Exclusive Interview: Deno – “change things around you in order to benefit yourself”

Deno discusses the concept behind his 'Eye 2 Eye' project with RWD and does the infamous Quick Fire Five

Denzil Bell

18 days ago

By Denzil Bell

Today, Brixton’s own Deno has dropped his debut EP, Eye 2 Eye, along with buying his mum a house at the tender age of 17.

The seven track tape features Krept, DigDat and Jay1, with 2 of the singles being previously released and five fresh songs being added into the mix.

So RWD caught up with Deno to find out more about the EP and the man behind the project. Tuck into the tantalising interview below!

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What’s the concept behind the ‘Eye 2 Eye’ project title?

You see the phrase eye to eye, it means when you’re on the same page as someone. But the whole thing about me is, I don’t really see eye to eye with everybody, I see things differently. So that’s the message I was trying to get across with this tape. I just like how it looks aesthetically as well.

I like the stuff you do outside of music also – how did the BoohooMan collaboration come about?

The CEO Samir Kamani just messaged us and said, “we need to get you some BoohooMan gear” and I was like, “yeah bro, I already rock it man, it’s wavey”. From there he wanted to do a shoot with me, so he flew me out to LA and we got it done. We did that and we had a really good connection; then I became cool with the whole team and he was like, “you know what, let’s just do a whole range”. He invited me into the head office and he had everything set up with boards and he just wanted me to throw various ideas at his team: as in whether to go with shirts or hoodies; what fabrics to use; stuff like that and the collaboration came out well in the end.

I also loved your role in Idris Elba’s debut TV show ‘In The Long Run’ – did you prefer acting or singing on the programme?

Both were cool. Majority of it was singing and I was good with that. I liked it because not many people get to showcase their musical talents in TV Shows, so it was great that I got the chance to do it.

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Quick Fire Five 

Remaining the same or change?

Change. But not in a bad way. Change in a way that elevates you as a person. obviously you should remain humble, but change things around you in order to benefit yourself.

Taking advice or doing it yourself?

Taking advice, because you can’t do everything by yourself, you need some help, you need second and third party opinions in the mix as well.

Krept & Konan or Idris Elba (for the collaboration)?

Krept & Konan are my guys. Idris is my guy, so I can’t really pick between them. I like working with both of them. That’s a hard one man, you can’t throw me in the deep end like that!

Balenciaga or Boohooman?

Booohooman; because we’ve got the drippy collection together.

Br3nya or Amelia Monet (for the feature)?

I’m cool with both of them, I know Amelia a bit more, but Br3nya is cool. I don’t know man. I’d take both of them to feature on a song with me. It would be good to get Amelia on to have a singing feature and also good to have a rapping feature from Br3nya.

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Follow the artist’s journey: Deno

Interview by Denzil Bell