Peugeot Music Vol. 1: Pure Lo-Fi Bliss

CLBRKS (pronounced CL Brooks) new mixtape Peugeot Music Vol. 1, comes in perfectly for the summer weather and makes me want to buy a fuckin' Peugeot even though I have no interest in driving or cars. Thank CLBRKS for the plug later, Peugeot.

After putting out three diverse tracks last month, South East London’s CLBRKS uses his new tape to bring lo-fi breaks and soulful melodies to the fore, with a vast array of features and producers. The production throughout, as well as CLBRKS intuitive and distinctive flow, echoes 20th century boom-bap era hip-hop, yet combines it seamlessly with the modern sounds of London rap and soul.

Oh.Eight featuring Capriisun and production from Tides is the second track on the tape, following on from a short and sweet intro track. Its an instant classic, with CLBRKS joining forces with American rapper Capriisun, literally tying together classic hip-hop and its english counterpart, over a plodding beat. The lyrical differences between the two artists help to hold interest throughout, with the flows helping to maintain some kind of coherency. Each part of the song walks along with purpose, whilst emitting feelings of summer nostalgia, perfect for those very few hot summer days (and nights) us English are lucky enough to get.

The fourth track on the tape is Dorica with production from Tusken. This track again pushes forth the head-nodding, lo-fi sound CLBRKS has shaped for himself, with the addition again of his insanely impressive lyricism. Lyrically, the song takes a much more morbid tone, frankly discussing drugs and depression but in a non-confronting way, almost to illustrate the normality of both within life. This, coupled with the beat, makes for a thought-provoking tune that manages to turn a somewhat sadder plot into a song you’d bump in the car, sorry, I mean the Peugeot…

Track six on the tape So Speshul takes the form of a slowed late-night soundtrack. The production from Drae Da Skimask champions the thudding kicks of trap music, whilst the dark piano sample playing throughout helps to keep the mood of the song dark and foreboding. The song plays out at a slow pace, with CLBRKS’ effortless flow pulling the beat along with him, delivering that early-morning track we all need after a night out.

Track twelve Barbara Kruger, rounds off the project perfectly, using aspects of all the different production styles throughout the tape, and creating something new and more upbeat. The production from Cowode and Bilo 503, lifts the tape into a relaxing crescendo of slapping compressed snares and distorted keys, increasing the pace whilst retaining the calming lo-fi sound present throughout the tape. The song lyrically fits as an end track too, with CLBRKS giving a sense of reflection on the previous songs’ themes, acting possibly as an explanation or apology.

Peugeot Music Vol. 1 is an incredibly impressive display of raw, English talent, channeling the day-to-day thoughts and feelings of today’s youth through a concise and well thought out piece of work. It balances the dark and the light, happy and sad, giving the listener something to ponder but enjoy hugely at the same time. Make sure you check out all of CLBRKS’ previous bodies of work on his SoundCloud, and head to Bandcamp to stream and purchase Peugeot Music Vol. 1 now.

Words by Oscar Ralf