“This episode of Big Blend Radio features RZN8R, who discusses his debut album “Closing The Golden Gate.” RZN8R (pronounced “resonator”) is the moniker of Oakland-raised, Brooklyn-based producer and singer Derek Buckwalter. RZN8R draws from a wide array of influences, fusing his passions for singing, beats, and new thought spirituality to craft lush, deep, and hypnotic grooves. “Closing the Golden Gate” is a collection of future soul tracks with influences of Motown, boom bap hip hop, dance pop, and jazz. A heartfelt and personal piece of work, the album is about RZN8R’s departure from the San Francisco Bay Area after 27 years to move to Brooklyn. More: https://www.rzn8r.com/“
“Opening on the jazzled, stuttered rhythms and spoken word of Music to Make You Go Oooh – Intro, that is seamlessly followed by the smooth R&B, finger-snapping grooves of That’s on You (which features bassist Kaeli Earle), then comes the synth-tastic Aphrodite in Chains (which features Idea Unsound aka Kris Grant) – Interlude and the free flowing hipsway of What’s Good (featuring touring comedian Xander Beltran).
Up next on the vibrantly exciting new album is the lushly orchestrated The Window (which comes complete with a freestyle from rapper Dakota) – Interlude, which is itself backed by the heartfelt Thought of It (once again featuring comedian Xander Beltran), the new collection coming to a close on the languishing Which Way Is Up (again featuring bassist Kaeli Earle).”
“Showcases an amazing performance and brilliant songwriting talent!”
“For listeners that want the future here and now—here it is!”
CLOSING THE GOLDEN GATE was featured on the iTunes R&B/Soul Pre-Order Page the week of release!
For Immediate Release – New York, NY – RZN8R (pronounced “resonator”) is the moniker of Oakland-raised, Brooklyn-based producer and singer Derek Buckwalter. RZN8R draws from a wide array of influences, fusing his passions for singing, beats, and new thought spirituality to craft lush, deep, and hypnotic grooves. Set to release his debut album CLOSING THE GOLDEN GATE on July 1, 2022, SF Weekly says RZN8R’s music “leaves the listener feeling invigorated and inspired,” while DoTheBay says, “the expressive electronic beats and hair-raising synths pulsing from RZN8R strike a spiritual nerve.”
CLOSING THE GOLDEN GATE is a collection of future soul tracks with influences of Motown, boom bap hip hop, dance pop, and jazz. A heartfelt and personal piece of work, the album is about RZN8R’s departure from the San Francisco Bay Area after 27 years to move to Brooklyn. His girlfriend said, “if you move here, we’ll get a spot together in Bushwick and you’ll get a studio room.” An opportunity to good to resist, RZN8R constructed an environment where he could create comfortably with stage lights, lasers, galaxy lights, and a fog machine. All the material for the album was recorded in his San Francisco apartment but mixed in his new studio room in Bushwick. RZN8R had a hard time in California finishing the album, but once he moved to New York, embodied “energy code” work, and stopped drinking (no alcohol for one year now), he had the vision and clarity of mind to complete the project.
CLOSING THE GOLDEN GATE was a collaborative effort, featuring Kaeli Earle on the tracks “That’s On You” and “Which Way Is Up,” Idea Unsound (aka Kris Grant) on the track “Aphrodite in Chains,” a freestyle from rapper Dakota on the track “The Window,” and even touring comedian Xander Beltran on the tracks “What’s Good” and “Thought of It.” RZN8R worked with mixing engineer Michael Morrell at his studio apartment in Brooklyn where he has tons of outboard gear. Morrell is a longtime collaborator of super producer Sauce Samurai, who has produced for the likes of Travis Scott, Asap Rocky and Trippie Red. RZN8R also worked with mastering engineer Rossylo of the studio OTW in Fremont, CA, that has worked with Bay Area legends including G-Eazy, Mistah Fab and Capolow.
As an added musical flourish, RZN8R added layers of West African percussion and other influences to the album. In the 80s his mother went to the Ivory Coast and Ghana where she studied alternative medicine and health. She brought back boxes of drums that can now be heard throughout CLOSING THE GOLDEN GATE. Another percussion sound heard throughout the album is an alternative shaker made from Puma nails, a gift his father got for him in Peru.
With further plans to release a supplementary album of B-Sides containing other songs he started in SF and will finish his Bushwick studio called “Water Under the Bridge,” RZN8R will also soon play his first live New York set at the annual Zaneapalooza. RZN8R has played many venues in the Bay Area including 1015 Folsom, Mezzanine, Neck of the Woods, Brick & Mortar, Bottom of the Hill, The Knockout, PianoFight, Warehouse 416, Madrone Art Bar, 20 Mission, and events including Noise Pop, Sofar Sounds, Oakland Drops Beats, Now Music SF, and GlowCon, as well as SXSW in Austin. He has opened for artists including A-Trak, Chromeo, Duckwrth, Martin Luther, ATTLAS, ARMNHMR, Anamanaguchi, Monster Rally, TV Girl, and Krystyn Pixton.
With a sound will make you go “oooh,” RZN8R represents the culmination of Derek Buckwalter’s experiences with singing and music production, an outlet for his desire to seek out ways to make electronic music sound more grounded. With his new release CLOSING THE GOLDEN GATE, RZN8R is ready now to take on the Big Apple!
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