Zenith Volt and his debut album, Timekeeper, sends this Hawaiian musician into a spiral of synthwave discovery with a deep admiration of eternalism. For him, now’s the time.
Link: Timekeeper on Bandcamp
Somewhere caught between space and time lies the music of Zenith Volt. The Hawaian synthwave artist looks beyond the coastal skies to fuel his action-packed electrowave and stargazing bedroom compositions.
“It caught me by accident,” he said of his discovery of synthwave. Spending most of his humanity working in bands and playing bars from a young age, it was The Midnight who changed his perspective. The visuals of the band served as awareness and opened the doors to a new community of synthwave artists who felt the same passion as Zenith Volt.
I did not want to recreate something,” he said. “It’s funny because when I saw stuff that had that retro aesthetic and feel, it tugged on my own nostalgia. But I looked ahead and used the core foundation as a toolbox to make new music.” Loops and patches served as a rabbit hole, the thick verby pads and arpeggios underneath a canopy of Casio and Yamaha-style sounds fueled the project’s progression. Next thing he knew, a persona was born.
“Zenith is the point directly above your head, and a volt is a measure of electricity. You are taking this energy from wherever and filtering it through your own head. The name encapsulates how I have taken experiences from my life and what I am feeling about my surroundings. I just took that energy and funneled it into real, tangible music.”
Timekeeper is the result of this genesis. The synthwave album cruises through space with energetic power glove club bangers like “Fountains;” the synth pulses blur into a vanishing point of slick moves and expressional future pop. Complementing these motives is star-driven galaxy pop displayed on “Supercomputer.” Beats flow like waves as Zenith Volt searches his soul for the right motive, even under the guise of technology. Howard Jones would be pleased.
“Timekeeper is my fascination with time as if the timekeeper is like a superhero. It’s about the tick of the clock, that’s where I write from. People change things with the past based on what they pick up in the future. It’s ever evolving. The only thing that is real is this moment right now. Timekeeper is that moment in time.”
Zenith Volt—Galaxy Music Video
For Zenith Volt, this album is a cosmic template. We get a glimpse into a creative mind who is open to looking at the universal principles of foundational pop motives and conveying it into the context of a song. The song “Challenger” becomes an out-of-body experience and an awakening. His escape becomes our getaway. “Heartbeat” is a love letter to express the elements of humanism. It’s his personal experience that tugs at our emotional drive to empathize. “It’s just the feeling,” he sings. “That’s just the feeling of this lonely heart.” As his words burn into a fabricated synth solo, man and machine become one. “That’s just the beat of the heart,” a synecdoche to his fixation of time.
“For me, I am creating a ledger of things that otherwise would be washed away with time. I’m hoping this is one of those things. Making this album was a good lens to look through. You want to write something that’s good and catchy. It’s been a healthy way for me to get thoughts out of my head and use music as a vessel where I spent my whole life doing.
“To encapsulate this moment in time, this is how I feel right now.”