Interviews: HOG MEETS FROG

On this new occasion, we have had the opportunity to interview the Progressive Rock/Stoner Rock/Funk band, HOG MEETS FROG from Austria. Check out the interview and follow the band on their FACEBOOK PAGE.

1. Where did you get the idea for the band name, you plan it, or did it came out just like that?

To be honest, the inspiration for the name ‘HOG MEETS FROG’ was a joke about the band ‘Dog Eat Dog’. As soon as I made the joke, I had the story of a pig and a frog meeting and having fun with each other. But it should take some time before a band was gifted with the name and the story of the pig and the frog was told for the first time.

2. Why did you want to play this genre?

We didn't choose the genre or rather the genres in which we move. Influenced by everything we've ever heard, what happens when we play is simply what happens. We are always asked for a concept - also because of our live performance with changing masks and small tools - but there is no consciously conceived concept. That's also the reason why we talk about a non-conceptual concept for our new EP "humANIMALization", for example. The concept is not to have one and to let things run their course in the making (in the first place) and then to make out of what comes what it finally is after a bit of tinkering - we also call it SQUEAQUACKmusic.

3. Did you know each other before the band was formed?

No, we didn't know each other back then the way we play together today. Since it happened that the band was formed, there were a few new faces on the drums and on the guitar. The only constant - or if you want – the bold red line is me (petz). The great thing about the changes is that we were lucky enough to make a step forward in our development with almost every new member.

4. Each band member's favorite band?

Ariyan: I was totally an Opeth guy, through and through for the longest time; but I don’t really have a favorite band anymore nowadays. I just go through my seasonal musical phases I guess. lately, I've been very much into Pleabian Grandstand from France, they’re magnificent!

Petz: My favorite band is hard to say. There are so many bands I like to listen to. But what I do hear most these days is Franz Zappa.

5. Who or what inspires you to write songs?

Musically and lyrically, the biggest inspiration for me in songwriting are the people I talk to or watch on the street or at the coffee house and try to understand their (inter)actions and stories. But also the rhythm of an escalator, the sound a dog makes while walking, or even a simple fart in the underground are just as good sources of ideas as world events, documentaries, science, and many other things. 

6. Where was your last gig?

The last gig of HOG MEETS FROG was in a venue in Vienna - a former slaughterhouse.

7. Where would you like to act?

Like probably most bands, we would like to play on big festival stages all over the world, like Bonnaroo Festival (US) or Roskilde (Denmark). In the end, we just love to play live, whether it's open-air or halls, clubs or bars – the main thing is "live".

8. Whom would you like to feature with?

There are so many bands around the world we’d like to play with. We don't care if our styles fit together, for us it's more important that it fits interpersonal. But if you want to hear famous or at least well-known names: I think that would be to play with Psychostick, for example – they are so weird. But of course, it would be great to play with bands like PRIMUS or Red Hot Chili Peppers, TOOL, S. O. A. D. (Serj Tankian), Foo Fighters, Hollywood Vampires or Fantomas and so many others.

9. Whom not?

As mentioned before, interpersonal is very important to us. One doesn't have to get married right away, but it should be true in the basics. Bands that represent a racist, homophobic, antisocial, contemptuous or anti-scientific (critical is okay, but not hostile) worldview, we want to avoid playing with them.

10. Have any of you ever suffered from stage fright? Any tip for beginners on how to beat that?

Ariyan: Yeah, for sure. It'd be very weird if I don’t have any before a show. It's a good thing, I think. I'd say just roll with it and do your thing, cause no one gives a shit anyways xD. 

Petz: I have a more or less pleasant tingling in my stomach before every show. Fortunately, this tingling has become a stomach ache only twice, and so much so that the band was already announced loudly, should have started to play, the whole band was on stage ... and I... well, I was sitting on the toilet with a rebellious stomach. Funny enough, that was both times not with HOG MEETS FROG. Maybe because with HOG MEETS FROG I have (unfortunately) organizational things to do around the concert - before and after. Whether there is a recipe against stage fright, I can not say, but a quiet place to look for, take a deep breath, come down and focus on the gig, that helps, as far as I've heard, quite well.

11. What bands have inspired you the most?

Ariyan: Well, definitely Metallica in my early years (and pretty much every other metalhead). And after that, I guess I just went down the rabbit hole of discovering all kinds of weird and interesting music. Would take too long to mention, so let’s just stick with Metallica... cause again, who gives a shit. 

Petz: There is no particular influence I’d like to name, or a band I take my cue from. In principle, everything I listen to influences me - even if I don't like it. But if I have to name some important bands/artists that I have listened to (or still listen to) from my childhood on since today: e.g. some Austrian bands and artists like Georg Danzer, EAV, Falco, and – of course – international ones like Queen, Guns N Roses, Metallica, RHCP, Primus, Frank Zappa, Béla Fleck & the Flecktones... and so many more

12. What's the weirdest thing a fan has ever asked you for?

The funniest thing I've ever been asked by a fan was if I could give him an autograph on his penis. Well. . . I told him if I don't have to attack him, that was fine with me. So he opened his pants in front of all the people, pulled his dick long and I scribbled on his pen with a pencil. I was amused - like all the others around us – and he was happy.

13. What do you think of your fans?

I don't like to say things like, "You're the best audience ever. " or something. What I can say is that we don't make our music for someone else to like it, but we're happy (and of course, it's a good feeling) when people like our music and recognize that we do something for themselves or maybe even a part of themselves. And - not to forget - we are grateful for the support of our fans. I can't promise that this will always happen in any case, but we try to keep in touch with our fans before or after the concerts as well as when we are on stage.

14. What do you think of our site?

The website is well-structured and very user-friendly. The design is the most imposing sense of the word "simple" because it does not distract from the contents. There is a lot of interesting content to be found - new and old so back to 2015. What I personally like very much is the possibility to check out or buy music on your website (via Bandcamp). That is a very good idea when you see it in the context of the reports. Thumbs up from our side for the site :-).

15. Something to add?

HOG MEETS FROGs humANIMALization to be released on 24 Feb 2023.

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