On the heels of his latest EP Closer 2 U, we had the awesome opportunity to chat with the extremely talented Slow Magic.

Recent singles ‘Home’ and ‘Somewhere’ set the tone for the latest release from the anonymous producer/DJ – the latter being a collaborative effort employing ShallouWoven in Hiatus included on the full-length EP.

Closer 2 U is a vulnerable record that reflects upon the relationship of distance and intimacy. As the chill-electronica artist simmers through the struggles of a quarantined world, they nevertheless brought an impressive supporting cast along. Beyond the aforementioned collab, Manila Killa makes an appearance on the 4-track EP released through his independent label Moving Castle.

Although it’s hard to get close these days, Slow Magic was open & honest in our enlightening exchange. Be sure to enjoy the variety of Closer 2 U as well as Slow Magic’s own impressions of the release below!

H: Your previous record, Float, included some unique ventures for your discography – notably the inclusion of live drums & guest vocalists. What sort of musical innovations are your bringing to the table with the latest record?

SM: With the latest music, I have continued branching out to working with more writers, vocalists, and producers then I had previously. Before the quarantine happened this year, I had spent more time in LA working with a lot of different talented people. It was nice to get out of my usual bedroom space to bounce ideas off of people IRL.

H: The singles leading up to this EP have been largely collaborative in nature as well; however, your debut & sophomore albums are entirely solo ventures. What inspired the pivot into more consistently collaborative works?

SM: I would say that doing more collaborative songs and projects has always been something I’ve wanted to do. I also think I’ve opened up the door to it a bit more than I had in the past. ▲ and How To Run Away were very focused and I didn’t let other people in on the creative process too much. I did have friends provide vocals though for both of those records, so I wouldn’t say that Slow Magic has ever been a truly solo project.

H: What does the upcoming EP mean to you? What sort of feelings were poured into this record?

SM: ‘Closer 2 U’ represents the desire to be closer to someone when you physically cannot be. Obviously, a lot of people in the world right now are separated from their friends and their loved ones, so the song Closer 2 U and the EP  share the sentiment of longing to be closer.

H: You’ve stated previously that your anonymity as an artist seeks to keep the focus on music instead of yourself. Do you ever feel as if your personal expressiveness is stifled as a result? Moreover, how does your role as an anonymous artist intersect with your music?

SM: Being anonymous is definitely an interesting journey! Although I hide aspects of my personal life and the visual of my identity, I’d say Slow Magic is the most personal project I’ve ever done. It has been a struggle at times to not get my personality across, but just this year by starting a Patreon and a podcast with my wife Dream Angel, I’ve been able to open up a bit more by using my voice to connect with people.

H: The nation (and world at large) have obviously grown more comfortable with the public concept of masks as a result of the current public health crisis. Do you feel like your thunder has been stolen as a pre-quarantine mask-champion?

SM: Haha no not at all! I will say that I have had a lot of practice wearing a mask in hot or physically difficult situations though. Please everyone, if I can wear a 5 pound mask for an hour on a hot stage jumping around you can wear one at the grocery store. We need to look out and protect each other. ♡

H: In all seriousness, though, how has the quarantine affected your creative process? How has it affected the timeline of this record?

SM: Definitely. We moved to Vermont near the beginning of the pandemic and have started a new chapter in our life over here. The album (titled oddly enough “it’s the end of the world but its ok”) was named and planned all the way back in 2018. Since then the world has actually felt like it was ending in a lot of ways. Beyond the concepts and ideas shifting a bit, the album itself has turned into a more sequential and spaced out release because I want to be able to release more frequently.

H: Although its more difficult to share a studio, it seems as if many artists are thriving creatively right now. Has it been easier or harder for you to get involved in collaborative efforts during quarantine?

SM: The track with Manila Killa was done 100% remotely during the quarantine, and sometimes it just clicks even from far distances. As fun as it can be working in the same room, sometimes the internet works just as well. I was able to work in the studio with Joe (Shallou) before this year on what became Somewhere and that was helpful.

H: With live music on the back burner for the time being, what does your roadmap look like as an artist? What do you envision will come next following the release of this EP?

SM: The rest of 2020 includes releasing the rest of this album that will all become “its the end of the world but its ok”. On top of that I’ve been putting a lot of unreleased stuff out on my Patreon and making a podcast with my wife Dream Angel where we interview musicians.

H: If you could play a show in any city in the world right now – where would you play & why?

SM: Oooh this one is easy because I miss Tokyo a lot. Not only just to play a fun show but I’d love to go back and just eat a ton of amazing food. I really miss traveling in general.

H: What do you miss most about the “old world”? Does this EP reflect the ways your life has changed in recent times, or does the inspiration pre-date the current circumstances?

SM: Most of the inspiration pre-dates this year, but the themes ring true still; it may seem like it’s the end of the world, but we will get through this together.

Huge thank you to Slow Magic for chatting with us! Enjoy his new EP here: https://open.spotify.com/album/5ocKsbe4lYxQUCtgKoU1HQ

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