Debuting the introspective single Reservations on Wednesday, CLBRKS and Conrad Mundy's 'Out For Lunch' has been a long time coming. They have collaborated frequently on individual projects, sharing erratic rhymes over ghastly hiphop beats, but this is their first EP together. Whilst the boom baps still exist on OFL, there are moments that exonerate the artist's willingness to explore other sub-genres within modern rap.
Mundy's The Ghost Of Chef Maras is a visceral, anarchy inducing number, whilst our favourite (Ceviche), sees both artists chopping on a hi-hat heavy trap beat. Lyrically, CL and Conrad are two of our favourite rappers going - the sheer variety of themes every song on OFL covers is a testament to their unorthodox outlook on our present times.
We had a chat with them both about the pandemic, garms and where to get a decent lunch. Have a read below.
How are you both getting on in isolation? Any recommendations to help people power through the pandemic?
CM: Not too bad really, i'm still working my 9-5 so just been adapting to that and making more music. I’d say now is a good time to pick up a new hobby, i recently started dj’ing so that something I've been concentrating on a bit more during these times
CLBRKS: I’ve been alright, my cannabis intake has gone up a bit but I’m complimenting that shit with a healthy diet: ginger shots, salads, the occasional steak and eggs. To keep me busy I’ve just been doing the same old, I’m comfortable working from home and record most of my music here.
Talk to your friends and family on the phone more, I’m sending letters back and forth to my Mum and Dad, just communicate more, we’re all feeling a bit lonely at the mo’ I suppose.
As long time collaborators, how did you two first get to know each other?
CM: I found out about CL through loudhouse so shout out to them guys. Then I think we spoke on insta and met up like the next day with kiina and made some music and chilled. I'd say our friendship was something that was always bound to happen having the same name was something we joked about a lot bit of a weird coincidence really considering we have very similar interests.
CLBRKS: We first heard of each other through Loudhouse, then just linked on insta. We both have the same first names, and click very well, I’d say we’re really good friends by now, if not best mates practically. Originally we spent a lot of time at Kiina’s house working from there, making odd songs and developing a relationship. After some time we began making OFL together and would always record together in the same room, I think that’s reflected in how comfortable our raps seem to rub off on one another.
What bar, on this project, did you not write that you wish you had?
CM: “Im probably high so if you try to SMS me you’ll get no reply” one of my many favourite one liners from the project
CLBRKS: “Please don’t give us an excuse to shoot you” is a brilliant opening line, hats off to Conrad.
What informs your lyrics? Crash bandicoot, scruffy suits and plenty of zoots are referenced on Out For Lunch, but how do you go about writing your rhymes?
CM: Sometimes I’ll have topics i want to reference or write about and i'll just keep a note of them so when it comes to writing I can make it funny or interesting, I think CL does the same, we both take inspiration from all kinds of mediums.
CLBRKS: We both spend a lot of time in front of screens, just consuming music, films, cartoons and shit. So I guess that's where those pop culture references come from. We like to use a lot of imagery in our lyrics, I have a more arrogant tone and that works well with Mundy who’s lyrics often hold a deeper meaning.
If we’re working together we just bounce off one another and keep each other inspired, we also help each other out and critique one another. It never really feels like a chore.
This question is a bit bait, but what were you influenced by going into this EP?
CLBRKS: The phrase “Born to lose, out to lunch” coined by Lemmy Kilmister from Motorhead was a big inspiration at least in the direction of the title for the tape. I think because we established a title and theme early on, it was easy to cater the lyrics to that. There is a lot of inspiration from the 70’s punk movement, fashion, crime films, cuisine, jazz music, Three6Mafia, video games, life experiences and art.
Our favourite track is the closer, 5 ceviche. How did that one come about? What is your favourite ingredient in a Ceviche?
CM: Cheers! I think that was one of the last songs we finished for the EP, like CL said i think we both had some random bars then we just altered them to fit the track a bit more.
As far as Ceviche i’ve never even tried the dish myself which wont' come as a shock to those who know me. I’d be down for trying some tho for sure I'm a fan of seafood.
CLBRKS: Thank you. I think we had those bars laying around on our iPhones y’know, I personally find that song the most difficult for me to enjoy, I suppose its because I don’t really listen to many trap beats, or maybe it’s because we made them a while ago now… I think you’ve made me feel a bit better about it if I’m honest haha.
Like most ceviches I tend to go with a sea bass, if I'm balling out I’ll use tuna, sometimes a salmon, but my first choice is always a sea bass. My Leche del Tigre needs mad lime and chilli, I honestly believe that that dish has medicinal, spiritual, physical, sexual, lyrical powers. Sometimes I throw some diced mango in there just to bastardise it, but ain't no shame in my game baby!
Garms are a big reference in your lyricism: “All in Ralph Lauren like I’m off to the races”, “Arc’teryx jacket man I’m moving like I’m climbing” etc, but if you could have one item of clothing that you haven’t got already, what would it be?
CM: Some black prada runners, I remember seeing all of the older kids rock them at secondary school and get away with it somehow I've always wanted to get myself a pair since then
CLBRKS: I would really like to invest in a nice pair of Suicokes. I have also wanted a simple grey BAPE shark hoodie since I was around 12, so when I get that one day I’ll think I’ve made it. It’s funny how things of no real importance are aways aspirational.
As artists from the capital, what do you think about the current state of London rap?
CM: Im not actually from London, I only studied there for a year when i was at uni before realising that my course was a waste of time. But at the same time I'm not too far from the place and I spend a lot of time there and with people who are from there. As far as the rap scene there at the moment i think it's in a good place a lot of people are benefiting from the amount of exposure the underground scene is getting right now and that's wicked.
CLBRKS: We’re technically both not from the capital, we’re from just outside in Hertfordshire *fires up the tractor*.
I’ve lived in London since 2015 and change is constant here. Community is a big thing and that’s something which is crucial to this city, so that’s inspiring. Obviously you still get the odd prick that thinks he’s gods gift, but nine out of ten people you meet are lovely.
You are out and about, feeling a bit peckish, where is your pick for a decent lunch?
CM: I’d say a shake shack or anywhere I can get a nice burger and fries, I'm a simple guy when it comes to food
CLBRKS: Probably just the cafe. I'm a sucker for a full English breakfast. If I’m ballin’ out though, anywhere that has fresh fish.