News 22 February 2017
Author: Alex Griffin

Here’s why we think Skepta could be entering his rock music phase

22 February 2017

Skepta is an artist who’s never been afraid to try something new. He’s taken the pop route, he experimented with sounds and genres for Blacklisted and he re-found his roots and essence as a bad boy grime MC in more recent times.

However, in the wake of his Mercury Prize winning album Konnichiwa, I’ve got a feeling he’s about to take another left field step with his music: he’s about to enter his rock music phase.

Last week Skepta made big moves and took home the NME Award for Best Male, complete with his own waved-off rockstar moment. Could this have been the spark to ignite a dramatic momentary shift away into some new music altogether? Although this is all speculative, there are a few telling clues that I’ve broken down.

He was named one of GQ’s best dressed men in 2016, so fashion minded people have been keeping their eyes on Skeppy ever since. For those who have been paying attention, you might have clocked that he’s been swapping the tracksuits and Nike five panels during public appearances for something more rock-leaning. Think more corduroy and patchwork.

More life for my house. My friends are the best.

A post shared by SKEPTA (@skeptagram) on

The company Skepta has been keeping around in the studio seems to have taken a slightly different direction too. We already reported on GRM that Matthew Healy, lead vocalist of band The 1975, and the Tottenham king had been planning on working on music.

“We’re gonna do something in the future” he disclosed to NME, “maybe start a band together – just me and Skepta”. While this was probably a tongue in cheek comment, it might very well be something that’s on his agenda in the near future.

Rock music in all its forms have clearly been on his mind a lot in recent times and it’s safe to assume he’s been taking on some notes and influence from it. Skepta showed some love on Instagram to David Bowie, was seen skanking the f*ck out to the Pet Shop Boys and supported “Big Dreams” on his socials, an alternative song full of guitars and live drums from London artist Bakar.

The energy of grime has often been compared to punk music and the two have been married before; just check out Slaves’ cover of “Shutdown” for evidence of how they can work together. Let’s hope what he’s working on is more like that and less Lil Wayne’s Rebirth.

It might be a reach to suggest that Skepta’s going to totally abandon his sound and position at the top of the game for rock music, but don’t be surprised to hear some elements of it coming soon. After all, our theories haven’t proved to be too far off the mark so far.