Saturday, September 26, 2015

"Willma im Wunderland" now on iTunes and GooglePlay!

I promised you to write here again once the album is available in the first big shops. This has now happened, well actually it happened a few days ago already. But some special events didn't leave me much time to write a blog. Yes, as the title already says: Currently the album is only available on iTunes, GooglePlay and Routenote. The others seem to take their time again. Here are the links:

"Willma im Wunderland" on iTunes
"Willma im Wunderland" on GooglePlay
"Willma im Wunderland" on Routenote

And what's next? Now we carry on. Indeed I already work on a new album concept and some tracks are also already in the works. So you'll get new pre-release versions soon, of absolutely new material.

I want to end this post by pointing you at a nice little AlionLive video, in which you can hear almost the first half of the album:

Saturday, September 12, 2015

"Willma im Wunderland" IS OUT...but...

Holy Moly! Just 3 days more and this would be the first post on this blog since a whole year. So if you are solely reading here about the project, you may have declared it dead already. And I apologize for that. But a lot has moved since then. This is why I always encourage all friends of my music projects to become a fan on Facebook, or even a friend on my personal profile (still some slots available there). I simply found no reason in repeating over and over again something like "the album is soon coming" on this blog. That's the reason for the long silence: Simply nothing new to report.

But today I have really great news for you: The album has been finished and uploaded to the distribution service. You can buy it directly from me, or you'll have to wait JUST A BIT more. Why? Ok, let me tell you something about the distribution process: First the distributor has now to check the release if everything is fine. As it is Sunday today, I do not expect the guys over at Routenote to get at it before tomorrow. After it has been approved, the album will be available in the Routenote Direct shop. It will take 1 to 2 weeks then until it is available at the big players like iTunes and Google Play. For some of the not so big players, like XBox Music, it will take up to 4 weeks. There's nothing I can do to speed up that process.

So, why did the finishing process of the album take THAT long? Oh, that's a complicated story. So, let's keep it as short as possible: First, what we had a year ago were rough pre-release versions, which needed a lot of polishing. I spent a good amount of time getting all those flaws in song structure and the mix wiped out. I also found the original idea for the album artwork / cover a bit simple and not suitable. I also spent a good amount of time turning that idea (you can still see it above the last post) into something great. You see the result above.Then I have a lot of other projects. And if I had spent all time on "Willma im Wunderland" some people would have killed me ;). And then, that was the thing delaying the album most, some personal problems got in my way. I had to re-think my whole "strategy", approach... well, everything. None of your busines anyway ;).

But now the wait is over and what's now? As you will hear, the Willma Poppen sound has grown up a lot. It's no longer "happy, happy, joy, joy" all the time. Some of the tracks on "Willma im Wunderland", for example "Strangers To Ourselves" sound very serious and even a bit dark. For the next album (working title "The Dark Side Of The Willma"), I will increase this. For the future I plan to create two lines of Willma Poppen albums: One, the "bright side", which will continue somewhat on the original approach of the project: Fun, Pop, easy stuff to party, and a "dark side", which will be very serious, more experimental and not just sometimes brutal. I have already some tracks for the next (first dark) album in the works.

But now: Just a bit of a wait, and you'll be finally get the album. I'll keep you updated here, once the album is available at the first online shops. If you want semi-realtime updates, connect via Facebook and/or Twitter!

Monday, September 15, 2014

TWO new songs! "Willma im Wunderland" is COMPLETE!

I simply skipped a blog post. Actually the first of the two new songs was already presented to the public 11 days ago. But then all sorts of things kept me from announcing it here on the blog. Since I worked hard during the past few days to complete the last of the 13 tracks for "Willma im Wunderland" as pre-release versions, I decided to announce it all together in this blog entry.

