Examining the depths of the human psyche and considering the profound themes of mental health, the healing power of nature and the benefits of holistic medicines; Emiji’s debut album ‘My Journeys’ is moving and cinematic to the core.
Originally from Poland, Emiji, A.K.A Marcin Ciszczon is co-founder of one of Ireland's most successful independent production houses, Diffusion Lab. He has spent nearly a decade working with some of Ireland’s most exciting musical talents in his role of producer, composer and engineer. During this time, he has worked with artists such as Jafaris, Nealo, Soulé, DAY_S, FLYNN and Mango X Mathman to name but a few.
As well as music, Emiji has also released a number of photographic aerial prints alongside the album, which capture some of Ireland’s major landmarks in a way hitherto unseen.
Goldenplec sat down with Emiji to break down the album track by track and dissect its influences, inspirations, and the important messages throughout the album
The album opens with the peaceful ‘Joy’, a track designed to lull the listener into a sense of comfort, ease and understanding, feeling as though they know what’s coming next.
“It’s reminiscent of the joy and peace you can experience being in peace with yourself” Emiji explains of the track’s origins, “when you’ve integrated your shadow into your life. You become more powerful and much happier”.
The lead single from the album, ‘Larimar’ is an exploration of the human psyche in aid of examining the importance of understanding one’s turmoil in the search for peace. “Knowing your dark side is knowing your light” Emiji explains of the track's inspiration, “It’s a reference to Jung’s shadow that I work on to integrate, knowing I’m not perfect and that I have a dark side that I can understand”.
The track is a collaboration with Dublin alt-folk duo Hvmmingbyrd, the second time the pair have teamed up. “I didn’t know the light until I knew the darkness, which simply is a lack of light” he adds of the track's true meaning.
“This is all about the simple joys of seeing early sunrise” Emiji explains of ‘Dawning’, one of the more ambient-influenced tracks of the album, suitable to soundtrack an epic post-war fantasy montage.
“When I do morning jogs, take my camera with me, sometimes take my drone and go somewhere to shoot. There’s nothing like this feeling of early morning, fresh breeze, when you can just experience pure joy and have a great start of the day!”.
In comparison to ‘Dawning’, ‘Affection’ is the point in the album in which Emiji begins to build the sense of uncertainty and unrest. “We crave affection, for feeling that we have to the other person, but sometimes the heart is closed” Emiji explains.
“And we can’t love, simply because we were conditioned, hurt, and programmed by our parents, and grandparents and the wider society”.
Examining the vulnerability that comes with unconditional love, and the wisdom and power of nature, ‘Unspoken’ features the vocals of Emiji’s partner Sandra Maria. The track draws influences from a psychedelic trip Emiji once had in a forest with Sandra.
“The beauty and wisdom of Mother Nature, it’s unspoken. We went to the Forest, and we felt like we’ve combined our souls” Emiji adds, “We opened our hearts to our true selves and souls. Then the Forest released us back to our reality and this felt like being reborn”.
The title of this track says it all, as it focuses on the sense of harmony and bliss that glazes over us in the eyes of love. “We felt that bliss and simplicity of life, embracing simple things. And that loving someone is to love yourself, as we are all part of the same being and the being itself at the same time” Marcin elaborates of the track’s true meaning.
The album takes a darker turn from here on out, as the listener is left to ponder some of the more negative aspects of their life and experience. The final four tracks tackle the artists struggles with their mental health head on, and invite the listener to come with them on the journey of self-improvement.
“Darkness still comes in and out our lives. But that’s fine” Marcin explains, “It’s a part of life. It felt much more intense and bitter in the past”.
Parks and Alleys
An ode to nostalgia, ‘Parks and Alleys’ asks the listener to look back on days gone by and remind themselves of the joy and happiness that came from our early childhood, and to consider the time that has since passed from when those memories were born. Remember the swings you used to play on, but remember too all the times you passed them, unaware of their significance in your world.
“It’s distant now, in an adult life” Emiji adds, “it feels a bit sad, but that’s OK. It’s beautiful to have good memories”. This track also features accompaniment from the renowned NCH Gamelan Orchestra
“When you were young, all the programming, the good and the bad, you’ve taken it all to your heart, all the bliss and pain” Marcin describes of the album’s penultimate track, “But now you have built a new life, once you understood that everything happens for a reason”.
The pain has long come and gone, but the remnants still remain. Scars that never truly heal, and hope that never truly fails
“My Journeys” is about encouragement to move on, step up and learn and integrate new things into one’s life” Marcin concludes of his debut, "The project makes you want to go deeper with nature, get involved in communities, and aims to help to take care of your mental health, especially in difficult times”. Tackling some truly thoughtful topics,
‘MyJourneys’ captures an artist trying best to understand the world around him, and help others seek their own inner peace.
You can purchase the album, and a limited edition aerial prints, on Bandcamp.