-by Taylor Odishaw-Dyck
I M U R is being coined as the ‘Make-out Music Making Trio’, and for good reason, as their compositions have consistently contained two essential mood-setting elements: groove-filled rhythms with raw, romantic vocal play.
The three essential members of I M U R joined me for a FaceTime in the sunny living room above their home studio in Vancouver, BC. The trio is made up of producer/guitarist/percussionist Mikey J Blige, producer/multi-instrumentalist Amine Bouzaher, and vocalist/front-woman Jenny Lea.
It was my first time catching up with them since their 2018 Circle Carnival set in Calgary where they opened up for Moontricks. It didn’t take long to be reminded of their mutual sense of humour and upbeat attitude. It goes to show that chemistry in everyday life is the key to finding chemistry in the studio; and from my first few listens to ‘Case of You’, it is evident that their production flow has reached an all-time high.
When I asked the three of them how their artistic approach has been received by today’s indie music audiences (as opposed to the alternative consumer market of five-ten years ago), J Blige piped up, stating, “I think five years ago, having a queer narrative might not be as common; I think it’s received with more open arms.” He paused to grapple with the right way to word his response, and continued, “Regardless, very cool to see how positive and warm the responses have been. I think the way that the envelope is being pushed is great.”
In the intro of ‘Case of You’, the ocean breeze atmosphere set by the filtered instruments and crashing waves is acutely disarming. Jenny’s intro vocals take the listener from the pussy-footing exposition into the jaw-dropping bridge and then into the comfy, casual chorus.
The lyrics “I could drink a case of you // I don’t need no chase with you” tell a vivid personal experience of finding a like-minded companion who’s easy to be around. Reflecting on her lyrical creation, Lea stated that the content is “about remembering those first few minutes when you were falling in love. A snapshot of flirtation, infatuation, and living in the moment.”
The video itself touches on a few other subtexts: chain-smoking blunts, stirring up ruckus downtown with a fun-loving partner-in-crime, even robbing a convenience store for some reason. Said robbery takes place during a tantalizing key/tempo change at 3:12 where some crunchy breakfast-cereal guitar is added in the upper stratosphere of the mix, as Jenny’s vocals are tastefully layered and resampled for the final thirty seconds of the beat. Bravo to Mikey, Amine and Jenny—three self-producing prodigies.
The Vancouver-based indie group is determined to reach their target audience, and Bouzaher credits their online reach for the success they have found, explaining, “…the benefit is being able to reach people on a larger scale who will vibe with the elements. The internet is a micro medium, so you can reach a tiny group; we benefit by reaching the people we want to reach more easily.”
If I M U R has enveloped you into their fan funnel, be sure to keep your ear to the ground for their impending album drop, ‘My Molecules’, on June 25th—not to mention a second single, coming this April. By then, you too might be thinking “I could drink a case of you…”