The song uploaded 11 days ago in fact has the wonderful title "Liebe". I will keep quiet about the reasons for this, to not jeopardize the image of the "soulless cyborg-nerd". The song, like all the tracks for the album, is quite complex and has some surprising moments. The listeners of current so-called EDM (Electronic Dance Music) will be beautifully confused at some parts, because of course I have broken all quasi conventions for EDM music you can read repeated like mantras over and over again on producer forums. I simply do not want my works to seamlessly blend in with the common industrial music. This is MY music! The sound of "Liebe" is a colorful mix of the easy-fun style of the songs from "Heroes of the Popp-Culture" and the, sometimes quite hard to get used to, sound of the more recent tracks. Just listen for yourself:

This song has just been completed and those who suspect a link to "Strandspaziergang" in the title, have a point. In fact, "Abendspaziergang" was inspired by this, incidentally quite successful,  track. First listeners say, that they already have spotted clear similarities in melody and sounds ;). However, "Abendspaziergang" is in no way a "Strandspaziergang reloaded", but a much more complex and entirely new idea. Judge by yourself: Just listen to both and let me know what you think ;).

"Willma im Wunderland" is COMPLETE!
Yessssssss !!! We have 13, in my opinion very great, tracks for this album as raw versions. But if you think, that the album would be available tomorrow, I have to disappoint you. Now a big heap of work begins. Those raw gems now want to get their final touch, which will take quite a bit of time. Therefore, and I would like to announce this at the opportunity, there will probably no new works for some time. I will now fully concentrate on how to perfect these 13 songs. I will this time use some new techniques in the area of the final production, which will make "Willma im Wunderland" a special sound experience. Let me surprise you. Oh, and who happens to have followed the process of the release of the recent alionsonny album: No, it will not take that long because all 13 tracks have been created during the past almost 2 years, and are thus developed quite far this time. Yepp, and I am off to work again. I will always keep you up to date about the progress of the album here and also on the alionmind blog.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

The "Nachtwanderer" is here!

Let's not get bogged in fruitless discussions whether both the title of the new Willma Poppen piece , as well as the this blog article, are fitting. I find both entirely appropriate and that's what counts ;). After a not SO long wait Willma shoots sharp again. The "inner circle" of the listeners, however, already voiced their reservations on the occasion of me posting the song on Facebook 2 days ago, whether this piece of music would be really suitable for the Willma Poppen project. Why ? Well, I wondered at first also, but I now have to admit that the question is not entirely irrelevant. "Nachtwanderer" is in fact a, for the Willma Poppen project, unusually serious piece. Yes, it is really quite dark, and so I also thought initially about, if this is not rather something for Cimeliums dark "Ad Hominem" album. For this it is, in my opinion, a bit too poppy and danceable. We are long out of the times when Willma Poppen was exclusively for sugar sweet Poptechno. And we want to get away from that indeed, not quite but plenty far away.

"Nachtwanderer" was created, believe it or not, originally from the idea to disfigure contemporary African pop music. Is to say: I had heard the works of some African musician colleagues in a FL Studio Facebook group, and here I stumbled upon one or other track, which made ​​me want to hijack this or that rhythm part. But more and more again, the typical path of the Chaos Lord was kicking in and I mixed in Psytrance, 80s pop and some influences of the 90s. In the end I found the concept so great, that I no longer wanted to go back to the initial concept. So, there we have it: A piece that once more is between the genre borders, and therefore probably draws the pure rage of the purists of the affected genres to itself. So be it :D

Overall, I find that "Nachtwanderer" best enqueues itself into the evolution of the Willma Poppen project since the completion of the "Heroes of the Popp-Culture" album. And here is the "Nachtwanderer". Have fun !

Monday, March 3, 2014

Willma Poppen presents: "Blauer Montag"!

As I already wrote in the description for the new Willma Poppen song "Blauer Montag" yesterday: It's rough, it's dirty , it's LOUD! This is probably the absolute correct description for the latest work for this project. And above all, it is farout. At latest when you arrive at approximately 4 minutes of the track, you will agree.

The title
What a stupid title is this again? So either you have not yet heard the song and/or you have no idea of electronic music of the 80s. The slight references (*cough*) to a well known chart breaker of this decade should not remain hidden even to a deaf person. When I thought about a title, I got a hearty fit of laughter, when I translated the title of the 80's songs literally into German. We absolutely had a name for the baby!

