"I'm In A Position To Just Do What I Love" D Double E Interviewed
D Double E is a UK music legend, whichever way you want to look at it. A key figure in the grime scene before there even was a grime scene, he’s almost definitely your favourite MC’s favourite MC, and for good reason. There aren’t many other people who can cause a wheel-up at a rave with ad libs alone, and his tracks and features are routinely some of the best in the game.
The one thing missing from his arsenal for a long time was a full-length solo album, but 2018’s ‘Jackuum!’ rectified that, attracting critical acclaim and boosting D Double’s legend even further. Now 2020 has rolled round and he’s back with a second helping.
New album 'Double Or Nothing' is a different beast entirely that sees him flexing his muscles outside of grime, a move that will come as no surprise to long-time fans, but might take people who only know him for the one genre by surprise.
We hopped on the phone with him just as the second nationwide lockdown kicked in to ask about the album, the features, and why he categorically refuses to let people box him in.
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Hey, how’s it going – are you coping with lockdown?
It’s fine, I’m missing the raves though – had a tour lined up but these things just happen sometimes. I’ve got a couple of other tricks up my sleeve to promote the new album, but it’s basically all just street work, thinking hats on. We’ve got more than enough time when we’re locked down to be thinking of plans and making things work.
Speaking of the album, why did you call it ‘Double Or Nothing’?
It’s ‘Double Or Nothing’ because I feel like that’s what everyone should aim for. We need to stop cutting ourselves short and just aim to be the best thing we can. And separately from that, it’s what time it is for me personally – three years ago I felt I really needed to do me, go solo and get ‘Jackuum!’ out, so this is another thing to keep me in lane.
It’s all double or nothing now man, for me and for anyone else that wants to make something.
This is your second album now after a long time in the game, do you think this is the format that works for you now?
Honestly, it’s the only format now, the only one for a successful artist. If you don’t wanna be successful you can just go in the rave and spit or become a clash MC and just do battle rapping, but if you wanna be successful? Anyone that we could mention sitting here, albums is what they do, so to live another way just sounds silly to me.
Right now I’m doing what I’m supposed to do and being consistent with these projects, because I’m trying to live that life, you know?
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Was there anything you wanted to do differently on this album?
Naaah man. Everything I do is because I wanna do it – do people just want me to eat chicken and chips every single day of the week for fucking breakfast, lunch and dinner? ‘Jackuum!’ is there and ‘D.O.N’ is here. On my next one I’ll be switching it again, because I love a lot of stuff and I want to show you that I might love chicken and chips, but I’m eating different during the week. I’ve got so many styles that I want to show to people, but I don’t wanna be mixing them about, you understand? Next one I could have singers all over it, but I’m still D Double, I’m still moving. Just moving in a new shape.
I’m gonna do ‘Jackuum! 2’, but I want to have these different platforms first, then go back and do more of it. I can’t just have ‘Jackuum! 1-7’ because people are gonna start thinking it’s a mixtape, and I don’t want people to be thinking of mixtapes when they look at my albums. I’m gonna get all the covers looking good too, you know? I’m there like ‘Rah, if I’m in a suit sitting down on this cover, I’ll be in a suit standing up in this one’ and then it can all fit together, but not sound the same.
I love a lot of different foods man, none of it is cheesy and all of it is hard, but everyone’s trying to back me up into this one chicken shop instead of letting me give my real all.
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