Born and raised in Russia and now based in Los Angeles, up and coming artist ALYA drops off her new single “Puppet Strings” currently available via all digital streaming platforms. For fans of Bjork, Madonna, Sade, and Massive Attack – ALYA is a woman of many artistic trades including being a professionally trained ballet dancer and piano player. “Puppet Strings” is the second release for ALYA from her upcoming debut albums dropping soon. One album will be in English and the second being in Japanese including original stylistic mash-ups of modern pop, Japanese folk, trip-hop, electronica, 60s surf rock, jazz, and classical music. A breath of fresh air musically and definitely highly experimental, ALYA’s music is for anyone who is looking for a break from the norm of standard Pop Radio programming and mindless love songs being shoved down our throats.
Stream her brand new single “Puppet Strings” below and also get to know ALYA more in a rare and in-depth interview on her latest release.
BONUS: ALYA is currently participating for the Independent Music Awards and can be voted for here.
When you listen to Alya’s music, you know she has a story. You can hear it in her sound — Alya boldly combines diverse genres with the authority of experience and the discipline of an expansive and well-trained mind. She’s fluent in four languages, a classically trained singer and ballet dancer, a visual artist, a performance artist, and a self-taught painter.
The short version of Alya’s story starts when she was born and raised in Russia. She wanted to be a singer from the time she was small and excelled in music school as well as at a school for gifted children. When it was time for college, Alya’s parents pressured her to abandon music to pursue a more pragmatic career, and she dutifully enrolled in the journalism program at Moscow State University. Not surprisingly, she excelled as a student.
Alya’s career as a journalist took off from the start. She kept herself centered by writing songs in Japanese and creating her first musical project, Japanica. It kept her creatively engaged – she fused modern pop and traditional Japanese melodies, and explored ancient and exotic Asian themes. She discovered that she was more interested in collaboration than she was in working alone, and began to put together a group of talented people. She was involved in every aspect of the project, not just the music, but the whole concept, the visuals and the story.
As Alya spent her off-hours making music, she reported on business, politics, and the military as a journalist. She was a special correspondent for the largest state news agency, RIA Novosti and then the national anchor at VESTI, where she covered domestic and international news. She later used her expertise as a journalist to work in public relations as the spokesperson for the vice chairman of a State legislative body in the ruling assembly of Russia.
Despite her success, though, Alya was conflicted and unhappy. She felt like she was living a dishonest life – a life that was difficult to be proud of — because she wasn’t pursuing music. She agonized over the decision, but in 2012, much to her family’s chagrin, Alya left her career behind to devote herself full-time to music.
By 2014, she’d transformed. She got married, moved to Los Angeles, and began working with a producer, David J. Holman. She combined what she’d learned with the talents she was born with, and ready at last, she began to create Alya, the performer. (She doesn’t consider herself a solo artist; she directs the project, but Alya’s music, visuals, and performances are collaborative by design.)
Two versions of Alya’s debut album are finally on the horizon; one is in English, and the other is mainly in Japanese. Both are mash-ups of modern pop, Japanese folk, trip hop, electronica, 60s surf rock, jazz and classical music. The albums are complex but accessible, smoky and sophisticated, eerily familiar but entirely new. They’re the next chapters in Alya’s story, and her story keeps getting better.