Deep Down Underground: CALReK

Undoubtedly one of Plymouth’s most established and skilled techno DJs, Calrek has been a prominent feature of the underground techno scene since the mid nineties. Combining his love of quality music and technical knowledge, he has brought true underground techno to his home city of Plymouth.

Initially working as a roadie for a rhythm and blues band, Calrek's first attempt at live musical performance was playing the electric guitar for several local heavy metal bands. He quickly progressed to manning the sound desk for outdoor events and club nights. During this time Calrek had regular dealings with our other DJs, event promoters, producers and professionals within the sound industry. Calrek gained valuable experience, and always acknowledged the importance of well produced music and finely tuned sound equipment in a club setting. Having had first his hand experience of the Plymouth club circuit, it became apparent that the scene was crying out for a regular, quality techno night, and so Calrek’s vision of Oorpi was born. The objective was simple - the highest quality techno music with intelligent visuals and lighting in a uniquely created environment, allowing the music to make its mark.

Calrek felt that producing his own tracks was a natural progression. Oorpi 1 and 2 were soon cut on dub-plates early in 1997 and unleashed on the Oorpi regulars, becoming instant classics. At the time, Calrek set out to make the Oorpi Techno vision become reality. Several years later, Oorpi Techno, as the event was now known, went back to basics. Discarding the usual backdrops preferred by club promoters, Oorpi Techno broke the mould and took place at the purposely blackened-out Tramps venue at Bretonside, Plymouth, showcasing the professional digital lighting and visuals of Damage FX and Missing Linkz to their full effect. The event also made a positive and lasting impression by incorporating the very best in sound reinforcement audio systems.

As Oorpi Techno grew into a huge success, Calrek’s mixing skills became apparent. Lightning-fast and nimble, whilst at the same time using a mixer to full effect to bring in tracks with his unique style. Despite his technical skills, Calrek is a strong believer in maintaining the human element. In an age of locked grooves and digital perfection, his presence behind the decks leaves the listener in no doubt that his sets are live and unplanned. From recognisable classics to fresh new material, each tune in Calrek's collection must be high quality techno, or it will simply not make the grade. Calrek's varied collection of techno cannot be pigeonholed - from tribal percussions to driving basslines and relentless hard beats and grooves, stabbing synths to explicit vocals, Calrek spins them all with finesse.

Following on from the success of another of Calrek's projects DMTNetradio (which was Plymouth's first 24/7 streaming underground net radio station setup in 2000), Calrek created his own legendary live video chat (known as LVC to his regulars). Often imitated but never surpassed, this groundbreaking app allowed Calrek to interact with techno lovers across the globe since 2000. Combining high quality sound, visuals, and the live video chat, Calrek's website attracts visitors from all over the world. As well as featuring his own live sessions, the site also broadcasts live shows by other European guest artists.

Calrek has forged strong links with fellow techno DJs and promoters across the scene, and as a result he has headlined at numerous large events overseas in recent years, such as the Mexhanika festivals and the Technosphere festivals in Russia and Ukraine. He is a resident DJ for the Technosphere organisation and has performed at the huge Kazantip festival in Crimea multiple times as well as doing guest shows on many global FM radio stations.

Remember DMT: Do More Things!