The stylistic references were not the beginning of the development of this work. In the beginning it was all really a completely genuine idea. But little by little I heard more and more similarities with the classic and thought it would be funny to emphasize them at least a part of the track. Some will now complain that I haven't done a 1:1 copy of the "New Order" classic. I did not want to do that. It's not that am unable to do this theoretically, but have you ever experienced that I had fun to create 1:1 copies? Nope , not my thing!

So what's next?
To end this post, I would like to tell those who do not already know, that this is a pre-release version. So, this is not the version that will soon end up on the album "Willma im Wunderland". Oh yes, the Album: Only 3 songs left to do! Ok, that was really enough text. Here's "Blauer Montag". Recommended volume setting? LOUD! The neighbors will thank you ;) .

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Minimalism rocks : The Maschinenmensch

After over two months of silence, it is really about time for something new from Willma Poppen. The long pause has been caused by internal turmoil in the house of alionmind and by the fact that I used most of my creative energy to finish the, long overdue, alionsonny album "Continuity".

Style / Sound
I believe that with "Machine Man" once again I gave the Willma Poppen project a little more "seriousness". After some veteran Willma Poppen listeners already complained, that "Strangers to Ourselves" was be too gloomy and "overly sophisticated", also "Maschinenmensch" is not just another happy, funny and fluffy pop song. I actually announced very early - since the release of "Heroes of the Popp-Culture" -  that I want to lead the Willma Poppen sound at least partly in a more serious and progressive direction. Let's be honest: Always only major chord progressions with cheerful and funny melodies? This would be but very boring in the long run and a after the second album of this type also the toughest Popper would absolutely bored by the sound. So it will be now and then something more serious and that's also nice ;)

The idea
The reason why this track is a bit unusual for Willma Poppen is, that I applied a quite different strategy this time. The original approach for this song was rather minimalism than complexity. You could easily hear it: Since Willma "grew up" (the end of the community project), the tracks became more and more playful and complex. And that happened to such an extent that not just a few listeners complained already about too much "fiddling". Well, always 4-on-the-floor beat, gated supersaws with funny simple arpeggios is very boring in the long run. But with "Maschinenmensch" I had, at least initially, a very simple idea and didn't want to create unnecessary complexity. The fact that I broke out of that minimalistic approach at least regarding to the effects... well, the leopard can't change its spots.. However, I could preserve a lot of minimalism by using just one synthesizer for everything but the drums. "Maschinenmensch" was all the way completed in record time in its current version. In only two studio sessions - both of considerable length - all was soldered together .

This is now the ninth title of traditionally 13 for "Willma in Wunderland". Slowly we come closer to a new album. One thing is clear: This album is a pretty colorful piñata. From almost grotesque "Über-Popp " aka " Funfair Techno" to almost commercial titles such as "Strangers to Ourselves" to the minimalism of "Maschinenmensch": All included. For the next track of Willma Poppen I promise that it will be funny and happy again... or not ;) . So, and now have fun with "Maschinenmensch"!

Friday, September 20, 2013

Strangers to Ourselves feat. Donnie Ozone - Willma grows up?

Willma grows up?
No idea if this is true. At least that was what an early listener of "Stranger to Ourselves" said about the track. The song was in fact already showcased the day before yesterday evening on Soundcloud and Facebook. Unfortunately, that listener could not explain in detail why Willma, in his opinion, grows up. I guess that he simply liked the song more than the previous releases. And "Strangers to Ourselves" actually differs in some aspects from all previous releases.

