Last week one of my fave producer ever, Federico Franchi aka Zenith passed away. For me was an hard blow.
Not only because I loved his stuff but also coz he had my age…
With this post I want to say goodbye to him and write, for the sake of new generations, how important was Federico for the development of music. A massive underated artist outside its niches.
Rip Zenith – Rip Federico Franchi. In Memoriam
1989-1995: The hidden Ambient years
I remember I wrote him (and asked live) to release more “Flower of Intelligence” styled music. His reply was: “I ve a load of Old stuff that sound like that and you will probably enjoy”.
It was released only 2007, when the hype was down. I got it on Amazon a couple of year after. it s still Worth it!
Listen to Zenith – Midnight
Zenith – Piper Of Illusion – His first release was a solid early 90 trance. Also kinda clichè, and did not get too much attention. But at the time Federico was only 19 years old.
1994: Starting Trance Communication Records
He starts his own label: Trance Communication and I guess most of its early releases have a strong part of Federico’s genius behind.
- Introspektiv Audiosphere ( Federico Franchi, Gianluigi Di Costanzo) has all the seed of what will become “the sound of Zenith”
- Pro Digital
Introspektiv Audiosphere – Xperika (Exerph 2)
1995: The first GREAT year for Zenith
It was the first of a series of great year for zenith. Not only he produced some great stuff as Vana Imago & Shadow Dancers, but also release an album with Lukas and Dj Cirillo (two huge name at the time) which has a track called “Trance communication” which is is the seed of his second phase (and probably his peak as producer): Hard trance
- Zenith – Amenthia
- Zenith & Valez – Aural
- Vana Imago – Tesi
He also release as Vana Imago an Impressive record on his own Trance Communication. 3 Tracks, three super armonic trip to listen to. Released also on Belgian label Diki.
- Shadow Dancers – Silicium Head
Side A is a Beautiful track done with Biagio Lana. B side (Hard Nova) is less memorable, but still a good track – Record released also on Bonzai rec.
Vana Imago – Tesi
Vana Imago – AntiTesi
Vana Imago – Sintesi
Shadow Dancers – Silicium Head
Shadow Dancers – Hard Nova
1996: Hard Trance God is Revealed
1996 was the year that the world recognized what a fucking Genius Federico Franchi was: His releases on ISR, his Alternative creator Project, and a million other things left a mark, still unbeaten today.
- Lets start with his master piece: Flower of Intelligence on ISR – I label it hard trance, but it’s clearly wrong. It s “industrial dark hard trance /intelligent ambient Hardcore” – basically a genre he create and he only produced (if there is something similiar I am happy to hear it – post title in the comment section please).
- Zenith – Human Will is a bit less “complex” than than ISR 17, but is another gem: Trance Communication Remix was often played to open set, and Paradise City is simply a track you love to dance to!
- Zenith – Psycho Motion is, in my opinion kinda shitty compared to other stuff by him, and i guess that most of the work has been done by other people and Zenith just added his name on it. Probably Ipnotika rec paid some good money to have Zenith on this release. You can listen to it below. For his Hardstyle fans: this is a hardbass / proto-hardstyle track.
- The Alternative Creators – Sound Creation – Zenith, Prezioso and Mario di Giacomo created this woderful project: Main version for the Radio (Prezioso is a nationa Radio Dj), Hardtrance by Zenith, Hardcore by Stunned guys.
- The Alternative Creators – The Beast. Second release of the Alternative Creators and this is even harder: no radio version, but two club / rave version. In this release you can hear Federico’s hand in all trackz (but the hardcore, which is very good by itself) – below i ll embed only the pure Zenith mix, but browse for the other versions (on Discogs there are all four)
Listen to Zenith – Flowers Of Intelligence
Listen to zenith – Streets of avalon
Listen to Zenith – A Green Allucinated Mushrooms
Listen to Zenith – Trance Communication Rmx
Listen to Zenith – Paradise City
Listen to Zenith – Psycho Motion E.P.
Listen to The Alternative Creators Sound Creation Hardtrance version
Listen to The Alternative Creators – The Beast (Hardhypno Vrs.)
1997: King of two crowds
This was a strange year. Zenith was enjoying his well deserved status as famous dj, playing a lot around, mixing the Energy Compilation and doing some more easy stuff. On the other side he kept on pushing his darker side.
- Zenith – Emotion
Exclusive on the Energy 97 Compilation is a Okish, but has some vocal which sound too much house for my taste.
- Sonar Impulse aka Zenith & Moratto – The Door To Eternity
Nice progressive trance track done with a famous italian italo dance producer. It’s produced with the radio in mind (remember how huge was trance in mid 90s?) so it featured a singed part. Never the less I still like it.
This track has been remixed modified many times, so it’s likely you know it.
- Remix for Prezioso – Rise your power
Prezioso is a famous name in euro dance scene. His roots lies in early techno (he used to dress a “mokum” hat), when he wanted hard remix he usually asked to Stunned Guys and Zenith.
Listen to Zenith Elektronic Death
Listen to it… technoish intro and then a main theme that is so Zenith
Sonar Impulse aka Zenith & Moratto – The Door To Eternity
Zenith – Emotion
Audio of Prezioso – Raise Your Power (Hardhypno Vrs. Zenith)
1998: Cashing The cow
- Trance Junkies – lost in paradise
This track was enjoyable but kinda useless
Listen to Trance Junkies – lost in paradise
1999: New Directions
- Trance Nation – The Future Of House