The Instant Messengers
(self released, 2008)
If you can’t tell from the hip hop group’s name or the title of their recent EP Slammers!, the three emcees and one DJ that make up The Instant Messengers are children of the 90s. Vocalists Alexander Spit, Cambo, and Cheshire Darko present themselves as the voice of this up-and-coming generation when they rhyme about being the last age not completely immersed in technology or the salad days of their Power Ranger and Pog influenced childhood. The Instant Messengers are more or less like Jurassic 5 in their generation specific nostalgia, but instead of relating with the B-boys and early DJs of the 80s they reference the swing craze and other fads of the 90s.
The music production and vocal delivery of Slammers! are equally solid, and as far as the usual range of hip hop lyrics go, The IMs has a unique bone to pick with modern day life. However, I can’t always be sure what their point is. When the music screams that it wants to move the party, the lyrics take aim at the creative process of writing or the state of our environment before they explain how they’ll steal your girl from you. Despite their lyrical desire in “iHuman” for more than the current over-synthesized era has to offer, I can’t shake the irony I see in the debunking of technology despite their obvious use of it.
Regardless, The Instant Messengers write fun songs with arms wide open to listeners of all ages and walks of life. Though they reminisce about the “good ol’ days” in their lyrics, the group still brings current and interesting beats to back up what they have to say. They take their music seriously (hence a recent move from SF to LA), and if you see them live you’ll know they come to the stage with real energy, ready to move the most stubborn of listeners. I’m not predicting any particular fame or fortune, but I wouldn’t be surprised that with time and persistence The Instant Messengers will truly take the place of Jurassic 5 as the next generation’s old-schoolers.