It’s not often you hear the words Sheffield and hip hop in the same sentence, but that could all be set to change if Clubs & Spades have their way.
Producers Andy Nicholson and Jamie Shield dish up a musical concoction of hip hop, pop, punk and rock for MC’s Matic Mouth and Shinobi to sink their teeth into; rapping about real life issues in their distinctive northern twang.
While some acts from the UK have been tempted to Americanise their accents, Matic says it was never something him or co-spitter Shinobi contemplated. “Remember when Dizzee Rascal first came out? I wouldn’t say his voice or accent was an orthodox one, but I don’t remember it being questioned, so why should ours?”
Staying true to themselves has no doubt been part of the quartet’s success so far, but their genuine passion for music has also played a part. “We all love music, as fans and as artists, that’s just natural in us all,” says Matic, whose friendship with Shinobi developed in college through a mutual interest in the city’s music scene.
Explaining how the four-piece eventually came to be, Matic says: “I met Andy about seven years ago and formed a friendship due to a love of music. We’d always spoke about doing a hip hop project but only dabbled with it in little bits here and there. Jamie was working with Shinobi at the time of us all coming together, so me and Andy just linked up with them with the specific intention of making new music.”
The music Clubs & Spades makes has been well received, so much so they have shared stages with the likes of Pharaoh Monch, M.O.P and Public Enemy. If that wasn’t enough, the guys continue to be in high demand outside of the group effort.
Jamie and Andy – who combine to make Sticky Blood Music – lend their production skills to others including Arctic Monkeys, MNKN and Terri walker while Shinobi is DJ/ Producer Oris Jay’s live MC.
Their new EP Deal or No Deal is currently doing the rounds, and instead of being a nod to Noel Edmonds, Matic says: “We were more thinking in terms of ‘we are going to do this with a (record label) deal or without a deal’, or even ‘just dealing with life issues in general’.
“The EP is basically a quick snapshot into a time period of our lives. Me and Shinobi funnily – or luckily – enough were going through similar issues. It’s basically a little introduction to Clubs & Spades and what we’re about. We’re constantly working and have so much material and in-house projects that are just waiting for the right time and I know for a fact we all are excited about releasing these over the next few months.”
With a slew of new music due to make its way to the masses in the coming year, Matic takes time to pay his dues to all that have supported Clubs & Spades so far saying: “A big shout out to the City and local regions and all the people who are supporting us, it’s acknowledged and appreciated. All the followers, retweeters, sharers, likers we see you and all you do. PEACE!”