Interview: Edno magazine 2003

edno magazine #11 2003 scan - esem interview
photo by Dragomir Spasov & Simeon Levy

Translation from Edno Magazine #11, 2003. Text and questions by Elena Drumeva.

Free Electron

I wouldn't discount the possibility of you never having heard of Esem (also known as Georgi Marinov), but I'll fire away, don't get angry: Esem's second album "Serial Human" is coming out in March for US label Merck and you have to, unconditionally, do these 12 stretches of cold urban trip, because it is so good I feel writing about it is pointless.


"Serial Human claims you and I are the same mass-produced unit. That's all I can say". His other favourite response is "Just because".


He can turn the sound of a tram car into a track, actually he's already done it - named 'sofiatram as ihear it' - "the result of long and intense frustration through a sleepless year". He claims the music writes itself and in my absolute favourite 'swift urban departure from what was once an innocent soul', most of the sounds happen by themselves too. "Its sound is a product of deterministic randomness. Both these were written in Sofia. They are inextricably linked to the city. The city is the subject.". He points out Martin Gore as core inspiration.

What is the difference between Enveloped and Serial Human?

They are apples and oranges really. The first is an illusion. The second is the city street.

What important things happened between the two?

There is no time interval between Enveloped and Serial Human since they both originate from the same place, and time. The first stood still, however, and with the second I had a deep urban experience, very depressing, as if I'm being mind-controlled from a distance by the military. The biggest chunk of that was an almost year-long "noir film", product of one emotional impulse. It's personal..

You dislike being compared to Boards of Canada, or not?

On the contrary, except for the fact that chronologically BOC's music appeared on my radar after some of my own did. The same music that is compared.

The silliest description of your music you've come across?

"...not content with a few fluffy harmonies, they fly out like a flock of disturbed butterflies just hatched..." from de:bug in Germany. At least that's how Maria of Homily translated it for me without fracturing the meaning.

What parties do you attend and how do you have fun?

I'd love the ability to make a private party for my friends and myself. Other than that, on the whole I'm not so sure I have much fun. (The last time we spoke he was off to perform at a Roter Fleck event in Spain - RF is a noncommercial electronic music collective - and to take part in a radio show).

List the things you care about?

Fighting the carelessness of the Aquarius in me - this is the primary thing. Before that come the people I love. If you were looking for specific things - I like TV adverts and cheesecake.

List the Bulgarian electronic musicians you currently find meaningful

Kink, Gravity Co., Bluba Lu I find interesting, Phuture Shock, Monday Morning also. There's a lot of experimenting going on at Gorna Oryahovitsa. One of the people who inspire me the most resides in Gabrovo, however he's almost impossible to meet.

What do you currently listen to?

L'usine Icl, music made by people I know on the internet, Milenita's demos, silence... Draft 7.30

Any plans to leave Bulgaria?

Next question?