Conrank has been at the forefront of forward-thinking bass music for years now. The UK-born and bred producer got started as a professional beatboxer but slowly and surely made his […]
Conrank has been at the forefront of forward-thinking bass music for years now. The UK-born and bred producer got started as a professional beatboxer but slowly and surely made his productions widely known around the globe. His uncompromising brand of bass music has drawn in thousands of fans over the years and will continue to do so if he keeps cranking out the heat that he has been as of late. Today, Conrank returns to the spotlight with his sophomore album, “This Simulation’s Breached.”
Following his 2019 album “What’s A Fkng Conrank?”, his new album, which was released last week through Doctor P and Flux Pavilion’s Circus Records, showcases even more of Conrank’s production prowess.
Conrank has worked with big names in the past, collaborating on official tracks with Jantsen, Dirt Monkey, Mersiv, and Protohype, as well as providing official remixes for The Prodigy, G Jones, and Zeds Dead. Regardless of his previous accolades, the spotlight has yet to shine this bright as it is now with the unleashing of Conrank’s second full-length effort.
The new project features Conrank utilizing his own vocals and even playing some instruments himself within his work, as well as collaborations with the likes of Buku, Figure, KJ Sawka, Wreckno, Gardella, and more. A dive deeper into the mysterious mind of Conrank, “This Simulation’s Breached” once again cements the UK bass demon’s place amongst dubstep’s finest artists.
We had the exclusive opportunity to chat with Conrank to catch up on what he’s been up to, the process of his second album, and what’s to come for the Conrank project. Check out what he had to say below and be sure to give the album a full run-through to truly understand the evolution of Conrank’s sound.
HIHF: How has your production process changed since your first album, What’s a FKNG Conrank?
CONRANK: Man, it’s changed significantly…. I mean, when you start bringing in live drums, guitar, vocals everything changes, and when I’m actually writing the vocals too, it just flips everything on its head, but it’s been an amazing journey, frustrating, difficult, but amazing.
H: How did taking a break from touring and shows during the COVID shutdown affect the album?
C: To be honest, it was like my world had ended at the beginning, I was in the US, and suddenly my tour was canceled, and I couldn’t even go home… but in the end, the album wouldn’t have been what it is without that forced break. I moved countries, and suddenly had time to really create, pick up the guitar, get in the vocal booth, I needed that break, that time to explore, and it made the album in the end.
H: In your opinion, which track on the project best embodies the overall spirit of This Simulation is Breached?
C: That’s a hard one, super hard, but I would say “Moonshine”, which is why I open the album with it. It was the last track I wrote, and it just felt so right, the melody, the lyrics, it was so in the moment.
H: What was the biggest roadblock you overcame during the production of the album?
C: Suddenly going from mixing one fat layered bassline, to mixing that, plus guitars, plus live drums along with everything else, and still trying to make it loud enough to play in a dubstep set, that was so hard, what a learning experience. At the start, it was like banging my head against a brick wall, but as an artist, you have to expand and try new things, you can’t just regurgitate the same shit day in day out.
H: How did you deal with writer’s block while working on the album?
C: Change locations, like I would go and sit on the sofa and just mess around, no pressure, just write and see what comes. But tbh, writer’s block was few and far between, I was so excited with the sound and what was coming out that it seemed to just flow.
H:: In what ways does ‘This Simulation is Breached’ showcase the growth of the Conrank project since its inception nearly a decade ago?
C: I mean, I feel like I’ve gone from being a producer to an artist over that period. I feel like this album is what it’s all been working towards, it’s the start of a new chapter within the book of Conrank, and j feel like it’s the most exciting chapter yet.
H: What is the most fun experience you’ve had backstage/with your artist friends at a show since they started back up this year?
C: I’ve had such a blast hanging with Hydraulix, the dude would come hang at the table while I sold merch and shout “come get your Merch, fresh hot merch” full volumes as people rolled by, we just pissed ourselves the whole time.. it worked though, ppl took notice lol. we hadn’t really properly met before this tour and we left it like brothers, touring together does that to you…. Oh, and me and Tvboo … lol, we got hammered during the podcast… the end of it was a bit of a blur, then we ended up in his garden smoking cigars and drinking whiskey till stupid o’clock… was such a vibe, we felt it the next day though hahaha.
H: We know you are a big tattoo head. When looking for a tattoo artist, what qualities do you value the most?
C: I kind of treat my tattoos as part of my journey, they’ve all come to me if that makes sense, random scenarios that come up. Like at a festival at 3am, drunk off my ass, and my little brother was like, hey, there’s a tattooist there, I’ll pay for you to get Conrank Made Me Do It, which luckily was a massive success and the artist killed it, that’s just one example, but they all seem to just slip into place when the time is right, I never force them, it’s a time and place thing more than a thing where I look for it, I want every tatt to be a unique memory.
H: You recently started playing guitar and even lending your own vocals to some of your tracks, what inspired that?
C: A want to take things further and set new challenges, I played as a kid, but was pretty shit, and I’ve just fallen in love with it this time around. With the vocals, I always wanted to get in the booth, but it had to come organically, once again it wasn’t something I wanted to push, then one day, the lyrics for Hunter came out of nowhere and that was the start of it.
H: What’s your go-to way to relax after getting back home from a performance or from touring in general?
C: Chilling with my wife and dog is number one, driving my car is something I miss a lot when I’m away too, I love driving… oh and red wine, I can’t drink it on the road, it doesn’t feel right; but when I get home, it’s sooooo good.
H: What was it like working with ex-roommates and overall hilarious artists Gardella and Wreckno on a track? How did that come together?
C: We discussed it for a bit but needed to be the write beat, I then sent to them and they crushed it, but I hadn’t locked down the drop, I then sat on it for aaaages, and Wreckno was like … “WHATSUP MFKR…. WE DOING THIS??” Sometimes I need a kick in the ass, and bam, the next day it just all clicked into place. I loved working with them, they are funny as hella and super easy and professional… exactly how it should be. Good vibes only
H: What about the collaboration with producer/drummer KJ Sawka? How did that come to light?
C: We were in touch online, and then randomly out of the blue, we both ended up in Joshua Tree at the same time both on holiday with our better halves. We ended up at the pub and got a bit trashed while playing pool and the rest is history. The dude’s a monster on the drums, insane.
H: What do you want your listeners to know about your new album?
C: That it comes from a genuine place, I’ve channeled all my emotions and energy into this, it means so much to me, and I hope they feel that.
H: What’s next for Conrank?
Well, guitars, drums, vocals… feels like that could be really dope live right!?
Thanks so much to Conrank and his team for chatting and coordinating the interview with us! Be sure to show him some love on his socials.