Author Archives: paulms

About paulms

My name is Paul Shapera, a musician working under the name Mocha Lab. I make albums, theater shows, videos, dance pieces, commercials and move around a lot.

Yoom Soolve Ficfuc: The Video

Because… there is no sanity.

Plus, explaining how the yam salve meme has jumped social groups is… complicated.


Posted by on September 22, 2017 in Uncategorized


The Best Concise Descriptions Of The New Albion Operas Ever Written

By Phoenix

DoNA: “a woman tries to bring her dead crush back to life, and then the butterfly effect fucks literally everyone for centuries”

NARH: “thief with daddy issues gets superpowers and makes the radio man angry”

GtAC: “Girl chases her destiny love interest but he’s gay and she’s literally every character you’ve ever loved, so she finally gives up and lets everything be a mess without her”

RBNA: “prehistoric girl travels through time to build a computer and then ODs because ‘angels’ are douchebags”

Cabaret: “This isn’t really a play, everyone’s gay and miserable and maybe nothing’s real.”

Carnival: “Imagine the genie from Aladdin, but extremely horny and existentially sad. Welcome to his special hell”

Slenderman: “The video game makes the monster show up so now a dude and a gay ghost have to find the monster’s mom and avoid death by sexually pleasuring the monster and then killing him and giving his mom some video games.”

S&F: “A newly-unemployed businessman has a mental breakdown and jumps off a cliff and gets super powers and goes into show business (and then eventually turns into Sexy Genie in the future)”

Yam Salve Song: “mmmmmmmmmm”


Posted by on September 17, 2017 in Uncategorized


An Actual Map Of New Albion With District Descriptions

At long, long last.

Turns out having an active fandom is a blessing without end. (Except when they get mischievous with their memes and shitposts, then it is truly a curse from the depths of sin and shame.)  The crew over at Discord have compiled an actual map of New Albion complete with district descriptions, mentions of where opera highlights take place and for heaven’s sake, the freaking price of fares for public transportation.

Credits are listed at the end. I will be uploading this to Bandcamp and it will be included as a bonus document with downloads of the operas. And without further ado:

Districts of New Albion

District 1: Waterfront District

The main entry point for most newcomers to the city, the docks from the Waterfront District provide a perfect look at the iconic New Albion skyline. Servicing both boats and zeppelins (until zeppelins fell out of fashion during the Tech Boom, to be replaced by skycabs), all air and water travel into and out of the city comes through here.

Most permanent residents of the Waterfront District are not too wealthy. Due to the constant influx of sailors and other travelers, District 1 often slides under the radar with regards to crime. It is not the dirtiest district in the city, but it is far from the cleanest. Most business are built to cater to travelers. There’s a dive bar on every street, often with nautical names to appeal to the sailors who keep the place running. There is limited government presence, however, as the customs office is located (as of the Atompunk Era) where the headquarters of the Zeppelin Union Pilots was once located. More than anything, though, this government presence oversees only imports and exports for the city. What goes on behind closed doors and inside rowdy taverns doesn’t really interest them. The red-haired gang has been allowed to operate with impunity here.

The District’s location, bordering only the Market District (with the exception of a small corner shared with the Business District), facilitates the moving of imports and exports to and from the shops and craftsmen of the city. This constant interaction formed a sort of bond between the two Districts, which helped to shelter the Waterfront District during the Civil War.

People and Events: Jane Cryptid built the Waterfront District, as well as the canals that run through the rest of the city.


District 2: Market District, aka Shopping District

Perhaps the most accessible district to Albionites of all walks of life, the Market District is the Gateway to the City. Built around an open-air market centuries ago, the District has grown wider and wider with the rest of the city. Shops of every sort can be found here, from grocery stores to boutiques to niche goods. The Atompunk Era saw the construction of a massive shopping center, the Shopogopolis, completely reshaping one corner of the district into a single behemoth of a mall. As the Shopping District increased in size over the years, it wasn’t rare to see shops develop into full-blown chains, appearing in multiple locations in the District, for ease of use.

The district itself caters to a wide variety of tastes. From the sleek, modern lines of the Shopogopolis, to the charming little vintage Dieselpunk-Era shops that can be found on Tin Pan Row, this is by far the most eclectic district. Shops of all price points can be found here, and if you’ve got a message you need to spread very quickly, the open-air market which still stands in the middle of the district is a good place to do it. Most of the permanent residents of this district are shop owners and craftsmen who, to this day, continue the tradition of living in flats located above their own shops. Even the Shopogopolis contains restricted-access sleeping quarters for employees and franchise managers.

