Simon Imrei is making waves in Australia’s folk scene

Simon Imrei is making waves in Australia’s folk scene

Words by Marnie Vinall

We chat to the rising singer-songwriter about his new single, ‘Stand Still’, and the track’s upcoming launch show.

It was only last year that Simon Imrei released his two-part album, The Sum of Scenes. But after winning a day of free studio time at Head Gap Studios in Preston, the musician got his creative brain straight back into action and produced the brand new single, ‘Stand Still’, set to be released this May.

Imrei is a long time supporter of community radio, Triple R in particular, so it’s fitting that community radio funding accelerated the creation of his new single. Winning the 2018 Band Prize as part of the Triple R Radiothon meant the musician could work with audio engineer, producer and musician, Rohan Sforcina, and put together ‘Stand Still’ quicker than originally anticipated.

“It was a song that was always going to be on the EP,” Imrei says, referring to his forthcoming EP which is set to be released later this year. “But when I won the studio time, it was a chance to go into a studio I’d never been before and do it all over a couple of days and it all came together pretty quickly.”

Imrei describes his music as falling in between storyteller folk and blues guitar. ‘Stand Still’ definitely fits this description with its melancholy Americana sound, folk-pop melody, and storytelling lyrics.

“I came from a position where I was doing more blues pop years ago, but over the last couple of years artists like Jason Isbell, Ryan Adams, Amos Lee – and also through local guys like Jordan Lane and Dan Parsons – I really got into that acoustic folk Americana storyteller sort of music.”

The narrative covered in ‘Stand Still’ is highly relatable. “It tells the story of heading down the coast, heading down the road with all your stuff packed in the back of the car, or in an old suitcase, and just detaching for a while from day-to-day life.”

Imrei admits that his life is “full of bits and pieces and pretty full on.” After registering that a lot of people around him feel the same way, he wanted to craft a song about taking a step back and he hopes others can relate and escape with him through the single.

“A lot of people around me nowadays are sort of juggling so much in their life and it’s really a song that comes from wanting to take a bit of time away,” he says. “Not in an attention seeking, ‘I’m off social media’, kind of way, but just taking some time out and stopping for a while, standing still while the world continues around you.”

Imrei has chosen one of his favourite northside venues, the Merri Creek Tavern, to launch the single on Saturday May 18. “I’ve seen some great intimate shows at that venue”, he says. “I’ve got good friends of mine, Louie and The Pride, along to support on the night. That’s a band I also play in at times, so it’s a real privilege to have them supporting on the night.”

Punters on the night will be treated to the best of the musician’s catalogue to date as well as getting a chunkier taste of the new EP, including ‘Stand Still’, of course. It’s set to be a big night for the singer/songwriter who’ll also be playing shows in Mornington, Moorabbin, Highett, Carnegie and Ormond over the coming months.

“So it’s the start of big things,” Imrei says. 

Simon Imrei launches his new single ‘Stand Still’ at the Merri Creek Tavern on Saturday May 18. His album The Sum of Scenes is available now.