As someone who’s recently moved to Berlin from London, writing about Secretsundaze makes me feel incredibly homesick. As a Londoner, part of the dance music community, Secretsundaze is your go-to label and party. It’s a promoter you’re introduced to very early on by your friends, waiting for each bank holiday to come around the corner and be amazed at the brilliant lineups they consistently curate. The atmosphere at their Sunday parties is like no other in London, there’s a real family spirit as generations of ravers come together to enjoy the breadth of music that’s on offer, whilst the sun beams through the vast windows at Oval Space, past the now iconic disused gas cylinder.
Launching in 2002, Secretsundaze doesn’t focus on trends, instead, they mix local talent with international tastemakers to create a billing where the sonic landscape of the party will drift through old and new. They have their key players for the party such as Floating Points, Carista, Fred P, Marcellus Pittman, Charlie Bones and Tokyo Fantasy. Secretsundaze are also one of the few parties left in London where people will attend to see the residents, as co-founders Giles Smith and James Priestly are two of the sickest selectors in town.
Alongside the party, Secretsundaze is also an acclaimed record label which launched in 2007 with a string of mix CD compilations. They have since released the likes of Shanti Celeste, Palms Trax, DJ Slyngshot, Fred P, Brawther, DJ Qu and Youandewan.
With a party at Pikes and their 18th birthday celebration at Oval Space coming up, Giles and James select some of the key tracks linked to Secretsundaze.
Sivey – No Body Else (CoOp Records)
New broken stuff from where else but London town. Great to see the CoOp crew back in action. These guys have always been a big influence on us.
A Band Called Flash – Mother Confessor
Such a tune. Kinda shit that you imagine Larry Levan would bust out at the garage if it was still going today. Could have been made anytime in the last 30 years really, has that timeless sound. Ron Trent helped with the production on this no less! Real gem from a few years back.
Anette – Dream 17
Old Hacienda classic that definitely fits with the dreamy, Balearic vibe. Beautiful, deep and a little bit of acieeed!
Larry Heard – Burnin For Love
Had to be a Larry Heard track in here – along with Ron Trent one of the OG house teachers.
Soofle – How Do You Plead (Fragile)
That timeless atmospheric Detroit schizzle that you can’t get sick of!
Ron Trent and Chez Damier – Morning Factory
The best house track of all time? So psychedelic and mesmerizing. I used this as the closing track on Secretsundaze Volume 2 back in 2009.
Ignition – Love Is War
Our friend’s band remixed to perfection by Chicken Lips. Secretsundaze anthem from back in the day. 2002. Still fresh and playing again in our sets.
DJ Qu – Picazon (Strenght Music)
Qu always comes with some heat. Still beatin’ this in our sets. Tribal, voodoo shit!
Dego – Twelve Steps (Neroli)
You can’t go wrong with Dego and Neroli! Dego has been an influence since way back with his 4hero material which we were both big fans of and are to the present day….
Kai Alce – Dirty South (FXHE)
Incredibly raw but hypnotising percussive track by Kai. Been in our box for time! Heavy! Those heavy drums are something we draw on and inspire us.
Catch Secretsundaze at Pikes on 14th July and at Oval Space, London on 24th August for their 18th Birthday. Their ‘Stand Up EP’ drops on Secrestsundaze, 12th July.