Bob Vylan want to show others that “rock music is an OK thing for Black people to do”

Bob Vylan spoke to NME at the 2022 MOBO Awards about their hope to shine a light on alternative music made by people of colour. Watch our full video interview above.

Talking about their nomination for for the MOBO’s first Best Alternative Act category, frontman Bobby Vylan said they were enthused by what it represented for others.

“For us, it’s not necessarily important to be recognised by an awards ceremony, but what I do think that it does open the door for other people who are creating quote-unquote ‘alternative music’ or ‘rock music’ to express themselves and see it as a viable thing,” he told NME. “It’s an OK thing for Black people to do.”

The punk duo Bob Vylan are also heavily influenced by grime, and are proud by their ability to straddle the two subcultures.

“It’s great to be acknowledged on both sides,” said Vylan. “That’s what we do as a band. We make rock music, we make punk music, but the stuff we talk about is stuff we grew up [with]. The same way all these drill rappers do, every single one of them. The exact same way.

“Our content is still very much the same, it’s just the production behind it is slightly different, and the way we try and tackle certain subjects and issues. We’re glad to represent both sides of it though”.

Bob Vylan at the 2022 MOBO Awards. {Credit: Joseph Okpako/Wireimage)

Bob Vylan went on to win the inaugural Best Alternative Act Award at the 2022 MOBO Awards, beating the likes of Skunk Anansie, Nova Twins, Big Joanie, Loathe, and Kid Bookie.

The band recently completed their UK autumn tour in support of their acclaimed second album, ‘Bob Vylan Present The Price of Life’. This weekend saw the duo joined by Slaves at their London headline show.

This year’s MOBO Awards were held in the OVO Wembley Arena and marked the 25th anniversary of the integral award ceremony. Acts including Beenie Man, Eliza Rose, and Tion Wayne all performed on the night, while Craig David and Neil Rodgers won the prestigious career achievement awards. David won the Outstanding Contribution Award, and Rodgers won the Lifetime Achievement Award.

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