Music: The Rolling People

Target from Roll Deep takes time out to chat with Aoife Valentine about the new album, unexpected collaborations and an impending clothing lineSince Roll Deep signed a new record deal with Virgin last November, it’s been all go. They have achieved their first two number ones this year, and have hopes to make it a hat-trick with the new single.New album Winner Stays On is released this month. It caters to everyone from the hardcore grime fans to those who prefer the more commercial sound. It also features numerous collaborations, surprisingly including Alesha Dixon.“We had the song recorded and we wanted to get someone who was interesting to collaborate with, who people maybe wouldn’t have expected us to work with. We’ve been fans of Alesha for a long time. She’s one of the most down-to-earth people we’ve met, so cool and easy to work with. It was a privilege.”

Winner Stays On is quite different from their last album, Street Anthems, a greatest hits album of sorts. The grime scene isn’t exactly renowned for these kinds of compilations; what was the reasoning behind releasing one? “I think we just got to the stage where we had a lot of tracks from the early, early days that hadn’t been released and then there were a lot of tracks that people used to ask for.“We just took an opportunity to release some of those tracks that had never been released and re-release some of the tracks that have helped to make Roll Deep. A lot of the new fans may have missed some of that history, so it’s another chance to catch up.”Roll Deep were nominated for a MOBO for Best UK Act, which must have been rewarding after their busy year? “It’s just nice to know that we’re getting the recognition for the hard work we’ve done this year. To be in a category with the likes of Tinie, JLS, Chipmunk, N-Dubz and whoever else, it’s just a good feeling.”They’ve been performing at events throughout the UK for the last six months, but they’re due to go on tour in February next year. “This is going to be our own headline tour and we’re going all across the UK. We’re going to be performing the new album for the first time on this tour, so it’s going to be a chance for our fans to come out and catch us performing the new songs and of course some of the old classics.”With a tour to keep them busy, is there much else on the horizon for the band? “We’ve got a clothing range called Swagga Muffin coming out. We’ve been wearing the t-shirts ourselves and we’re going to be releasing that in the new year, and [we’re] just working on the music and trying to get the band and ourselves to a bigger level. We’re happy with our progress, but we still feel like we’ve got a lot of work to do so we’re looking forward to getting to all of that next year.”Roll Deep’s new album Winner Stays On will be released on November 8th.