Street Rat is the moniker of New Zealand songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer Imraan Paleker. While working for years as a session musician, collaborator and producer for others, Paleker has always written and recorded his own music in his spare time. His debut EP “This Dance” (2016) entirely written, performed and produced by Paleker himself, set a blueprint for his multi-faceted artistry, combining cross-genre sensibilities with ferocious talent to deliver an intricate, warm and authentic sound. After spending time living in Brisbane, Paleker became a central and respected figure in the local music community, consistently pushing and exploring boundaries as a collaborator and mentor. Lending his guitar work to five Soul Has No Tempo releases to date, the progression felt natural for the label to become the home for his debut album.
London-based since 2019 to join his long-time friend and collaborator Jordan Rakei on his “Origin” worldwide tour, Imraan is now ready to deliver his most accomplished offering yet, showcasing his growing abilities and confidence as a genuine artist in his own terms. “Nothing As It Seems” is a powerful blend of modern soul and alternative rock, with jazz & electronic sensibilities. Imraan pairs candid songwriting with heavy orchestrations, unpredictable melodic shifts and a whimsical pop flavour. The music is soulful and full of shamelessly adventurous chord progressions, yet it exudes love for the spiralling tapestry of alternative rock, giving it a unique raw and direct feel.
“ I hope for people to recognise that what I've made comes from a place of expression first before a place of "skill and talent" ” says Imraan, whose album is very much an introspective journey through his life. Exploring various aspects of navigating his own existence, looking at elements of one's past which remain and those left behind for a brighter future.
In addition to writing, producing, mixing, and playing almost all instruments on the album, Imraan also designed the cover and various animated videos that go with it. “I really want to be able to exercise my creativity and experiment in lots of ways too in the future” he says, and this is the statement of someone operating on their own internal expressive logic rather than throwing ideas at the wall to fit a box.