Bordering the Iron District, the Green District, and the Financial District, the Market District seems to be a natural extension of all of them, the general appearance of the shops most closely resembling the district that they are closest to. The Shopogopolis was built along the border to the Financial District, matching the clean lines of the buildings built in that district during the Atompunk Era. During the Civil War, District 2’s proximity to so many other Districts and its use by everyone in the city made it a sort of neutral zone, where enemies met on the street and eyed each other warily, likely to be banned from a multitude of shops if they showed outward aggression.

People and Events: The open-air market is where Edgar McAllistair went to advertise his service during the Steampunk Era, and where he eventually built his store. Rachael also lived in this district for a while during the Atompunk Era, residing in the Shopogopolis.


District 3: Iron District, aka Industrial District

While the Waterfront District can be said to be rowdy, but still somehow charming, there is no sugar-coating the Iron District. It is a slum. Ever since the first factory was built in New Albion (a massive iron furnace), the city’s poorest residents have made their homes and their livings here. The owners of the factories (who often maintain nice private apartments within them, as well as owning property in more respectable districts) ensured that housing projects be built between and around their factories. While these housing projects have improved somewhat over the years (especially during Martial Law, as the government seized control of the housing, allowing workers to live anywhere in the District, as opposed to only in the block near their own workplace), they are still frequently neglected, due to the residents’ lack of ability to pay for various services to keep their homes in good repair. Still, anything that is made in New Albion that needs to be mass-produced is made right here.

The Iron District has always been the noisiest district in the city. The Dieselpunk-era generators beneath the city constantly hum, and each factory has its own associated noises and smells. During the Steampunk Era, steam was constantly being emitted by various smokestacks and machines in the district, limiting visibility and coating nearly every surface in the district with moisture. Most of these plants were retro-fitted with new technology after the Civil War, and as per city standards, they were all burning clean, nuclear energy as of the Atompunk Era. Despite their poverty, the people of the Iron District do find ways to entertain themselves. It isn’t rare to turn a corner and run into a potluck block party, or hear impromptu jam sessions at all hours of the night and day while walking the streets of the Iron District.

District 3 is held at the edge of the city, but many other Districts still do wrap around it. Still, due to its winding streets, territorial factory owners, and easy access to the tunnels beneath the city, it is notoriously difficult for law enforcement to actually do anything about crime in the district. The Albino Tribe has historically held prime real estate beneath the district, and trade in the sandy drug is very common here. Meanwhile, on the streets themselves, the Red-Haired Gang rules the roost, brokering in all sorts of illegal trades.

People and Events: During the Steampunk Era, a young woman named Amelia killed herself in her home in the Iron District, setting off the chain of events that eventually caused the city to fall under Martial Law. Near the generators, far below the city (and far from the Atompunk-Era monorail lines) in an unobtrusive corner of the Underground, is a hidden Room containing what is essentially a supercomputer made of antique doll parts. As of the Cyberpunk Era, the Iron District is also the home of a young woman named Shira, who runs a radio broadcasting service from a booth near the one of the generators, colloquially known as “The Bonegrind Machine. The O’Brien family also made their home in this district, with Jacqueline relocating to District 6 after the establishment of Martial Law. The home that they shared as children was inherited by John, and was destroyed during the Civil War. John relocated to a government facility in the tunnels beneath District 5, and young Constance joined her aunt in District 6.


District 4: Green District, aka The Village

The smallest District of New Albion, there are people who consider District 4 to be nothing more than an extension of (or tumor on) District 5. Still, anyone who spends any amount of time there will tell you that it has a completely different culture and aesthetic, making it difficult to legislate it as anything other than its own district. Murals cover the buildings, many of which date back to the Steampunk Era, although they’ve been retrofitted with technology, leaving marks that have created structures that seem to be from all three major eras simultaneously. Small playhouses and coffee shops dot the corners, and performance art frequently spills out of these spaces and into the streets. The district’s name comes from the garden boxes in most windows, as well as the small areas of curated parks. Many businesses in the district decorate with plants, as well, giving a more “in-touch-with-nature” vibe than the majority of the city.

The people who live here are mostly those who have decided that the rat-race of life in New Albion isn’t for them, and have decided to ply their trades as musicians, writers, actors, painters, sculptors, or any other creative profession that doesn’t quite fit under the label of “craftsman” or “scientist.” It is said that the Voodoopunk movement was born here, as the youths rebelling against New Albion society frequently met in clubs in The Village, rather than the bigger, more “establishment” clubs of the Pleasure District.

