Meta Incognita, new album by Electrons In Slow Motion

Exploratory and deeply cinematic, Meta Incognita will sail you through new horizons and new worlds, patiently waiting to be discovered throughout its masterfully crafted nine tracks.

Set sail through technological landscapes and organic structures, in unpredictable times. Venture to the Unknown Limits, with the challenge of a shapeshifting map. Choose your path, the angle of the hike, the right amount of oxygen flowing. Hybrid electronics, ambient techno and spacey post-rock warps; this is music for explorers.

Produced and finished entirely during the lockdown, Electrons In Slow Motion’s Meta Incognita is now available. We spoke with Marius Copel, the artist behind EISM, about his new album, his process and the music that shaped him.

Meta Incognita, new album by Electrons In Slow Motion – an interview w. Marius Copel

Guide us a bit through your new album “Meta Incognita” – how did it take shape, when did you first start working on it?

The first seeds of the album have been planted a couple of years ago, but they were just some stems of a new sound I was searching for. Almost all of that was reshaped in time. The real trigger that initiated the concept was actually the title “Meta Incognita” meaning “Unknown Limits” in Latin. This idea/image generated the whole story I’ve followed during the composition, trying to create through sound some territories that exist at the very edges of our current perception. Places that once discovered expand our personal aspirations in a meaningful way. It is also the name of a Canadian peninsula, just below the Polar Circle. But this was only a coincidence, or providence maybe, as afterwards the publisher turned out to be D.M.T. Records, a Quebec based label.

Is there a particular theme or subject you wanted to explore throughout the album?

I have always been captivated by stories that develop at the thresholds or at the intersections of divergent worlds. Of course, this feeling started to outline itself in very concrete situations – like visiting places where two different cultures were merging, as well as in sensorial moments like traveling in a high speed bullet train and watching life moving in slow motion, reaching the top floor of a cloud-high building, observing the dusk descending to the surface of deep waters or feeling the first curtain of heavy rain touching the hot ground. It is almost magic realism. And I believe the notion of crossing borders applies as much to the internal being as to the physical act of transiting. And these particular spaces can be points of transcendence. Gates to a new point of a view, a small shift in your perspective that remains with you forever. The narrative of the album is proposing a journey in perceptible landscapes, covering moments of tension, in a forward motion, traveling from border to border. The experience for the listener may be that he discovers his own, unique, “walk” or “hike”. I wanted to dedicate the material to the explorers that travel in both directions, exterior and interior.

What’s the track that required the most work/effort to put into?

Some of them emerged rather quickly, some at the very opposite. But the one that took its own time to define was “Doria”. I was really trying to create the feeling of walking in a deep forest, discovered unexpectedly in the middle of a suffocated city, while hidden thoughts and unknown memories start revealing themselves. The image that inspired this was a huge natural park in the middle of Rome, a place that was as serene as the huge surrounding metropolis was chaotic. People were exploring it peacefully, most of them alone, and despite the vast space, the feeling of connection was present everywhere. I hope I’ve expressed a glimpse of that in the final version of the track.

This is your first release at D.M.T. Records. How does it feel?

D.M.T. Records is a very forward-thinking label, proposing mostly artists from the darker and deeper spectrum of electronic music. The fact that a project like EISM, with a cinematic/ambient electronica frame, found its place in this context is a great pleasure for me. Of course, we stayed in touch for more than a year, preparing this partnership during these difficult times. I am very happy with it, in the end it transcended borders so swiftly. The fact that we are more than 7000 Km apart, as they are based in Montreal, it was not an issue. Honest human communication eliminates the physical distances.

And of course, the question of the hour – how did the pandemic affect your album and the whole process around it? Both positive and negative aspects.

The whole album was produced and finished during the lockdown period. Personally, it provided me time to breathe and experiment. Moments like these can make all of us more creative if we manage the resources it brings, right in the middle of the storm. At the same time, luckily, the internet helps us reach a global scene so fast and easy. The audience is so reachable and diverse now. And the delivery of your work can be designed as a one-to-one communication, more than ever. This approach has the possibility to build a stronger, deeper, more authentic, fan base. The not so pleasant part is that the live acts, the physical interactions, the true presence of the artist have been put on hold, for a long period of time. We will have to reinvent a lot of angles of this relationship, of the human touch. Returning to the album, I decided at the last moment to add an intro, a prelude, based on a field recording I have made just before the outbreak of the pandemic. It was taken in February 2020, in Rome, in an overcrowded venue, full of people from all over the world. No music was playing, everyone was talking, socializing, interacting. I considered it an artefact of an old world, a small time capsule, in the present context. Hopefully, we will get back there, to a similar reality. But better. And wiser.

Last but not least tell us about the music that shaped you.

My background is very eclectic, like a disorganized, messy archive. And this trend keeps on going, as I discover new things I like on a regular basis. I pump my headphones in the same session with raw hip-hop, emotional post-rock, cerebral techno or metaphysical ambient. I don’t know if this is good, bad or coherent, but I certainly don’t get bored or tired. Regarding the influences and the inspiring moments for Electrons in Slow Motion project specifically, they come from the same part of the building like Loscil, Wolfgang Voigt (G A S), Brian Eno or Fennesz, but also from across the road or from a distant neighborhood like Mogwai, Prodigy and even Miles Davis.

Marius Copel is a musician & visual artist based in Bucharest, and also the artistic director of one of the very few political film festivals in the world, Cinepolitica International Film Festival.

Meta Incognita – out now!

EISM – Meta Incognita (official album trailer) from EISM on Vimeo.