Hi Federico, what part of the world are you currently based, and what’s the electronic music scene like in your local area?
I keep jumping between Ibiza and Florence, I’m in the Tuscan countryside right now, as that’s where I set the studio up this winter, it’s good to have so much nature around when I walk out after work. You all know about the club scene in Ibiza, regarding Italy, it’s in a transition moment, but I’m very confident, because I see it as a renaissance. Most of the big clubs that we used to have in the past, have recently not had their best moments, as habits of the crowd have changed. More and more festivals took their audience, but at the same time, new small very interesting clubs are coming up, places where you can do quality music with no compromises.
I’ve been aware of your music for a while, but recently heard your new EP on Snatch! Records and wanted to find out a bit more about the release. Could you describe the tracks for our readers?
I’ll be happy to do it; every track has its own story. Yellow was born during a studio experiment, I love to play around to create different routing chains, in this case I was plugging different FX pedals into the Roland SH101, until this particular sound came out. It reminded me of the hook sound from Josh Wink’s Superfreak (a masterpiece for my taste). I was literally kidnapped by it, and it was incredibly fast to write a simple melody on top of the 909 drumline, then the rest came naturally by itself.
The idea of Dance Floor was born during a long stopover in an airport when I was coming back from a gig. I was listening to funk classics, as I often do, and I had the idea to create this breakbeat. I decided to keep it quite empty to save the body shake feeling that was created when the breakbeat and bassline played together.
I remember that when I opened the Get Over project in the studio, the idea of the track was already more than clear. It became a collaboration because me and Riva Starr were talking about the potential of some stuff I previously made, and we decided to develop it together, the work Riva did in the arrangement turned it into a dance floor weapon!
In my own opinion, I could hear the classic sound of Chicago in the tracks. Would you say this is a fair assessment, and who are the artists who most inspire you?
This is something that I often ask to myself too. I’m naturally curious, I’ve always been interested in different music movements, but for sure the American one has always been present, so you are definitely right. When I was a kid I used to go dancing in clubs where Frankie Knuckles was playing, it shaped my taste, but I wasn’t strict in my choices, lots of techno artists were also catching my attention at the same time. This melting pot made me what I am.
As you mentioned, there is also a collaboration with Snatch! Records label owner Riva Starr. How do you guys know each other, and what influence did he have on the collaboration?
The transposition of classic house music into the modern sound is the key part of our collaboration, since my first quick chat with Riva we set the target, and we moved straight to the point, so it’s been very natural to collaborate.
Staying on the subject of your collaboration with Riva Starr, it also features the vocal talents of Robert Owens who has added lyrics to many iconic records. What was it like working with Robert, and did the vocal come before the backing track or vice versa?
The track was nearly ready when Riva told me that we had the chance to have Robert work with us, for me it’s been a pleasure and an honour to have his voice on the song, and it took its name from his lyrics. I’ve been a fan of Robert Owens for a very long time, and I still can’t believe it when I see his name on the artwork of the release.
You have worked with many other labels outside of Snatch! Records, and I wondered what’s next in your schedule after this release hits stores?
I’ve got two parallel projects that are finally ready, one of them is a 9-track album, and the other one is a very interesting EP. I’ve worked on those for the last year, alongside two friends/artists that I really respect. I can’t wait to share more information about it, but for now they are secret! My next solo EP is also ready, I never take a break from the studio, as it’s my happy place.
Before we wrap up this chat, is there anything else you would like to add?
Don’t stop supporting the club scene! We all love big festivals, but clubs are where everything comes from, and I still love the intimate atmosphere of dark sweaty rooms.
Federico Grazzini’s Get Over EP is out now on Snatch! Records.