Synthwave FAQ

What is Synthwave (Music)?

Synthwave is a genre of electronic music that emerged in the late 2000s and early 2010s, influenced by 1980s pop culture, including movies, video games, and television shows. It is characterized by its use of synthesizers, drum machines, and other electronic instruments to create a nostalgic, retro sound that pays homage to the music of the 80s.

Synthwave often features a combination of pulsing basslines, atmospheric pads, and arpeggiated melodies, as well as the occasional use of vocoders or other vocal effects. The music is often accompanied by retro-futuristic artwork and visuals that are inspired by the aesthetics of the 80s.

Some of the most popular synthwave artists include Kavinsky, Mitch Murder, Com Truise, and The Midnight, among others. The genre has gained a significant following in recent years, with a growing number of festivals and events dedicated to the music, as well as a resurgence of interest in 80s-style fashion and design.

How To Make Synthwave Music

Making synthwave music requires a combination of technical skill and creative inspiration. Here are some steps to get started:

  1. Choose your tools: Synthwave is characterized by its use of electronic instruments, such as synthesizers, drum machines, and samplers. You will need to have access to these tools in order to create the music. There are many different hardware and software options available, so it’s important to choose the tools that work best for you.
  2. Create your sound: Synthwave is all about creating a retro, nostalgic sound. Experiment with different types of synthesizers, drum machines, and effects to find the sounds that work best for your music. You can also use samples from old 80s movies or video games to add a nostalgic touch to your music.
  3. Develop your melodies: Synthwave music often features catchy melodies and arpeggios that are built on top of pulsing basslines and atmospheric pads. Experiment with different chord progressions and melodies until you find something that works well.
  4. Arrange your song: Once you have your basic sounds and melodies, it’s time to arrange your song. Think about the structure of your music and how it will progress over time. Synthwave often features a buildup and breakdown, with a catchy chorus or hook that repeats throughout the song.
  5. Mix and master: Once you have your song arranged, it’s time to mix and master the track. This involves balancing the different elements of the music and adding effects to enhance the sound. You may want to work with a mixing and mastering engineer to help you achieve the best possible sound.

Remember, making synthwave music is a creative process, so don’t be afraid to experiment and try new things. With time and practice, you can develop your own unique sound and style within the genre.

Why is Synthwave so good?

The appeal of synthwave music lies in its nostalgic and atmospheric sound that evokes memories of the 1980s, an era that is often associated with pop culture, neon lights, and sci-fi movies. Synthwave music often features catchy melodies, pulsing basslines, and atmospheric pads, creating a sound that is both retro and modern at the same time.

Many people find the music to be highly evocative, transporting them to a different time and place. The music can also be highly emotional, with many synthwave tracks featuring a sense of longing or nostalgia. The music is often used in movies, video games, and other media to create a sense of atmosphere or mood.

In addition, the production techniques used in synthwave music can be quite impressive, with producers using a range of analog and digital instruments to create a unique sound. Many synthwave producers also incorporate visual elements, such as retro-futuristic artwork or music videos, which further enhance the experience.

Overall, the appeal of synthwave music lies in its ability to transport the listener to a different time and place, while also creating a unique and modern sound that is highly engaging and enjoyable to listen to.

Who invented Synthwave?

Synthwave is a genre of electronic music that emerged in the late 2000s and early 2010s, inspired by the sounds of the 1980s. While there is no single individual who can be credited with “inventing” synthwave, there were several artists and groups who helped to popularize the genre and define its sound.

One of the earliest and most influential synthwave artists was French producer Kavinsky, who gained widespread recognition with his 2010 album “OutRun” and the hit single “Nightcall,” which was featured in the movie “Drive.” Another important figure in the development of the genre was the Swedish producer Mitch Murder, who helped to popularize the use of retro synths and drum machines in modern music.

Other notable synthwave artists who helped to define the genre include Com Truise, FM-84, The Midnight, and Timecop1983, among others. These artists, along with many others, have contributed to the growth and popularity of synthwave music, which has become a widely recognized and respected genre in the electronic music scene.

What bpm is synthwave?

Synthwave is a genre of electronic music that can vary in tempo and BPM (beats per minute), but typically falls within the range of 80-130 BPM. The tempo can vary depending on the specific sub-genre of synthwave or the mood the artist is trying to convey. Some sub-genres, such as dark synthwave or horror synth, may have a slower tempo, while others, such as future funk or synthpop, may have a faster tempo.

In general, many synthwave tracks have a mid-tempo feel, with a tempo range of around 100-120 BPM. This tempo range allows for the pulsing basslines, atmospheric pads, and arpeggiated melodies that are characteristic of the genre. However, there is no hard and fast rule for the tempo of synthwave music, and artists are free to experiment and create their own unique sounds and styles within the genre.

Is there Synthwave Music from Vanterra Arts?

You’re lucky. Partly. While Waikiki Synth is not a Synthwave music album per se, it does feature a couple of tracks that are somewhat Synthwave-ish. Find it out yourself and listen to the album on Spotify.