Elohim, a Los Angeles-based musician known for her openness about mental health alongside its struggles, laces a sense of fierce perseverance in her songwriting and production style. With powerful vulnerability emitting from the strong vocals behind her white mesh mask and microphone in hand, Elohim inspires others to possess their inner strength to heal or grow.
Her latest single, "Afraid To Fail" is a testament of her artistic notion of accepting and controlling personal struggles in her upcoming album, Power of Panic. The darkest of mental health struggles serve as a reflective, creative source for this singer-songwriter-DJ-producer to motivate others. They, too, can transmute their pain into reformation. I, Mary Mason, had the honor of inquiring with Elohim on the behalf of iHeartRaves about self-validation as a female artist in the dance music industry, coping skills, and more after Electric Forest 2023.
iHR: Elohim, thank you so much for your time! It’s an honor to interview you at this time in my life as mental health is a main priority for me. Your latest single, “Afraid To Fail”, is a song of perseverance and determination for those debilitating battles. The song reminds me that some battles are lost in the same spirit in which they are won. What motivates you to stay determined on your path or provides you hope when you “feel like a hamster on a wheel” during your most difficult moments?
Elohim: Hi thank you for asking wonderful questions and talking to me! When I am having a defeated “want to quit it all” moment sometimes the simplest message from someone telling me my music meant something to them can quite literally alter the way my brain is thinking. After a show meeting someone and they tell me they needed that experience and it helped them in a difficult time. I always try to express my gratitude for that to people because I want them to know that their beautiful words have kept me going.
iHR: If you were to create a music video for “Afraid To Fail”, which visual elements, concepts, or storyline would you like to incorporate?
E: I imagine it shot on a green screen treadmill and a HUMONGOUS hamster wheel with a tiny person endlessly running inside of it… maybe we reveal a hamster chasing her, I don’t know... Or a few different things chasing her… Hmm.
iHR: I’ve followed your performance presence for a year now. I’ve adored performance shots displaying you laying on the ground with a microphone in your hand wearing your signature white mesh mask. You exude intensity and vigor which inspires me to be unafraid to express myself. Can you describe the thoughts or feelings you experience on stage?
E: Thank you for saying that, it is really powerful to read what you wrote. See!! you just altered the way I was thinking! It’s like a breath of fresh air reading that! Some bonus oxygen to keep me going! On stage, I feel empowered! I feel emotional! I feel it is the place to release anything and everything I am holding on to. It feels like an emotional purge.
It is always different depending on the crowd, atmosphere, myself, and my state but I think that is why I keep doing it! You never really know what you're going to feel but it is always an opportunity for me to go out and try to share love, compassion, and empathy. My parents always said it doesn't matter if there is 1 person or 1,000 people in the crowd, always put on the best show and spread LOVE!
iHR: With that, watching you perform at The Carousel Stage at this year’s Electric Forest was beautiful! Your white mesh mask is becoming iconic to your personal style. What attracted you to this specific mask and how does it serve your artistic expression?
E: An amazing designer, Luke Vicious, let me go over to his very private studio and go through clothes. It was thrilling! He had made this mask with a matching shirt and said “You could try wearing this”. I got to my photo shoot and put it on and instantly felt something.
When we got the images back it felt RIGHT! For whatever reason when I looked at myself I looked strong. Still to this day when I see an image or video with me in the mask, it just feels powerful! I love the moment in the show when I rip it off and it always seems to excite the crowd which in return excites me!
iHR: As a female artist creating in a male-dominated industry, feelings of self-doubt, imposter syndrome, and anxiety are unfortunately normal. What allows you to provide self-validation as a female artist in the dance music industry?
E: I am not going to lie, it is really hard! Sometimes I am unable to self-validate and it feels impossible to get out of my own head. There are moments I see footage of myself performing and I feel as if I am watching someone else. Someone I want to be. Someone strong, in control, confidant, and bad ass. She is me but I don’t see me as her all the time.
Those moments when I can see that she is me are the best and give me a boost of confidence and resilience. Being human is really strange! We are inside of ourselves so we are brutally hard on ourselves while doubting everything. When we see other humans from the outside we adore and idolize them, give them compliments, wish we were them. I think they're looking at us the same way though… I wish we could love ourselves more!
iHR: What are your go-to coping skills that allow you to reconnect with the truest and strongest parts of yourself?
E: I would say creating is probably the quickest route to feeling like myself. Sitting at the piano, singing, writing, producing! Or even just listening to music. Family is really special for grounding and nature as well. I am not consistent with meditation and I wish I was but every time I do a 15-minute meditation, I feel changed. Sometimes a bath and sleep do the trick too.
iHR: From your entire discography, including unreleased IDs, can you name your favorite track to perform and explain why?
E: BUCKETS!!!! This is the moment I ask the crowd to join me in an emotional purge! I ask the crowd to scream with me and let all their demons out! Whatever they've been holding on to. I count to 3 and we all scream at the top of our lungs. It is the most cathartic, empowering, and refreshing thing ever.
It has been such a joy to hand out flowers after every show, meet people, and hear how much they needed the emotional purge. Someone at Electric Forest said it shifted the energy of the entire tent!
iHR: You are known for transmuting your “hurt into art," why is it important for you to seize every opportunity to express yourself harder?
E: Every opportunity—whether, good, bad, weird, magical, or scary—is the reason I am filled with inspiration. Sometimes it can be extremely difficult to peel yourself up off the floor when you're hurting so bad, but more times than not when I do I end up healed through my creation. The creation and the process of creating helps guide me to see things in a different light.
iHR: Congratulations on the scheduled release of Power of Panic this 2023! Your fans (along with myself) are thrilled to experience the continuation of your sonic hope and healing! Will you be releasing another single? If so, are you at liberty to share any details about the release?
E: Thank you!!! It is exciting! This new chapter feels really strong physically, emotionally, and mentally. I will have a bunch of singles! The next song coming out is actually a collaboration, and it is not from my album. It is called “Stop Time” and I am excited for it to be out because the response at shows has been remarkable. So when that one drops you can expect my next single a few weeks later! I have been playing a lot of the album out at shows and it feels INCREDIBLE!
iHR: How would you like to grow or develop from this stage in your life?
E: I want to continue learning to appreciate this life and every moment I am given. It is hard to grasp how miraculous it truly is that we are alive as humans at this exact moment in time. I want to live in every second, soak it up, and accept myself with love and gratitude. That is what I desire from this stage. Thank you for the beautiful questions!