Secret Selector Selections #52: Rasmus Schack

This is the end, my only friend, the end

Welcome to the last ever secret selector selection!

Or, at least for now. We've been going for 52 weeks, which means a year, and for various reasons, it feels like a good time to call it a day. Not least because my new project, Pattern Abuse is about to roll out, and doing both things is a bit too time consuming. But that's a good thing!

I don't quite know if I'll keep doing some sporadic secret selections or if I'll just close up shop and maybe start something new when I get a good idea. Five Friday Favorites. Or, crazy idea, maybe something without an alliteration. We'll see.

But stay in touch - big tings a gwan this next month and in the new year!

It's been amazing, doing secret selections every week. Really fun. And man have I (and hopefully, you) discovered a lot of dope new and old music. 270 tracks, as far as I can count. 270 tracks selected by incredibly competent people, where I said "the tracks must be great and preferably a bit secret". Proper goldmine!

It's also been inspirational to read how much love each and every selector has felt for the music. How the chosen tracks really have changed their lives. In that regards, Rasmus Schack is absolutely no exception.



He's one of those DJ/promoters where listing credentials just seems pointless, because he's been so busy for such a long time. But above and beyond the whole "played here and there, residencies in Brazil, clubs in Denmark bla bla" thing, one of
Schack's greatest credentials is an aura of true love. For the music, the culture and life, as is clear when you read his own introduction.

So I'm happy to give the last word in secret selector selections to this eclectic badboy. Ras Schack!
Push button:

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Secret Selector Selections #51: Le Gammeltoft

The Sound of Lepenhagen

Le is the first lady of dance music in Denmark.

DJing, running our national radio club music show Unga Bunga and managing the label Sound of Copenhagen both founded with the late great legend Kjeld Tolstrup. A man who, on a side note, I'm pretty sure would have made the secret selection to end all secret selections. RIP.

Le also has great taste. Obviously, since she's both given airplay to and released a track by the man they call Liquido!

We met around five years ago through big homie Lewis. It's hard to imagine now, but at that time, Le was just getting into house music and DJing, and she had just started her first clubnight called Clap Clap.

Disco!

Clap-clap.

There was another club called Klub Rolig. Which means Club Quiet. So crazy it actually worked! Though to be honest, my memories of those years are kind of fuzzy. I guess, because I was a student and had to make room for all that knowledge I was aquiring.

Most recently, Le has ventured into the biggest club of all: motherhood. We're all happy for you, and Imma let you finish, but also looking forward to you returning to the radio in the new year.

I guess being a radio host and label boss is like being a secret selector all the time. So let's see what Le has up her sleeve:

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Secret Selector Selections #50: DJ Helmet

Helmet inna de Jungle

I'm pretty sure you could ask a million kids what they want to be when they grow up, and not one of them will say ”DJ and promoter of gigantic club events slash star academic and Iran expert”.

Nevertheless, that's Rasmus Elling aka Rasmus Hjælm aka DJ Helmet. The man with the most bizarre job combination in the world.

Around ten years ago, he co-founded RAW -. Scandinavia's biggest clubbing event. Starting as a 1.500 pacs event with 5 floors, it's grown steadily to attract 7.000 people from around the world each year, hosting the best of the best from all club genres – from house and techno through hip hop and R'n'B to jungle and dubstep.

Rave!

Around the same time RAW started, Rasmus was actually also the first person to ever book me for a DJ gig in Copenhagen! At his club Urbanical, where I was playing in the second room, while Dr. Disk was playing in the mainroom longside Inspectah Scratch, now a good friend who's acquaintance I made that evening over a hookah.

I have no idea if Helmet lives two parallel lives or if he somehow manages to find common ground and combine these things. But at some point, he started studying Persian at uni.

This was before 9/11, so studying Persian was basically pointless, sort of like if you wanted to study something like Papuan language today. But apparently, Rasmus had alway been a big fan of alphabets, including the Arab/Persian sort, so that was the way to go.

Some times fate and awesomeness collide. Iran has become relevant and Hjælm has stayed awesome, so these days you can find him at the university of Copenhagen, the respected SOAS in London or dropping knowledge on TV or radio any time intelligent commentary is in need. That is, when he's not arranging giant raves.

A complicated man, like Shaft.

He was also conflicted as to whether he wanted to do a selection on Persian music (now THAT would have been rare!), hiphop and R'n'B or jungle and breakcore. He chose the latter (plus a little extra third person introduction):

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Secret Selector Selections #49: Mathias Mesteño

One for the trainspotters

If you're around my age or older, you'll remember a practice at night clubs rarely seen these digital days.

The act of going up to the booth, turning your head sideways, trying to read the label on the record spinning and then nodding to the DJ in approval.

"Yeah brov, I know that one. 'Ad it on the shelf for ages. Play it out now and then as well. Just 'ad to be sure". Sure.

Or, if you're a trainspotter, you would just stand next to the booth all night checking labels instead of losing your tits on the dancefloor.

Secret Selector Selections is all about serving gems so you don't have to spend your night standing at the DJ booth like an idiot!

This is a rare occasion. Mathias Toksværd aka Matt Vega aka Mathias Mesteño is one of those guys that you want to see what he's playing. Because, besides producing excellent tracks, the man can groove a dancefloor.

Whether he's playing Panorama Bar, Fabric (he's one of, I'm guessing, VERY few people in the world who have rocked both clubs in one weekend) or a local dancefloor in Copenhagen, Mathias has the whole place moving as one to that sweet house music.

Other credentials seem superfluous. Released records on Fumakilla, TicTacToe, Freerange Records, Upon.You … bla bla bla … used to DJ for one of Denmarks biggest rap groups bla bla ... only Danish person ever to play Cream in Liverpool … bla bla 10 year residency at Vega, one of Denmark's best nightclubs at the time bla bla bla

All in a days work I guess.

So consider this a rare opportunity to lose your tits on the dancefloor (at home) AND be able to check out what's on the labels.

Sweet!

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Secret Selector Selections #48: Najaaraq

Estrogenic Dance Music

Yes! Finally yet another female selector.

Not that I care one bit about gender euality in music. I just think girls often have a different sensibility when it comes to making and selecting music. You often get some different stuff, some stuff the guys normally wouldn't have chosen.

Najaaraq is one of Copenhagen's finest female DJ's, and one of the prime forces driving Dunkel to be one of Copenhagen's absolute nicest spots for techno and house music. Unfortunately, Dunkel is closed. But the memories and Dunkel Radio, which she was also a part of, live on.

She's also quickly evolving into a baaaaaaad producer, going by the name Classic VIV.

Don't ask me how to say that.

Check her remix of Kondens: Valvet. Blew my mind inna Surgeon kind of way.

Besides music, Najaaraq is working at one of our national radio's coolest programs, Harddisken. It's about technology. Awesome. Coincidentally, she interviewed me about using online tutorials for music production a couple of moths ago (Danish language radio).

And now to the music!

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