Wolfram, aka Diskokaine, aka MarfloW, aka Wolfram Eckert is a music producer who revels in the music many would consider a ‘guilty pleasure’. Via his Diskokaine label he has released music from Sally Shapiro, as well as his own outfit, The Diskokaines. He has also just released his debut album under his Wolfram moniker and managed to pull in a camp cast of guests including Haddaway (yes, Haddaway) and Paul Parker – a singer best known for his disco 12″s with the legendary Patrick Cowley.
With his fantastically camp (Axel F vs Dusty Springfield? Yes please) Electronic Beats Radio Session ringing in my ears, I fired off some questions to Wolfram to see what he has to say about working with 90’s dance stars and what his favourite Euro music is.
Can you introduce yourself please – where you’re from and where you are now?
I’m a musician called Wolfram from a small village called St.Veit an der Glan in Austria. I’m in Manhattan right now and I live part time here in New York and also in Vienna.
Tell me some more about the concept behind your debut album as Wolfram.
My self-titled album Wolfram is more song based than previous tracks I have released under my Diskokaine pseudonym on labels like GOMMA and Creme Organisation. I try to combine synthesizer and electronic music of the last 35 years and put it in a contemporary pop context.
How difficult was it to get people like Paul Parker and Haddaway involved in the project?
Actually it was easy since both of them were really really friendly and excited to work on the the instrumental pieces of music I offered them to sing on. I’m really thankful that they took their time and shared their creativity.
What are they up to these days – apart from working with you?
Paul Parker is in the real estate business in San Francisco and Haddaway is still touring a lot. Everywhere from South America via Dubai to Shanghai… Actually really fancy places!
How do you keep discovering (or rediscovering) the influence of eighties euro music?
I was born in the early 80s and my Dad used to play me all those synthesizer electronica stuff from people like Vangelis, Tomita and Jean Michel Jarre. My mum also played me lots of Graceland from Paul Simon, so I think my taste is somewhere in the middle of those things… that’s why my album is now more song based than just synthy, weirdo space freakout stuff.
Have you always pursued this kind of sound / music?
How do you keep those influences fresh?
I don’t know if its fresh (what I did on my album) because basically I made it as fan of lots of [types of] music. But just the combination of lots of weird and left field “not cool” music makes it fresh maybe, but it was not about making something fresh for me…it was more like making something that was (and is) fun and emotional.
What’s your favourite Euro tune?
It depends. What’s the term Euro? Kraftwerk in the 70s and 80s was “Euro” for americans and they loved it, but if you refer to the 90s Euro genre than I only like stuff between 1990 and 1993. But I have no particular favourite track or song from that time.
What’s coming next for Wolfram?
Shooting a video for the song I made with Haddaway which is called ‘A thing called Love’. Its all about love with Haddaway, but still sometimes I dont know the exact answer to ‘What is Love?’.
Published April 27, 2011.