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secretsundaze has been one of my favorite parties to follow over the years, boasting spectacular lineups and locations that send news of their events worldwide. Their party is in the “must attend” category and are so because they sacrifice nothing to ensure the vibe is always perfect. In fact, much about the way they throw parties has inspired my own events here in the States, particularly their attention to detail, the vibe and their talent booking. Did I mention they are now twelve seasons deep on this party? That doesn’t seem like an accident to me. Well, that’s because it’s not. These guys may have humble beginnings, but they are certainly party professionals in the highest sense of the term. Sunday, May 26th, the founders and fearless leaders of secretsundaze, James Priestley and Giles Smith, have planned a quite the lineup for their May Bank Holiday Special. The event will take place at Oval Space, Bethnal Green in London, a space the two are very fond of, and will feature Panorama Bar resident Nick Höppner, KiNK live, Joey Anderson and of course resident secretsundaze staples, James & Giles. In advance of their much anticipated party, I had the pleasure of interviewing the guys to find out some background on the party, their reasons for choosing Nick, KiNK and Joey and some favorite tracks of theirs of the moment.
secretsundaze May Bank Holiday Special
Sunday May 26
29-32 The Oval, Bethnal Green, London E2 9DY
Mi4L: How long has secretsundaze been around? What was your inspiration for starting the party?
JP: Secretsundaze began in the the summer of 2002, in the upstairs loft room of 93 Feet East on Brick Lane here in cloudy London. It was quite a natural beginning, a group of friends wanting to put on a party mostly to play records to their friends. We were also into the idea of doing a Sunday party, to get away from that laddish culture that you associate Saturday nights with. Plus early trips to Ibiza were certainly a big influence, daytime partying on the terrace of Space for example was a real eye opener and we were keen to try to develop that daytime party vibe here..
Mi4L: Has secretsundaze become what you set out for it to be from the beginning or has it taken new shape as the party grew in size and popularity?
JP: We had no plans when we set out – had no idea how it would go or what would come from it. we were just a bunch of kids in their mid 20s doing it for a crack really. We had no expectations whatsoever and so yes, it’s grown massively over the years with the parties here in London, abroad and now with the label and sister booking agency, The Secret Agency. Still loving what we’re doing and the party seems still very much alive in every sense. It’s also great to be working with some artists in a closer sense and helping to develop them through the label.
Mi4L: We’re based over here on the west coast of the States and still have been hearing about your parties for years. What makes a secretsundaze party so special?
JP: Ah, that’s a shame as we did a party with our friend Doc Martin last year, secretsundaze vs sublevel, was great.. I guess u need to experience it for yourself. We don’t compromise on our programming and musical integrity and I think that just filters through to the party. We get a really broad mix of people coming to the party, always have, and I think it’s the attitude that people come with that makes it so special. That coupled with a high sense of production values and the whole daytime ethos that makes it quite unique I guess.
Mi4L: On May 26th London’s Bethnal Green. What factors compelled you choose this venue for your event?
JP: It’s hands down our favourite new spot in London. It has the feel of a warehouse space, a blank canvas as such, but with all the attributes of a proper club in terms of sound and facilities. It also has plenty of natural light, one long wall of windows as well as sky lights and 2 terraces, one looking out over quite a dramatic now defunct gasworks. It’s perfect for us in every sense really, and is also in a great location. Only a couple of minutes walk from my flat so an easy stumble home too..
Mi4L: Why did you choose Nick Höppner, KiNK and Joey Anderson to headline your event? Are there any particular tracks by these guys that really move you?
GS: Nick is simply an excellent DJ with impeccable taste across the board in house and techno and has of course probably the most desirable residency in the world at Panorama bar. He is definitely what we would call a DJs DJ – not being hyped by big productions but just his DJing and taste. Kink is someone that we have of course bought records by mainly on Rush Hour and sometimes working with UK promoter Neville Watson. His live sets are full of energy and of course have quite an acid influence. His well known youtube movies that illustrate him jamming have fueled his buzz and he was in RA’s Top Ten best live acts in 2012. Finally Joey Anderson is someone we are very much looking forward to hosting. We met in NYC a few years back when we were playing on a boat party with his friend DJ Qu and we have seen him grow with killer, off kilter tracks like ‘Earth Calls’, 2000 BC Dancer and now his new track ‘Press Play’ that just hit the shops on new label latency.
Mi4L: Anything people attending secretsundaze for the first time should know?
GS: As obvious as it sounds to expect to have a good time. We are a party and although we’re very serious about music we’re not po faced chin strokers! Arrive early too, its a daytime party so come early to celebrate that fact. Joey Anderson will play from 4pm so don’t miss him – its his debut London set.
Mi4L: What is one track you are looking forward to playing?
GS: Well we have a brand new track that we have signed to secretsundaze called ‘One More City’ by John Daly. Its an epic, timeless detroit influenced house / techno track with lots of energy at 128 bpm’s but still has a lot of soul and atmosphere. Looking forward to playing this in the last hour for sure.
-Slow aka Jon Dadon