Interview: Werewolf Diskdrive

In case you haven’t heard, Eric Elbogen (formerly of Say Hi and Say Hi To Your Mom) just began yet another new chapter of his musical career with the release of “Werewolf Diskdrive.” It’s a strangely catchy, sharp, distorted synthpop-meets-rap album with a fascinating backstory: as Elbogen’s multimedia narrative tells it, the Werewolf Diskdrive is a sentient hard drive who simply wants to make a rap album. Sound interesting? Check out the Q&A below.

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The “Werewolf Diskdrive” album cover.

Indientry: I try to ask this question of every musician: If you had to describe the color blue to a blind person in three words, how would you do it?

Eric: “Sadness, not happiness”

If you could put together a dream tour for any of your musical projects, past or current, who would it include and where would you go?

I’d like to go to Japan. I’ve never been to Japan. It would include me!

This album is angular, rough, and less “pretty” than Say Hi. Why the change in sound? Where did the inspiration come from?

I started writing a new Say Hi record and it sounded boring to me, so I wanted to see if I could do something that felt and sounded different. I had also been listening to a lot of not-too-pretty records that had never resonated with me before (but for some reason did now), so it seems like it was time to move on to something different than what I had been doing as Say Hi.

It’s been almost a week since the release of “Werewolf Diskdrive.” How has the response to the album been so far?

So far so good!

The story that you’ve built up behind the Werewolf Diskdrive is elaborate and definitely unusual. What was the inspiration behind that? How does it affect your online persona?

I thought I’d turn every element of the record release process into its own art project. That way I wouldn’t be doing any boring promotional stuff, I’d just be making art!

Between the YouTube videos and the Medium chapters, there was quite a bit of multimedia build-up about the concept of this album. Are you planning to continue publishing that content for either this album or any future Werewolf Diskdrive releases?

Yes!!

Werewolf Diskdrive seems to defy characterization of any one genre. If you were to describe the sound and themes of the album in a few words or one sentence, what would you say?

Dystopian experimental pop with a sense of humor.

This release seems to return to some of the unique roots and characteristics that defined Say Hi To Your Mom before you moved to Seattle and made the change to Say Hi – do you feel that Werewolf Diskdrive is something of a continuation or sibling of Say Hi To Your Mom rather than Say Hi?

Not really, no, I find it all to be pretty linear, all part of ever-expanding catalog and universe…

The album seems to take a pretty cynical attitude about American society’s current and future states, especially in “Gridlock” and “Kids Today,” but I never noticed much social commentary with Say Hi. Is that new for you, or am I just now noticing it? What, if anything, prompted the criticisms?

It’s there in Say Hi, you just have to look a little harder sometimes. The key, as always, is never assuming that the narrator is telling the truth. How could one not be cynical at the moment? There is a lot of messed up stuff happening in our country and the world and a lot of changes to social norms that seem more and more absurd every day.

What’s next for you? Are there any plans to tour on this album?

No plans to tour at the moment, and maybe forever. More words, more music, more pictures!

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