Nestled between Districts 2, 3, 5, and 6, the Green District fought hard to maintain its independence throughout the Civil War. However, that independent spirit is still with it today. Like the Market District, it is not characterized by any one level of economic success: starving artists and rich, eccentric art patrons may live in the same apartment complexes. For this reason, some uphold the Green District as a model of equality, although the truth is always a little bit more complicated than that. This District is also a safe-haven for a variety of criminal activities, and the sandy drug is always popular here.

People and Events: Voodoopunk was born in the Green District, with young people from flocking from several other districts (primarily Districts 3, 5, and 6) to partake in the movement. When the Voodoopunks were forced underground, it was the in tunnels beneath District 4 where they made their home.


District 5: Capital District, aka The District, aka Old District, aka First District, aka New Albion (name no longer in use post-Civil War)

At the heart of the city, District 5 is the center of New Albion. Wide, paved streets and tall, gleaming buildings make for a district that is visible from any other district in the city. In this district is the Monk and Gambler Memorial Park, containing a centuries-old church and a small museum, dedicated to the history and founding of New Albion. The museum is on the very spot where the legendary card game took place, and the park itself is located on Cryer’s Boulevard (where a cryer would announce new city ordinances in the days before widespread literacy), and is only a stone’s throw away from the Capitol Building, where the City Council meets to discuss the rules and regulations of the city.

This District is where most of the upper classes make their homes, and is where the laws of the city are made. Most permanent residents have some weight in New Albion politics in some form or another.This is by far the cleanest district in the city, though it is also the most tightly regulated. This District became the symbol of law and order, as well as oppression, during the days of Martial Law. Once the Civil War began, it desperately tried to maintain its own relevance. Names such as “First District” became popular during this time, although its official designation, due to its geographical location, had already been determined as “District 5.” Some even went as far as calling it “New Albion,” arguing that the other Districts were all in rebellion, and clearly no longer wished to be a part of the city-state.

While it is still the heart of the city and the place where the laws get made, as well as the district containing most of the city’s hospitals, the primary terminal for the city’s Monorail system, and the Voodoopunk Cathedral (built during Reunification, but abandoned after the ArcadiaCorp incident), the Tech Boom saw a shift in the importance of the Tech District, which, as the home base for ArcadiaCorp, temporarily eclipsed the Capital District in power and influence. After the disappearance of the entire ArcadiaCorp Board of Directors, as well as the majority of its employees, District 5 was restored to its former status.

People and Events: Cryer’s Boulevard was, until the instating of Martial Law, a fairly common place for political activism, including Byron McAllistair’s infamous Voodoopunk rallies. Legions of Voodoopunks would parade from their favored clubs in District 4 all the way to Cryer’s Boulevard for these events. It was in the Capital District where the McAllistair family made their home, from Edgar’s rise to fortune until the Martyrdom of St. Priscilla. While that house was torn down during the Civil War, there were attempts to rebuild and restore it made by the Voodoopunk Church after the Reunification. As “Inanna,” Constance O’Brien would eventually come to the Capital District. This District was also the home of Connor and Lee Morgan, and where Rachael would spend 2 years in an asylum.


District 6: Financial District, aka Business District

If District 5 is where the laws get made in New Albion, District 6 is where the money gets made. This is the other upper-class district in New Albion, although not quite as closely-regulated or as conservative. Office buildings predominate this district, and many large business in other districts, including the factories of District 3, maintain a presence here.

Most of the permanent residents of this district are involved in business, whether they are simple bean counters or CEOs of major corporations. For this reason, while it is considered to be one of the upper-class districts, it does have a considerably larger middle-class population than District 5. It is known for its lovely parks by the side of the canal, as well.

Curled around District 5, those with a poetic bent say that the Business District forms a ghastly mirror with District 3 on the Capital District’s other side. For the money to continue flowing into the Financial District, people must suffer in the Iron District. Mostly, though, this is just where the financial buildings happened to be built up, on the other side of the governmental buildings from the factories. Still, it is rather neat how Districts 3 and 4 form the other set of brackets, holding District 5 in place away from the Market District. It is these four districts that form the majority of the New Albion city skyline, as viewed from the docks.

People and Events: A young man named Jasper once lived here with his family, including his young daughter, Fay. Constance O’Brien also grew up in the Financial District, raised by her Aunt Jackie.

District 7: Tech District, aka Science District, aka Inventor’s District (name no longer in use post-Martial Law)

District 7 has not changed as much over the years as its various names would suggest. It was always a place for science, technology, and education. The names merely reflect the changing language used to describe these goals. During the Dieselpunk Era, generators were built under this district (as well as under the Iron District and Pleasure District, wrapping around this end of the city and skirting District 5 to avoid noise pollution there), to facilitate the large power output of many of the laboratories here.

