Enigmatic lo-fi master KIT HEPBURN has announced his hazy new single Left Alone, an entirely self-produced track that draws upon ambient soundscapes and R&B elements, and feels particularly representative of the shutdown the world experienced in 2020 due to COVID-19. The dark, brooding song is accompanied by an appropriately moody video clip, made in collaboration with filmmaker Lucas Haynes. Left Alone really does feel like an auditory response to the isolation and loneliness experienced by millions during the coronavirus lockdowns across the globe. Gentle electric piano and dreamy beats push this song forward with slow assertion, as KIT HEPBURN’s voice floats dreamily amongst the atmosphere. Exploring heartache and the desire for closeness whilst feeling adrift in a relationship, Kit Hepburn offers insights into the inspiration behind the song.
How has the build-up been leading up to the release of the single?
It’s been a lot of fun! – I’ve been planning for release since late last year, and it’s definitely the biggest release I’ve ever put out. This was also my first time shooting a music video, which took a lot of planning but was so satisfying to see the finished product. I was pretty specific how I wanted everything to look aesthetically for the release, from logos, to press shots to music video; I wanted everything to reflect the sound and feel of the track. I had no idea how the track and video would be received, but there’s something really exciting about taking a leap and seeing what comes. The response so far has been next level!!
Was the process of making your single as challenging as you thought?
It definitely ebbed and flowed! I had made part of the instrumental before I had written the song, and I had gotten stuck at some point and put it aside for ages. Then I came across it again by accident and stayed up all night tinkering with it. The song structure and lyrics came out all in one sitting that night. I find that the best stuff I make often happens like that.
From there I spent a long time over a couple weeks getting the mix and master just right which can be painstaking; when you’ve listened to the same eight bars of a song like a hundred times your ears can definitely get confused! But overall it was a really fun and rewarding process.
Sonically, how would you describe your music?
I’d describe my music sonically as a hazy mix of electronic, lo-fi, indie and R&B influences. It’s nostalgic, sometimes melancholic and super chill for the most part.
Who would you consider to be the biggest influence on your music and why?
It’s hard to name one artist as my biggest influence, as I’m inspired and influenced by new sounds all the time. If I had to pick one though, I’d probably say the music of Radiohead has had one of the biggest impacts on me musically. Listening to their music as a teenager really shaped my taste and ear – especially when it comes to establishing mood and atmosphere. Listening to Radiohead also took me down a rabbit hole, taking me out of my comfort zone and introducing me to a whole range of other sounds and artists!
Best piece of advice you have been given?
“Don’t wait for permission”. This was a big one for me as an artist and a person. Life is short and always uncertain, I think we should do and be the truest versions of ourselves that we can, without waiting for someone else to tell us we’re allowed to.
What is the Kit Hepburn life story?
I’ll give you the short version. My real name is Zac Kazepis. I’m an only child, and I grew up in a tiny country town in rural Victoria – I never liked school, but luckily my parents are both artists so I was always exposed to a lot of cool stuff outside of class. When I got to high school after a rough couple years I decided pretty adamantly that I wanted to pursue a career in acting and music, and pretty much jumped head first into that world. taught myself how to play piano and produce, and I commuted for years to Melbourne chasing acting gigs and music opportunities. I spent a lot of nights missing the last train home and being stranded in the city with not much money (one night in particular I staked out all night at famed twenty four hour Greek restaurant Stalactites ordering bowls of olives so I could avoid the freezing conditions outside). As fun as those days were I luckily live in the city now, working as an actor and musician and avoiding olives at all costs.
Are you looking to tour more broadly?
Definitely. I’m currently in the process of putting together a new live show with a whole new setlist, and I’m really excited to start playing gigs. I want to create something really special with my live shows.
What’s next for Kit Hepburn?
Aside from getting ready to play shows, I’ve got an EP in the works that’s 90% finished that I’m planning to drop later in the year. It’s the most ambitious work I’ve done, and am so keen to get it out into the world so stay tuned! There’s heaps coming real soon.
Interview By Rob Lyon