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      music Matthew Whitehouse 11 January, 2017

      i-D's music class of 2017: 67

      We meet the writers, thinkers, players, and performers who are creating, crafting, and composing the future of music right here, right now.

      67 2d wears jacket Napapijri. Dimzy wears jacket G-Star. Lique 3 wears jacket Stone Island. Jewellery and hat model's own. monkey wears jacket Stone Island. Hat model's own.

      67 is the last gang in town. The group is comprised of ASAP 67, LD 67, Dimzy 67, Monkey 67, SJ 67, and Liquez 67 (when we meet both ASAP and SJ are otherwise disposed but are still, very much, 67). The town in question is Brixton in south west London, and the group is, to put it simply, everything you want from London's most exciting rap crew — charismatic, compelling, each one naturally funny (more of that below). God, even the music is excellent, as if we weren't content enough just to listen to their interviews for the rest of our lives. Not so much opening the door for drill music in the UK, but removing it from its hinges altogether, the sound of 67 is the sound of confident collectivity. We're hooked and you will be too.

      Names: LD 67, Monkey 67, Liquez 67, Dimzy 67.
      From: South West London, Brixton.
      Occupation: We rap. We work.

      What's the best thing about being from Brixton?
      LD: Knowing that we own the place.
      Dimzy: I can go to my local store and say, 'yo, mate, I ain't got no money, can I get that sugar and pay you back later?' They give it. That's love.
      LD: That's love still.

      Who's your favorite Londoner?
      LD: Person? Nah… Me. I don't have a favorite one. [To Dimzy] Do you?
      Dimzy: I'm trying to be the best one.

      If your life was a short story, what would be the key points that have got you to where you are today?
      LD: See, if we actually broke it down it would be like a film. We'd be here all day but the highlights, I guess is, the shows and that, that we do together. Because everything else is normal, innit? We've been making tracks from young.

      What if it was a film? What sort of film would your music best soundtrack?
      LD: It would be like a mad drama.
      Dimzy: Thriller.
      LD: Bit of thriller, you get me? All action from start to end. Action, drama, and a bit of thriller in it.
      Dimzy: But mad comedy.
      LD: Yeah, and comedy. Oh, shit comedy.
      Dimzy: It would be action, thriller, and bare comedy.
      LD: Comedy on every scene basically, but it's all serious.
      Dimzy: Like, you'd be laughing at one moment then, "Arrgh!". Like that.

      What do you want to say with your music?
      LD: Don't try and be like us, learn from us.
      Monkey: And it's a good sound.
      LD: It's the best sound.
      Monkey: Yeah, drill. We're trying to branch it out.

      In what way?
      LD: From the UK to all over the world really.
      Dimzy: As much as it might be labelled as grime, it's kind of a different style of rapping. We want to come and knock the door open. For all other artists.
      Monkey: We want to open drill in the UK. We're UK drill.
      LD: That's why we need to win them over.
      Dimzy: To open that door.
      LD: Because it's not just us. That is the new sound of London. After grime. Grime's dead. Grime's established. UK drill's the big next thing. And that's what every youth's into now.

      And that's your role in the UK music scene?
      Dimzy: Yeah. Hopefully we can open the door for a lot of youths. A lot of people who rap like that. It's not even just in this country. It's other countries as well. There's a lot of drill music going on and it's not being heard. They can't really fit as much people into the category. That's why it needs its own category.

      What are the main attributes of that category?
      LD: The beats.
      Monkey: It's really the style, the beats.
      LD: The energy. There's energy in grime but there's much more energy in drill. Like, if you come to our shows, the energy in the place…
      Dimzy: You just wanna keep moving. You can't stop.
      Monkey: I think that actually needs to open its own door. 100%. Because there's so many artists that's actually making music like that. But they're just all getting categorized as grime. And because there's so many grime artists, they're going to put the drill people right at the bottom. So I think drill needs its own category. That's what we're trying to open up.

      What song are you best known for?
      LD: "Take It There."

      What are thoughts on the UK post-Brexit?
      LD: What are our thoughts on it? It's stupid, innit. But it's happened, what can I say? Just don't send my people back home.

      How do you feel about the future? Are you optimistic?
      LD: You won't call us political bros. We're not into politics and that. But there's stuff we do look at, you get me? It's the life we're living so you have to watch it as well.

      What's the biggest issues facing you and your friends right now?
      Monkey: When the tour got stopped. That's the biggest, biggest, biggest. Seriously the amount of effort and energy we put in to even get that started. For it to get thrown away for silly reasons, because of the police, wasn't really fair.