The Inventor’s District in the Steampunk Era, much like the Iron District, usually featured dramatically-lowered visibility, as many of the inventions being produced required a vast amount of steam. Some neighborhoods did not suffer from this as much, however. The Botanists’ Lodge had a greenhouse that took up nearly an entire block by itself, containing specimens of all sorts of rare plants, including unique cultivars. The Alchemist’s Lodge also did not produce too much steam, and while alchemy has fallen out of favor over the years, the efforts of those early chemists has lived on in the current business to stand in that place: Ashland Street Pharmaceuticals.

The district changed very rapidly after Martial Law was declared, and the name of the district was forcibly changed to the Science District, to take the focus off of individual inventors (including Annabel McAllistair, whose discovery of technology that brought dead people back to life as mechanical constructs had caused the riots in the first place), and place it back on science and advancement as a whole. After Reunification, scientists stopped focusing on the realities of the Civil War and began dreaming once again, leading to the rapid developments of the Tech Boom, as well as the discovery of clean nuclear power. The colloquial name for the district changed again at this point, as people associated this blossoming of technology with the district that made it all possible.

People and Events: Annabel McAllistair lived and worked in the Inventor’s District until her death. During the Tech Boom, this district was also home to ArcadiaCorp, making it the new center of Voodoopunk activity in the city. The president of ArcadiaCorp at the time of the Voodoopunk’s Ascension, Amber, lived her with her son, Adrian. It is also the location of many different educational facilities, including Miss Idle’s Home for Orphaned Girls.


District 8: Pleasure District, aka Entertainment District

The farthest district from the river, the Pleasure District has the smallest population of any of New Albion’s districts, despite its large geographic area. Most tourists to the city, when they are not shopping in District 2, board a monorail or skycab and make a bee-line for District 8, the district that never sleeps.

From theaters and zoos to sports arenas and New Albion’s own “red light district,” from lavish resorts to the original, beloved amusement park that has stood in the same spot since the Steampunk Era, fun for all ages can be in District 8. Much like Districts 2 and 3, most permanent residents of the district are those who make their livelihoods here, including professional athletes, prostitutes, and actors, just to name a few. There is also a generalized center of operation for city maintenance crews, who work throughout the city and use the servitor tunnels to quickly get wherever they need to go. Nightclubs of varying descriptions can be found on every street, and many of the resorts capitalize on incredible views of the mountains, or the farmlands on the outskirts of New Albion. While they may not be as highly-regarded as the resorts along the Tusian Coast, wealthy patrons from faraway cities like Victoria (later Avalon) “simply adore” their proximity to the constant excitement of New Albion.

The sights and sounds and smells of the district are usually distraction enough that most pleasure-seekers don’t even notice the constant hum of the generators that lie under this district, powering most of the fun that happens here. While the generators do provide power to the entire city, the three districts that need it most get the lion’s share of the power.

People and Places: District 8 has always been a popular place for couples. Annabel McAllistair spent plenty of time in this district with her doll, Jasper. It was also at a nice restaurant in the Pleasure District that Fay broke up with Edgar McAllistair. Jackie O’Brien and Dorothy could also be found here rather frequently (when they weren’t enjoying the cozier attractions in District 4).


The Tunnels Beneath New Albion:

The tunnels are an elaborate maze of all sorts of corridors and winding subterranean roads that spans the entirety of the city, as well as areas outside of the city limits. Rather than being one large, pre-planned structure, the tunnel system under New Albion grew in a variety of directions and from a variety of sources. Under what is now the Iron District, the Albino Tribe (the original inhabitants of the land where New Albion was built) built a series of tunnels so that they could continue living in their own territory. Eventually, during the Steampunk Era, the city built a series of servitor tunnels to allow work crews to quickly and effectively move from one district to another without disrupting city life. Meanwhile, an Albino woman named Alice was building something else under the city, a Room that wouldn’t have a purpose until decades after its construction.

These two series of tunnels inevitably met, and during the Dieselpunk Era, they were expanded even further to create the generators under Districts 3, 7, and 8. The ceilings of these chambers were heavily reinforced, and to this day, the city keeps a careful eye on these patches, and is quick to handle any outages caused by rare leaks from the canal system. During this time period, the Voodoopunks were also living in the tunnels underneath New Albion (specifically, those beneath District 4).

During the Tech Boom, many tunnels were re-directed and re-built to become the subterranean stretches of the Monorail line, further complicating the twisting maze of tunnels beneath the city. To this day, they are an important part of the city, and are full of untold mysteries.

