Interviews

Alison Wonderland talks creating euphoria in the darkest places on her new album ‘Loner’

Alison Wonderland

On her third record Loner, Alison Wonderland’s songwriter is as honest as ever, juxtaposing euphoric drops with shattering lyrics.

After embarking on her “I am not quite ready to share my album title or artwork yet” tour across the US, Alison Wonderland dropped her most vulnerable record to date, Loner.

The album searches for euphoria when you feel trapped at rock bottom, reminding her audience that “it feels like forever, until it doesn’t”.

We chatted to Alison Wonderland about her new album, Pitbull sliding into her DMs, and blending orchestral instruments in with filthy drops.

Alison Wonderland Loner

HAPPY: First off, the elephant in the room. Did Pitbull really slide into your DMs while you were in Miami?

ALISON: I’m gonna remain mysterious on that one. What happens in the DMs stays in the DMs.

HAPPY: While we’re on the topic of sneaky messages, I read that there’s a bit of a hidden message at the end of the interlude, I’m Doing Great Now Thanks. What’s the story behind that?

ALISON: I wanted to put in a spoken word poem that I’d written, and it was almost like a manifestation or a prayer for everyone listening. I wanted to reverse it, so in order for you to know what I’m saying, you have to play the track backwards.

HAPPY: You called your tour “The I am not quite ready to share my album title or artwork yet” tour, which I absolutely love by the way. What was your label/management’s reaction when you floated that title past them?

ALISON: Funnily enough, the promo video that I made for the tour was based off of a real convo that my manager and I had on zoom 10 minutes earlier haha. At this point in my career, my label/management knows that I’m stubborn af and that I like to do things creatively my way.

HAPPY: I’ve seen a bit of footage from the tour and the visuals are absolutely insane, do you choose them yourself?

ALISON: I do, 100%. Most of my visuals are actually my concept and I’ll go to my crew and work on them with them. They are brilliant creative people and I’m so grateful that they get my vision.

 

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HAPPY: So now that you have shared your album title and artwork, you’ve mentioned there’s a crossover between the track New Day and the artwork. What’s the connection there?

ALISON: The artwork is a sunrise with my head in the clouds and it symbolizes a rebirth. I really do believe that everyday is a new chance for you.

HAPPY: I read that part of the drop in Safe Life is you playing cello. What would it take for you to tour Australia or the world (why not), playing shows where you DJ with an entire orchestra set up around the decks, absolutely shredding during the drops?

ALISON: Hahaha well, that is a very expensive thing to do. If I had my way, I would do that every fucking time.

HAPPY: Do you have any other favourite instruments or sounds that people should listen out for on the album?

ALISON: I definitely have some Garage and DnB inspired tracks on the album. I also loved playing around with the vocoder on Forever and Fuck U Love U, that’s always been something I’ve wanted to do.

HAPPY: And last I wanted to ask: If there’s one thing that you want fans to take away from Loner, what would that message be?

ALISON: When you’re at rock bottom, the only person that’s gonna get you out of it is you. It’s gonna take time and it will be hard, but you will eventually be able to change the narrative and take your power back.

Loner is out now on all streaming platforms. Or, you can grab a copy of the album on vinyl from Alison Wonderland’s website.

Get a taste for Loner below.

Photos provided.

Interview by Lochie Schuster.