Alohaii, known by his previous artist name Lone Alpha, returns with a new original single "One Step At A Time" featuring Miori Celesta, a frequent artist collaborator for many of Alohaii's songs.
The new release is significant for two reasons: this is his first track as Alohaii following his artist rebrand, and is the latest work following his massive VTuber-laden album Virtual Paradise.
For this latest MusicDrop piece, we spoke with Alohaii following this release, and even got Miori's insights on working with him!
A Step Forward from the Past?
Q: This is the first track you're releasing as Alohaii. Do you think there's a significant difference in this song's direction compared to when you're doing music as Lone Alpha?
Alohaii: "I really wanted to triple the effort I put into the song compared to my previous works. In my opinion, it still feels like a Lone Alpha song at its core since I had most of this song completed before I committed to the rebrand.
"I really liked the music I created under Lone Alpha, and I want to let my style continue to develop naturally as I progress as an artist, rather than create a whole new style for the rebrand."
What's In This New Single?
Interestingly, this is your latest music project following your "Virtual Paradise" album. Do you think the new track borrows themes from your time as Lone Alpha, or is there a new creative direction to this?
"The song definitely borrows a lot of the ideas I started developing in Virtual Paradise, but I was able to flesh them out much more by focusing all my attention on this song for a few months.
"In 'Virtual Paradise' I began to explore the world of organic sounds for the first time, especially in aspects like guitar and drums, and this is definitely carried over into 'One Step At A Time.'"
In addition to you releasing this song, this is the latest project from you working alongside Miori Celesta. As an artist, what sort of musical characteristics you find appealing from her, and how has this artist-producer relationship improved?
"Firstly, Miori is fantastic to work with! I always feel that my song is in good hands when she’s the singer. Her voice is incredible, and her tone just seems to fit anything I send her.
"She also edits a lot of her own vocals, which is super practical because she understands how to record from the producer’s point of view as well. I think on both ends we’ve become more comfortable."
The Creative Process
Drawing similarity to your past releases, "One Step at a Time" is yet another summer-inspired bop from you. We're interested to know the creative process for this track.
"This whole song started the day I released 'Virtual Paradise', actually. Instead of relaxing after over a year of work, I couldn’t help but start on my next creative endeavor! I had just met the guitarist for the song, DSNG, a few days prior.
"I wanted to try a guitar driven song so I asked if he had any riff ideas, and he sent back what is now the intro of one step at a time. I basically started everything around that, and the lyrics came so naturally over the bossa nova verses that I knew we had to finish it."
For "One Step at a Time", what was your creative process in doing the lyrics for it? What drew inspiration for it?
"I wanted the lyrics to feel like they wrapped up the themes of 'Virtual Paradise'. 'Virtual Paradise' deals with change and memories a lot, and I wanted to try and conclude these ideas.
"The core theme of 'One Step At A Time' is that even if we try to embrace change like Seasons encourages, things may not work out in the end. But we have to keep moving on and let those feelings fade, even if we have to do it in slow steps."
It's All About Comfort
If there is one type of emotion your tracks should exude, what would it be and why?
"Comfort. I want people to feel a sense of comfort in and longing for the world I craft with my lyrics and sounds. Even if it just takes them to another place where everything is serene and perfect for a few minutes, I feel fulfilled as an artist."
On the Singer-Artist Dynamic
We also got the chance to catch up briefly with Miori to learn more about what she thinks of working with Alohaii for several tracks.
Q: You've worked alongside Alohaii with several tracks recently. We're interested to know what music production characteristics from him piqued your interest?
Miori: "I absolutely love that everything Alohaii writes is so uplifting, catchy and groovy, yet you can clearly tell the distinction between each song. I remember listening to the sample of the new song for the very first time and immediately jumping up and down from how excited I was!
"The touching lyrics and addicting chorus had me in love with the song at the first listen. There’s a great balance of punchy percussion, tropical synths and groovy guitar riffs that really shine through and support the vocal topline; he really outdoes himself with every song. I hope everyone really enjoys 'One Step at a Time' and all of his tracks."
Thank you to Alohaii and Miori Celesta for taking the time to answer our questions. "One Step At A Time" is now also out on Spotify, YouTube Music, and Soundcloud. The instrumental and remix stems for the track are also available for download here.
Performed by Miori Celesta
Lyrics and Music by Alohaii
Mixing by Inverse
Guitar by DSNG
Rigging by Nanaki
Art by Hiro
Animation by 26兎
Background Art by Magicolorful