Alma – FAULT Magazine Covershoot and Interview

Here comes Alma, the fiery Finnish artist whose recent singles have garnered widespread acclaim and anticipation for her long-awaited second album. With famous fans such as Elton John and Miley Cyrus, Alma has created an album full of surging alt-pop delivered with her signature attitude, intensity, and superlative vocal range. In this interview, Alma discusses her songwriting process, her decision to keep her collaborators close-knit, and what she hopes fans take away from her new album ‘Time Machine.’

Can you tell us more about your songwriting process for the songs on ‘Time Machine’? How did you go about exploring the highlights and lowlights of your life?

It was very natural for me. I think many people started to question a lot of things in their life when COVID hit – and so did I. I thought that if I had a career after COVID, I felt the need to be 100% real on this album and only follow my vision.

You’ve mentioned that this album allowed you to push your inner feelings to the fore. Was it difficult to be vulnerable in your songwriting?

I saw a meme/quote that said “the greatest time machine is a song”; and this album and songs really take me back to my most beautiful and awful memories. All the songs are my real stories, and I’ve always wanted to talk about them but I haven’t been ready before this record. When I sat down to start writing this album, the songwriting came naturally.

You worked with a more intimate group of collaborators on this album. Can you tell us more about your decision to keep it close-knit this time around?

Well, it wasn’t really my decision at first (…COVID!). But I fell in love with Elvira and Tove. We had such great and raw energy. I also fell in love with this kind of way to make music and albums…we were all just focused on making honest and raw music and being true to ourselves.

Your previous singles, such as ‘Summer Really Hurt Us’ and ‘Hey Mom, Hey Dad’, touch on personal topics. How did you decide which stories and experiences to include in your music?

I don’t really make decisions on what topics I talk about, life just happens to me and I get inspired by it….and it unintentionally becomes a song!

Can you talk about how you incorporated elements of Elton John, MGMT, and ABBA into your sound on this album?

First, I was very inspired by the Elton John movie. I was crying my eyes out to his story. I didn’t want to get any influence by algorithms or trends so all I did was listen to old songs and my favorites. That made me more inspired and helped me to remember why I started to sing in the first place. Sometimes you have to go back to the beginning to find inspiration.

You’ve expressed gratitude for the people who helped bring your stories to life in the studio. Can you share a particularly meaningful moment from the recording process?

When we were starting out, we were doing a very generic pop track that I hated. I felt the pressure to deliver because I was working at Max Martin’s studio. Luckily, I showed a raw demo of Natalia that I had on my computer and people fell in love with it. I remember Max Martin running to the studio as he had gotten a call from the A&R of MXM studios that he needed to be there. He also fell in love with the track and wanted me to make an album with the team there. I got so much encouragement from that moment.

You’re set to join Tove Lo during her ‘Dirt Femme’ European tour this summer. What are you most looking forward to about performing these new songs live?

The energy that I get from these tracks is incredible. Especially songs like Run Run Run, Everything Beautiful, and The Cure.

What do you hope fans take away from listening to ‘Time Machine’?

I hope they get new energy to follow their dreams and also to be kind and gentle to themselves. And hopefully, to get inspired to do their own thing – fucking loud.

What is your FAULT?

I don’t see them as faults