It is the first time that a human voice can be heard more than just fractions of a second in a Willma Poppen production. It has frequently been suggested by listeners to publish Willma Poppen productions with vocals, or at least spoken word. And several times, especially during the phase of community project, we tried it a few times. However, the attempts were regularly discarded during the early development state. And I personally didn't see any reason so far to produce music with vocals for any of my projects, partly for the following reasons:
  1. There is really enough music with vocals available. I know some of the listeners Willma Poppen project, who seem to be allergic against any form of vocal performance in music. They are happy about each and every instrumental piece. I also do not like to listen to music with vocals on some days . Especially when, for example, blogging . ;)
  2. I understand the aversion, mentioned in 1. pretty much, if I hear the often unbearable whining or intercourse noise, called singing these days, which finds particular application in electronic dance music. And let's not talk about the lyrics. Let's put it that way: The topic is very limited and not particularly demanding. This is nothing that I want to produce!
  3. Oh yes, there is also electronic dance music with quite sophisticated lyrics. But now listen to the previous Willma Poppen productions and think about whether lyrics with a deeper meaning would fit to it. I imagine just how someone sings, for example, socially critical lyrics, to, for example, the sound of "Heroes of the Popp-Culture". Inconceivable! And what kind of lyrics would fit the colorful and happy sound of the previous productions? Correct -> see 2. ;)
  4. Of cause there were singers who wanted to do collaborations. However, they mostly showed the sonic and lyrical preferences, described under 3. So a collaboration did never come to pass. At others the quality of the vocal performances was in no way suitable for a wider audience than the one that fits into a phone booth. Just as an example: A sound recording of a painful whining, most probably recorded using a cell phone, with "lyrics" constantly repeating "baby i want your uh uh!", does not motivate me to produce a piece of music with the performer.
This time, as I said, actually there is a human voice, namely by Donnie Ozone, present in the new song. It is "only" spoken words, but these have a deeper meaning.

Until recently, the use of minor chords and gloomy sound elements was largely prevented by the well known happy party image of the Willma Poppen project. Yes, "Strangers to Ourselves" is in some places ;) cheerful and lively too, but a lot "deeper" than the previous releases. Of cause it is "danceable". If I WOULD call "Strangers to Ourselves" a Psytrance track (where I personally locate it), I could be sure to turn all fans of this genre hostile against me... oops...

Single Release
This is the first Willma Poppen track, which will be released on iTunes , Amazon, eMusic , Routenote as a MP3 single upfront to the album release. The track will of course also be released on the upcoming album "Willma in Wunderland" in a revised version . The "insiders" are now wondering whether I have broken with my practice of "pre-release" and "final release" . Yes, exceptionally. However, I 've spent enough time, producing the track, to start this experiment. Yepp, it's an experiment :)

The History
As I already mentioned on Facebook, there is a little story behind the making of "Strangers to Ourselves": I recently became an avid fan of the BBC TV series "Doctor Who". No, I still have no TV. It is also available on DVD. And during that time I enjoyed listening to Psytrance while working on 3D projects. When I worked on new ideas for my music projects again, both things were somehow mutually influencing my work: I got the idea to produce something like Psytrance in my very personal style... as always. As "subject" of the song I had chosen the series "Doctor Who". So I wanted a track that was stylistically inspired by psytrance and I wanted it to be somehow "Doctor Who themed". I succeeded, in my opinion, quite well. I almost had arranged everything and wanted to start doing the detail work, when I noticed that "there's something missing". What was it? I just didn't get it! So i stopped working at the track for a few days. Then I listened to the track again. And BOOM! There it was! "Usually, vocals would be kicking in here...". A bold idea... indeed ;). So I went to CCMixter, a site which had already provided me with vocal material for the one or the other experiment of my other projects. A search for "acapella dance" gave gruelsome result of the kind mentioned above. I was about to abandon my plan and tried a search for "acapella" without "dance". The result: Tons of Rap! When I was about to completely give up, I found "Donnie Ozone - Strangers to Ourselves". It was a professionally recorded spoken word sample, not long, but the spoken text hit me like a bolt of lightning. IF something would fit a "Doctor Who themed" track, then this spoken text. Who is Doctor Who(phun intended)? A superhuman being, virtually immortal. If he dies, he simply regenerates a new body. AND despite his superhuman nature, he learns about who he really is only during his travels and adventures. If you now listen to the lyrics of "Strangers to Ourselves"... fits excellent. The sample was under the Creative Commons license "Attribution" and not "Non-Commercial", so it is enough that I specifically mention the author and then it  is allowed to use it even for commercial productions. Perfect !

Did I forget anything? For sure! But now you look at this monster of text... Oh, yes you have just read it ;). Yes, this song means a lot to me personally. I think it's just great. Is that bad? Ok, now that's enough. MUSIC!