Karl is a longtime freelancer who's passionate about music, art, and writing.
“Hilt” by XENNON is the first single from his upcoming album Dark of a Distant World. The album’s going to follow the journey of a teen named Kurt as he adventures in a land called Eternicron. There’s a sense of youthful dreaminess and possibility about Hilt that speaks to the theme of the upcoming album. The soaring, bright synths along with rich melodies and XENNON’s strong singing voice create a sense of hope and new beginnings as the single develops.
Review of Hilt
The first aspect of Hilt that I want to discuss is XENNON’s lyrical and vocal abilities. The lyrics to Hilt are a strong evocation of a young man struggling against a world that wants to pull him down while he seeks new horizons. Those well-written lyrics are delivered in XENNON’s warm, strong and expressive voice that soars out through the song to deliver a punch of emotion to the listener.
XENNON is also a writer of high calibre melodies. The glowing synth melody that dances through the track bursts with light and hopeful energy and the vocal melody is similarly uplifting and full of a deep yearning for new adventures. I was charmed by the earnest quality that permeated the song.
In terms of the synths themselves on Hilt, XENNON has chosen well. The lead synth is shining and bright, there is a panpipe synth that adds an airiness to the track and the cascading, leaping solo suits that bright lead synth well.
This is a song that is full of dreams, hope and the desire for a better life. The stage is set by the lines, “Held up by a window sill, But all I wanna do is crumble on the floor. “ After this, Kurt expresses a sense of wanting to move forward in the words, “No power to climb that hill, But I know the horizon can’t be seen behind the door.”
Our young narrator is aching to escape because otherwise “this ticking time bomb in my head might detonate.” He laments that, “I’m losing too much hope, getting closer to the sun” but rallies and says, “But I’ll step outside, embrace the warmest day.”
There’s a mixture of trepidation and hope in the chorus. At first our narrator says, “I’m not sure I’m getting better, Days drag me down sometimes I’ve found” but then hope rises as he cries out, “But maybe if here, beside you I stand, With this hilt tight in my hand, I’ll take it to the other side and get out, safe and sound.”
As he emerges from darkness Kurt says, “Daylight it hurts my eyes, The air is fresh and working wonders on my soul” and he comes to the powerful realization that “I’m awake yeah I can feel it in my bones!”
Finally hope reaches a pinnacle in him as he says, “Started to climb, found a way, Seems to me the horizon’s not so far away.” Rather than being consumed by the fire that’s burning in him, he concludes, “I'll use this fuel to ignite a better day.”
Hilt is a strong way for XENNON to tease his Dark of A Distant World album. It is lyrically and vocally strong, full of wonderful melodies and earnest emotion as well as a good choice of interesting synths to convey the feeling of hope and growth elicited by the lyrics.