South London’s All The People have been on HIDDEN HERD‘s radar ever since the cathartic late-night soul of sophomore single ‘Don’t Think’ filled our ears. The trio’s recent release ‘The Hills (Promises)’ followed suit – echoing a plethora of artists, from Disclosure to Massive Attack – but latest track ‘Drum’ sees them tread new ground, unleashing a heavier sound made up of frenetic beats, crashing cymbals and hypnotic refrains. With their debut album ‘R Together’ due for release on 100 Billion Wires in May, we caught up with the purveyors of soulful house to talk about their past, present and future.
‘Drum’ is awesome. How did the song come about?
“Thanks a lot. ‘Drum’ is the first track on the album and quite an unhinged track. The instrumental came together really quickly with me (Ash) and my brother Si clicking on the vibe straight away. It stems from our mum telling us when we were younger not to take shit from anyone. I’ve written as a metaphor from my perspective and used an acronym R.E.A. which is like a private mantra. There’s a nice blend of live over electronic drums and lots of craziness from the Arturia MiniBrute.”
How did All The People get together?
“Simon and I have always played in bands together – punk bands in our teens and then became drum’n’bass DJs The Burbs (on Hospital Records). With All The People, we wanted to be more of a band playing live but with an electronic feel, so drawing on our band and club backgrounds. We’re all from South London – we met Curtis who was keen to get involved as vocalist, he’d been singing in gospel choirs etc. in his youth and we loved his voice.”
What inspired your name?
“Our dad showed us this quote: “music is made by all the people and is for all the people” from Indian classical musician Sufi Inayat Khan and it just resonated with us (Ash and Si’s father is Indian) and not to oversimplify, but it feels like now is a time when people really need to come together to combat some of the recent alarming political developments.”
Who are the Top 5 biggest influences on your sound right now?
Any other new bands that you’ve played with and would recommend?
“We’ve played with a lot of really cool new acts in last year or so, but have to say our favourites are Awate, a really talented rapper from London who has actually joined us onstage for a track at a couple of gigs with Dub Pistols which worked really well, Blue Lab Beats – two incredibly talented really young guys killing it in the jazz scene at the moment – and ArA a great singer out of the Roundhouse camp and KIOKO, a really talented young reggae band from Birmingham.”
And finally, what does 2017 hold for All The People?
“It’s all really busy at the moment. We have a couple of new tracks coming out in next two months with a couple of amazing singers – Nadia Nair and one with Kathrin De Boer from Belleruche. They lead into our debut album (released in May) and some gigs and festivals lined up for the summer. We’ve been writing a lot in the last few months too and have an EPs worth of new music to follow the album. We’re also doing some more collabs and writing for a few other people.”