Interview: Mikill Pane

Elaine Zhao 23 November 2012

Do you have any particular musical influences and who would they be?

I don’t have any particular influences but I do pay homage to certain artists in my music, but they won’t necessarily influence the actual subject of the song. Maybe subconsciously I might sound like people ‘cause people always like to compare. There are a lot of artists I admire though – I’m actually really into indie music though, a massive, massive fan of Keane and the Arctic Monkeys.

You’ve collaborated with many famous artists on your free EP You Guest It – who would you say was your favourite artist to work with?

I’ve got love and respect for all of them but the best experience was working with Example. We had a lot of fun and jokes during the session and he was moving into a new home and approving tracks for his new album, so he literally had a two hour window to record the song. It was all really quick, but now it’s a really big song on the EP.

Supporting Rizzle Kicks on Tuesday, you must be having to get more and more used to being in the spotlight – are you ever worried that fame might change you?

I don’t mind if it changes me, as long as it doesn’t change me for the worse. I think there’s a taboo around fame changing someone, but you have to remember that fame will change anyone, if it doesn’t – you’re a weirdo. If you think that you can live the same life and have the same mindset after becoming famous, you’re an idiot because your life will change and you’ve just got to adapt. So as long as all the changes are positive and sensible then yeah, I’m cool with that.

Is there anything in particular you want to stay important to you?

I think the important things will always be important for me – they’re significant because they’re beneficial to me and I’m beneficial to them, like friends, family, etc. I’m not famous yet – I mean I’m well-known, but I’m not properly famous yet, but I would always like to be able to cycle around, have time for my friends, that kind of thing.

Especially as you’re from London, what do you think of the Cambridge music scene?

I actually don’t know anything about Cambridge music scene – but Cambridge University, I’d be damned if there wasn’t a huge band from here. I’ll have to google that.

Other than music, do you have any other passions or hobbies?

Cycling is a big one – and sneaker collecting is a passion. I was sneaker collecting before I was rapping.

What can listeners expect for the sound of your official debut album Blame Miss Barclay to be released in 2013?

It’s conceptual so there are a lot of characters that pop up in it during the duration of the album, a lot of story telling but rarely autobiographical. I’d say there’s a lot of imagination involved in the album.

Lastly, tell us something that your listeners wouldn’t normally expect about you. E.g. do you secretly find Call Me Maybe a guilty pleasure, or don’t actually mind One Direction etc? (This is probably unlikely though…)

(Laughs) Well actually this is my second time supporting Rizzle Kicks and on the first tour, my DJ Will Power, he’s like a strapping young lad so every time I told the girls to make noise for him they’d make more noise than they did for me, which was fucking annoying! Well actually not really, ‘cause the girls were about 10…so I was really not bothered… (Secretly I was). But we used to play Call Me Maybe as a little skit in our set, and I’m not going to lie to you, I think it’s a well-written song. (laughs) Otherwise, I’m exceptionally normal.

Elaine Zhao