Krept and Konan: drill music is being scapegoated

By Craig Simpson, Press Association

Krept and Konan have claimed drill music is being scapegoated and banning it will make youth violence “10 times worse”.

The duo have said suppressing drill will condemn young people to the brutal life they could escape through the controversial music.

Drill, famed for its raw sound and violent lyrics, has been linked to knife crime in London and there have been calls to curb live shows and remove drill music inciting violence from social media platforms.

South London artists Krept and Konan have spoken out against censorship, and said drill is being used as a scapegoat by the authorities, who refuse to invest in the real problem of scarce youth services.

Konan has said music saved him from ‘the roads’ (Matt Crossick/PA)

The pair, who were involved in gang activity when they were younger, have said music took them off the streets, and drill can provide similar opportunities for other young people.

Krept and Konan – the stage names of Casyo Johnson and Karl Wilson – have said drill can help lift people out of lives of crime and violence on the streets.

Speaking at a committee room at the House of Commons, Krept said: “Music is a way of making money and getting out of your situation.

“We know just being in the hood you might just get up to something you don’t want to.

“You stopping that – you are not helping, you are making the situation 10 times worse.

“There was violence before drill.  If we stop drill right now is it going to end?

“Drill is being used as a scapegoat for them not investing in our communities.

Krept has said drill is being used as a scapegoat for other failures (Ian West/PA)

“We need support.  It’s not just a ban-drill thing, it’s way deeper than that.”

Konan has said that music saved his life and took him off “the roads” of London.

The artist has said that he and his collaborator had opportunities to become involved in music, and believes that choice could be taken away from people with ambitions in drill music.

He said: “I’ve seen my mum get shot, I’ve seen my stepdad die. I’ve been in gangs.

“Once you step out of it you know that this is not what you are meant to be doing. We want to give people a platform to escape.”

They have called for more funding for youth services and greater opportunities for young people to become involved in music.

Shadow home secretary Diane Abbott introduced the men.

She said: “Drill music can be violent and I have to be clear, when they do directly incite violence then the police should investigate.

“However, we do know that the root cause of violence on our streets is much wider than music.”