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MUSIC

These are the Spotify hits Danes listened to in 2016

Want to build an end-of-year playlist Danish style? Here are 2016's most streamed tracks in Denmark.

These are the Spotify hits Danes listened to in 2016
Hear all of the tracks that blasted through Danes' headphones this year. Photo: Iris
1. Nede Mette by Blak
 
 
This track by Lolland rapper/singer Blak is the most streamed Danish song of all time and has been played more than 10 million times. The song is about Mette, a girl who is “down with it”. 
 
2. One Dance by Drake
 
 
3. Love Yourself by Justin Bieber
 
 
4. Model by Gulddreng
 
 
Gulddreng, or 'The Golden Boy', seemingly came out of nowhere to take over the Danish charts. His identity was for months surrounded in mystery as he built a carefully-crafted persona by posting photos on Instagram in which he was always wearing sunglasses and flashing gold jewellery and expensive drinks. He also offered up small nuggets of wisdom such as “Money made me different, different made me gold.” His identity was eventually revealed as Malte Ebert, a 21-year-old from the small town of Andkjær.
 
5. Se Mig Nu by Gulddreng
 
 
6. Cold Water by Major Lazer with Justin Bieber and MØ
 
 
Odense native Karen Marie Ørsted, better known as MØ, continued what she started with 2015's megahit 'Lean On' by once again teaming up with Major Lazer. Oh, and some guy named Justin Bieber.
 
7. Tidligt Op by Gilli
 
 
Although he's been releasing music since 2012, rapper Gilli's career was given a major boost when he played the lead role in the 2014 hit movie 'Ækte vare'. His single 'Tidligt Op' debuted at number seven on Spotify's global chart, an amazing feat for someone rapping in a language spoke by under six million people. 
 
8. Sex by Cheat Codes x Kris Kross Amsterdam
 
 
9. Faded by Alan Walker
 
The Danes' love for this Norwegian producer's track didn't quite match that those in his home country, where it topped Norway's year-end list and was one of two Walker tracks in the Norwegian top ten.
 
10. I Took a Pill in Ibiza (SeeB Remix) by Mike Posner
 
 
Curious how Danes' music tastes stack up against the rest of the world? Spotify said its top five most-streamed tracks globally were:
 
1. One Dance (feat. WizKid and Kyla) – Drake
2. I Took A Pill in Ibiza – Seeb Remix – Mike Posner
3. Don't Let Me Down (feat. Daya) – The Chainsmokers
4. Work (feat. Drake) – Rihanna
5. Cheap Thrills – Sia

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MUSIC

The Danish death metal band that became reality TV stars

The Aarhus band Baest is poised for an international breakthrough thanks to a recent documentary and an injection of taxpayer money.

The Danish death metal band that became reality TV stars
Baest is Sebastian Adildsten, Svend Karlsson, Lasse Revsbech, Mattias Melchiorsen and Simon Olsen. Photo: Nikolaj Bransholm
Death metal is a genre defined by growling vocals, blistering distorted guitars and blast beats. The sound is typically accompanied by dark imagery that borders on the downright evil. In a music world dominated by sugary pop and hip-hop, it’s about as far away from the mainstream one can get. 
 
But a young Danish death metal band is upending all of that. The Aarhus-based Baest found its way into the homes of ordinary Danes nationwide thanks to a documentary series on public television that chronicled their attempt to make music their full-time gig.
 
The series, ‘Den Satans Familie’, follows the young band as they leave Aarhus and embark on their first real European tour. It paints an intimate picture of the five members’ relationships, both with each other and the families they left behind while on the road. Baest only formed in 2015, so the documentary captures how members Sebastian Abildsten (drums), Svend Karlsson (guitar), Mattias Melchiorsen (bass), Simon Olsen (vocals) and Lasse Revsbech (guitar) in some ways still seem to be working out how to co-exist, something that's not always easy when crammed inside a small tour van. 
 
The DR3 series meant that these young, long-haired, heavily-tattooed metal dudes were suddenly reaching a much larger audience, including many who were not necessarily fans of their sound but couldn’t help but be drawn in by their personalities and their raw struggle to make it in the music business. 
 
 
But getting featured in a reality TV show wasn’t the only boost for Baest. The band was named 'best new Danish act' by highly-respected music magazine Gaffa, which also declared their debut album Danse Macabre the best metal or hard rock album of 2018.
 
Baest was also granted 250,000 kroner from the Danish Arts Foundation, a state-run fund for supporting Danish arts abroad. The financial boost is likely to come in handy as the young Aarhusians prepare to hit the road again in support of their upcoming second album, Venenum, which is due on September 13. 
 
Following the band’s standout performance at Copenhell, the annual heavy metal festival in Copenhagen, I caught up with guitarist Lasse Revsbech to talk about the band’s whirlwind success. 
 
First of all, I really enjoyed your performance at Copenhell. What was that like for you? 
 
“We’ve never played a crowd that big before, it was amazing. We’ve been building up over the past few years in Denmark, so to see where it’s gotten to now makes it all worth it. At Copenhell, we shared the stage with some fucking true legends. Sometimes I have to pinch myself to make sure I’m not dreaming. It’s insane.”
 
How do you describe Baest?
 
“Baest is an intense band, with high energy and raw power but with an enormous smile.”
 
How did the reality show come about? 
 
“Our manager was in a dialogue with [public broadcaster] DR and they decided to send a crew to cover one of our gigs at VoxHall in Aarhus. We told them we were on the verge of going on this tour and everyone just thought it would be fun to do it.”
 
The metal world can often seem overly concerned about image and authenticity and in the documentary you come across as this group of really nice, down-to-earth guys. Did you have any concerns about how this might affect your image? 
 
“We were definitely nervous about the metal community’s reaction and how things would be edited and presented but fortunately we really think that DR hit the nail on the head. There’s been such a great response. A lot of true metalheads and touring musicians have told us that it painted such an honest picture of the music industry. A lot of metal bands have a hard time with this concept of selling out but we’ve not been told once – not yet, at least – they were are sell-outs.”
 
You also received a grant from the Danish Arts Foundation. Isn’t it a bit crazy that public money is going to a death metal band? 
 
“Haha, it makes you happy to pay your taxes! It’s so Danish! But really, it’s all about people supporting people and it’s something I think other countries should do.” 
 
What are you hoping to achieve with the release of your new album? 
 
“First and foremost, we’re hoping it allows us to tour more. This autumn, we’ll be heading out for our biggest European tour thus far, as main support for an Entombed AD & Aborted co-headling tour. Entombed are one of the pioneers of death metal, so it’s insane to go on tour with those guys. 
 
“Even if the new album doesn’t make us explode, we hope it will get us one step closer to that. We’re a band that likes to dream big, so we want to play on the biggest stages all around the world. Hopefully, this is a step in the right direction.” 
 
 
Baest’s tour in support of Entombed AD and Aborted kicks off on October 18 in London and will take them to 28 cities throughout Europe, including a November 1 stop at Vega in Copenhagen. Venenum will hit stores and streaming services on September 13 and lead single ‘As Above So Below’ is out now. The four-part documentary on Baest is available to stream here.
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