The Monorail Line:

Built during the Tech Boom, the Monorail is the easiest and fastest way to get from Point A to Point B in New Albion. Centered in District 5, each Line has its own purpose in the city. Line A makes a full circuit around the city, stopping at least once in each of the eight districts. Line B is a sort of commuter line, stopping at the most heavily-trafficked stops in the city in Districts 3, 4, 5, and 6. Line C is a longer, more commercially-focused line preferred by out-of-towners, and is the only line that leaves the confines of the city itself, with a stop at the train station on the outskirts of town.

The Monorail was built to replace other, slower forms of transit throughout the city, especially the Steampunk-era trolley system. While District 8 still maintains its historical trolley to the delight of tourists, it is the only district to do so. The Monorail is also known as the Subway system, as it runs underground as well as on elevated rails, to better navigate all of the different nerve centers of the city.

Visitors to the Shopogopolis have, for years, delighted in the Monorail Tunnel, a massive glass structure that passes through a large portion of the building, high above shoppers and visible from many of the mall’s interior plazas. Line A passes through this tunnel, as the Shopogopolis was built at the same time as the Line A rail.

Map Of New Albion Sarah De Buck

Public Transit Fares
Number of Stops Trolley Fare (Steampunk Era) Trolley Fare (Dieselpunk Era) Monorail Fare (Atompunk Era)
1 2 L 16 L 32 L
2 4 L 32 L 64 L
3 7 L 60 L 120 L
4 9 L 72 L 144 L
5 10 L 80 L 160 L
6 12 L 96 L 192 L
7 14 L 112 L 224 L
8 16 L 144 L 256 L
Day Ticket 12 L 96 L 192 L
Round Trip 10 L 80 L 160 L


Cartographer: Sarah De Buck
District Development: Phoenix Bryant
Transit Fares: Kai, Taliesin Ladd
New Albion Planning Committee: Gabriella Marie Hall, Fishorse, Hannah Javens, Lia Gastaldi, Abigail Maus, Catbot, Supreme Leader Nathan, nopeitsKai (Kai Abis), Jane Cronin-Scott


Posted by on September 6, 2017 in Uncategorized


Uncle Raven’s Super Happy Funtime Carnival Out On iTunes (Plus, Sam the Mouse!)

Cover for Uncle Raven's Super Happy Funtime Carnival by Paul Shapera

I probably should have announced this a couple weeks ago, but for those of you who prefer to download your music from sources other than Bandcamp, like iTunes and Amazon, what has oddly become my 2nd most popular album of all (sans Dolls) is now out everywhere else. Including Spotify and Deezer and others of that ilk. Hey, iTunes even priced it at a reasonable price. Good for you, Apple.



As an extra bonus, for those of you who check this blog but would find today’s itunes announcement to be unexciting and not enough to perk up your dreary day as is my duty, here is a drawing of Simon the Albatross and Sam the mouse by Vadvivon over at deviant art (

Sam the mouse simon the albatross paul shapera vadvivon dolls of new albion

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Posted by on September 5, 2017 in Uncategorized


New Albion Merchandise Out Now!

Yes, at last we have merchandise for New Albion. Posters, T-shirts, even a mug.Head here:

New Albion Steampunk Era

The Raven body pillow is indeed happening and is on the way, but let me first get my bearings with this bit.




Posted by on September 2, 2017 in Uncategorized


The Problem With Lloyd Allen

Me: Listen to me, Lloyd cannot be touched. He only works if he is utilized as little as humanly possible. I really liked him in the radio hour and his entire mystique can be utterly ruined by using him much more, if any, than that.

Also me: So yeah, i’ve written a 5,000 word batshit crazy back story that covers him from before he met Raven to present day, called The Ballad Of Lloyd Allen because… it.. just… happened…


Posted by on September 1, 2017 in Uncategorized


My Wonderful Letter From Cassandra

I get emails from fans (which i love). I get IMs and messages on FB. I’ve even gotten to meet a few in person (my favorite). You do not WANT to know the horrifying shenanigans they get up to on the New Albion fandom serve on Discord. You know what i’ve never gotten? An actual physical letter. With art. Sent by honest to god snail mail to my god forsaken house in the boondocks of the balkans. Not even on my birthday (Sept 25th). Until now.

Cassandra Griffith, Cassie, sent me 4 pages of art along with a beautiful letter. I’ll show you the art. The letter is private. But let me assure all would be ruffians and heartbreakers: i love Cassie, she is the official best friend of Sonmi growing up (Boom. Canon.) and if anyone out there ever messes with her, think of me as her personal Uncle Raven with a knife collection. I will gut you while singing showtune medleys.

Thank you, Cassie. You’re awesome and i don’t deserve you.



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Posted by on August 31, 2017 in Uncategorized