      What happened exactly?
      LD: We had a tour, sold-out tour. Couple of festivals. Then the same week the tour was about to start, the police pulled it down. Sent out emails to everyone who'd bought their tickets saying, yeah, it's been postponed and all of that.
      Dimzy: Threatened venues saying that we were high risk.
      LD: Said if we turned up on Manchester stage, the police were gonna run up and grab us.
      Dimzy: Even though there's issues, I think we drive from our issues. Makes us work harder. If things were too easy, we'd be laid back. And these little things, you think, alright cool, I'm gonna go harder now.

      What are your gigs outside of London?
      LD: It's the best feeling.
      Dimzy: It's the best feeling, man.
      LD: London's too local, too small, you see everybody, you get me? You appreciate it more when you leave London. I don't know what Drake was talking about when he said "there's never much love when we go OT." Because when I leave, the love's real, you get me?

      Did you always want to be musicians?
      LD: I tried everything.
      Dimzy: I've tried everything. I've tried plumbing. I've tried to repair stuff.
      LD: We really tried. We tried to make mumsy proud. All of us tried to make our moms proud.
      Dimzy: I even tried to go uni.
      LD: We all tried. Music's the only thing that brought joy, as long as fast money, you get me? Other things brought misery as long as fast money, you get me? Music's just controlling our lives.

      What's the worst job you've ever done?
      LD: I don't even know.
      Monkey: Community service.
      LD: That's not even a job.
      Dimzy: It is a job. It's unpaid work.
      LD: That then. We all done it.

      Who would you most like to work with, from any discipline?
      LD: Future, Alex Ferguson, Arsene Wenger. I be real. All these mad people. You be surprise.
      Dimzy: Zidane. All these mad people, trust me.
      LD: Couple of American people who don't even do nuttin' no more.
      Monkey: Jay Z, 50 Cent.
      Liquez: Christina Milian. [Laughter]
      LD: This guy. He's old school music, I swear down. All these mad people. Business people and managers.
      Liquez: Donald Trump. [Laughter]
      LD: Everyone's looking at him like, what? He's got all the money still but, yeah man, he don't wanna sit with you.
      Dimzy: You don't wanna sit with him, bruv.

      Who, what, and where influences your creativity?
      Dimzy: New Park Road.

      Why?
      Dimzy: Because that's our home. That's where we grew up, that's what made us men.
      LD: New Park Road / TG / BC. That's us. That's where everything comes from.

      Where does the mask come from?
      LD: I dunno. Someone asked me to wear it.

      How do you balance your own individuality with being a unit?
      LD: Because we're brothers everything's just mutual anyway.
      Monkey: It's not new, we haven't just met to do rapping now.
      LD: Like, two of us ain't here but it's not like they're forgotten. The other two are always here, even if they're not here.

      When did you first meet?
      LD: I remember me and him [Dimzy] was close when we was young. Then we didn't see each other for two or three years, innit. Well, we saw each other but not like that. Then one day I just see him with a baguette. A long baguette and he told me he does music in his house, that he made a track in his house and I should follow him and all of that. I went there and he had a little mic and some dead PC and we made a banger. And it got me all the girls at school, so I remember, ey!
      Dimzy: Then we went to some radio things and had the ends listening.
      LD: We had the whole ends, it was mad still.
      Liquez: That's before even Liquez was doing music. Liquez used to be the funniest guy. The funniest young guy you used to know.
      Dimzy: We were just in and off, innit. Like a hobby, innit.
      LD: Then we made mixtapes. OSG mixtape. That's when you could say we came together. No one knew us as 67 but we actually came together right then. That's our little circle.

      What do you all have in common?
      Monkey: Everything.
      LD: Yeah, everything. It just shines in each character different. Like, something will shine in Dimz more than him but we've all got the same characteristics. Smart, innit. 

      Who are you tipping for 2017?
      All: Us.
      Monkey: We're gonna be the damn thing.
      LD: Us and anyone that's on the same mindset as us, I'd say. We're winners. Winners still in everything. Trust me.

      What are personal and professional goals hopes for 2017?
      LD: We think about it, but we've always kept the same blueprint. Just be us. Everyone likes us for us. We haven't tried to be anyone else. We haven't tried to soften our music for anyone. We're just us. And if you like it, you like it. And everyone seems to like it.

      Credits

      Text Matthew Whitehouse

      Photography Hanna Moon
      Styling Max Clark

      Hair Maarit Niemala at Bryant Artists using Moroccan Oil.
      Makeup Athena Paginton at Bryant Artists using Kryolan.
      Set design Mariska Lowri.
      Photography assistance Alessandro Tranchini, Ilenia Arosio.
      Styling assistance Bojana Kozarevic.
      Hair assistance Benjamin David, Mikaela Knopps.
      Makeup assistance Billie McKenzie.

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      Topics:music, music interviews, the big issue, hanna moon, 67, class of 2017

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