platform set by (fellow group member) Wiley and now UK music as a whole is massive.”
In 2010, Roll Deep’s singles ‘Good Times’ and ‘Green Light’ topped the UK singles chart bringing huge mainstream attention, but in terms of musical style Brazen maintains that they will always remain true to their roots.
”We’re a grime collective, we always will be. We’re versatile though, we can make any music we want and we’ve got the right music for 2011 covered.”
Roll Deep currently have 11 members, including Brazen’s brother Breeze (Muhammad Ibrahim Ali) and former group members include solo chart-topping artists Tinchy Stryder and Dizzee Rascal.
As well as a 2009 greatest hits album, the group have released four studio albums to date with a fifth already in the offing.
Brazen meanwhile explained that reports of a collaboration with girl group The Saturdays were wide of the mark.
”The Saturdays rumour was a myth. We had a night out with them but that was all, there’s so many of us in the group that we don’t need to collaborate at the moment.”
At 23, Brazen has already begun work on a solo project but has no plans to permanently leave Roll Deep.
”I’ve got a solo album ready, I think we all have to look at doing some solo stuff on the side. I’ll never leave though, I’ve got a Roll Deep tattoo on my back so I’m stuck with them!”
With the development of UK talent high on Brazen’s agenda he has highlighted the up-and-coming MCs to look out for.
”Maxla and Opium are two big talents to keep an eye on. I don’t know any Sheffield MCs but look out for this kid Brazen, he’s really good!”
In the meantime, preparations for the tour have been ‘quite manic’ and the Sheffield date will be the eight show in nine days for the group.
Brazen believes that the audience will not be disappointed when Roll Deep visit the Steel City this month.
”Everyone there will get a sense of value for money. We’ve got what it takes to be the best and we want to achieve greatness in everyone’s eyes.”
”We just want to entertain and make everyone happy. It will be a good night out and I know the fans will like what we’ve got for them.”
Roll Deep perform at the 02 Academy on Friday 18th February from 7pm.