The new album “W,” for women, is Populous’ tribute to free and diverse feminine musical imagery. Inspired by women who sing, write, compose and play and for Populous are both icons and friends, hai from Italy, Japan, Argentina, Brazil and Mexico. “W” is also a celebration of femininity beyond stereotypes, less defined by gender rather a common uniqueness that is the perfect response to the uniformity imposed by the machismo still reigning in the music industry. With the new album, Populous has opened up about his queer identity, making his first queer-identifying musical statement. From songs to artwork, he has created a visual manifesto to present feminine musical imagery. The artwork was conceived together with Nicola Napoli (a digital artist in Berlin’s queer scene) it is, in Populous’ own words, the representation of “a utopian party we would have done anything to be invited to.” An eclectic crossover party, improbable yet coherent, where you’d meet Grace Jones and Missy Elliott, Loredana Berte and RuPaul, Aaliyha and Amanda Lear, Beth Ditto and Divine while dancing to shamanic house, digital cumbia, vogue beat and glitch electronica. Populous is accompanied on each track by the independent artists he admires most: Sobrenadar, Kaleema, Sotomayor, Emmanuelle, Barda, Weste, Cuushe and the Italian M¥SS KETA, L I M, Matilde Davoli and Lucia Manca. Collaborations born of discovering one’s sexual freedom, from perpetual motion, from constant traveling, physical and musical. With a background in musicology, Populous is known for his global approach to music-making. He has always been interested in disparate genres and styles of music, which is reflected in the output from the Populous project and its focus on Latin American sounds as refracted through a European lens. In 2003, Mangia made his first jaunt into the music world with the album ‘Quipo’ (via Morr Music), followed by ‘Queue For Love’ in 2005. Influenced by his reggae/hip-hop-infused surroundings (Lecce is known as Italy’s Jamaica, as reggae and dancehall are extremely popular there) he released ‘Drawn in Basic’ in 2008, which was well received by international critics, earning him a spot on the global dance music map. The 2010s have seen Mangia refine the Populous sound with albums like ‘Night Safari’ (Bad Panda Records) and ‘Azulejos’ (Wonderwheel Recordings), while also expanding his role as a sound designer for fashion houses such as Gucci, Vivienne Westwood, Isabel Marant, and Elie Saab, among others. ‘W’ releases on Wonderwheel Recordings May 22nd.