Let’s be real, we’ve been dying for even more music from Alison Wonderland since her debut studio album Run came out three years ago. Now, it’s the dawn of a new era as Awake is finally here! With this release, AW uncovers her most creative and deliberate collection of work.
In her rise to stardom, Alison (real name Alex Sholler) has found staying true to herself pays off. There were many times during the making of Awake when she seemed to be questioning a song, questioning this entire album, questioning producing at all. She stuck to her guns through it all and it’s a good thing — Awake is truly a little slice of Wonderland on earth.
Just listened to Awake alone in my room & I am very glad I stayed true to myself and my music with this
— ALISON WONDERLAND #blacklivesmatter (@awonderland) April 6, 2018
She gets a running head start with a track that’s all too familiar, “Good Enough” will hook you from the get go, as it does as the epic intro to many of her recent shows. Two tracks deeper, with “No” and “Okay” and it’s clear Alison won’t be staying in one place for too long. While “No” teeters on poppy future bass, “Okay” finds its stride with heavy subs to combat the anxious lyrics.
Taking a moment to breathe, “Easy” is a synthy, pop ballad that makes for one of the most addictive tracks on the album. Alison’s voice glides over the track like pure ear candy and we simply can’t get enough. Following up with “High” ft. Trippie Redd and the producer shows yet again that she has a taste that cannot be duplicated.
“Here 4 U” with BLESSUS is maybe what some listeners needed to hear. Transforming an inspiring message into a banging trap anthem is exactly what we can expect with an Alison Wonderland release, and she does it so damn well here. It’s a comfort track in many ways.
One of the leading singles, “Church” sets the scene for what AW needs in a relationship. Then, “Cry” totally flips the script. This is a sexy, tropical track with some of the most unapologetic lyrics we’ve heard out of Alison: “I just wanna let you know you’re mine. I just wanna fuck you all the time.”
If there were a single theme song for the Awake era it would certainly be “Happy Place,” a fan favorite track that embraces a spark of true EDM before erupting into the most recognizable drop on the album. The best part about this song, Alison has found her happy place time and time again while playing out this song live. There’s something special at work here.
“Good Girls And Bad Boys” is dirty through and through, with seriously some of the grimiest stabs ever heard by human ears. The track crash landed from outer space with a thrasher verse and heavy, heavy bass that will blow your hair back. “Self hate, regret, can drive us to death.”
Alison delivers that hip hop fix we all need with “Dreamy Dragon” featuring Chief Keef, a truly surreal record on the album built in a synthy dream world. Moving into the “Hope” interlude and we’re into the final stretch as she carefully sets us up for some more magic.
Alison Wonderland x SLUMBERJACK serve their follow up to “Naked” (one of my personal favorite AW tracks, in case you were wondering). This time around, “Sometimes Love” isn’t enough. The collaboration sounds effortless and meant to be.
I have literal tears in my eyes listening to the final track, “Awake” right now. No more words are coming to mind at the moment, as I’m left in awe. So if you’re reading this — just listen.