Techno from the Dutch capital.
Trouw in Amsterdam is one of Europe's best clubs, and Sandrien is one its best DJs. She's been playing music in the Dutch capital since 1999, and has established herself as one of the country's go-to techno DJs. For a long time she played alongside her friend Carlos Valdes—the pair ran a successful party together called MAD2 at Club 11, Trouw's predecessor and a bygone favourite in the city's rave community. In 2010, Trouw asked her to host a new monthly event. Sandrien named the party Imprint and set out to bring the best names in techno to Trouw. She has spent the last four years developing a confident style that draws from all shades of techno, something that's evident at her occasional all-night sets at Imprint. Sandrien has become a regular at the major European techno outposts, with Berghain, Corsica Studios and Concrete among her recent bookings. That she's only released a small handful of tracks—Haters for Darko Esser's Wolfskuil label being the most notable—shows the respect she commands as a selector.
With Trouw's closure looming on the horizon, Sandrien's excellent 90-minute mix for us feels especially significant. Recorded at the club one Friday afternoon, this session represents of one of Trouw's defining parties.
What have you been up to recently?
Things are going very well. I just did a Japan tour with Peter van Hoesen. I played at the mnml ssgs night at Dommune, Mariana 2.0 at Air Tokyo and The Star Festival. I've been doing a lot of gigs this year and I've recently joined a new international agency, Apelago.
How and where was the mix recorded?
I recorded the mix at Trouw in Amsterdam on a Friday afternoon while the club was closed. I used two Technics turntables, two CDJs and an Allen & Heath Xone:92 mixer.
Can you tell us about the idea behind the mix?
I really wanted to catch the vibe of a DJ set I would normally play at the Imprint nights, that's why I recorded it at the club. I wanted to build it up slowly, put more energy in the set later on, and close it down deep.
What sort of impact do you think Trouw's closure will have on Amsterdam nightlife?
It will be a big loss. I think the club, location, vibe and the lineups are the best Amsterdam has to offer at the moment. The 24-hour permit we've had since last year made it really special as well, throwing weekenders, something we weren't used to over here. But Amsterdam has a vibrant dance scene, a lot of good things happening right now. I'm sure there will be new initiatives for opening new clubs. Let's hope it will be just as good or even better.
Do you have any favourite memories from down the years?
What I love about Trouw is that it really feels like a family—from bar, restaurant, door and office staff to security, cleaners and DJs, it's like a second home. Some special moments—one is the first time we could use the 24-hour license. After we finished the Imprint night at 8 AM, I was chilling with Heleen Blanken (who's doing the visuals for Imprint) at the Trouw office, with the lights out and we could hear the music from the next DJ playing, knowing the party would go on for another 24 hours. It was a new feeling of freedom we hadn't experienced before, the clubs normally close at 5 AM in Amsterdam.
Doing an all-nighter during my birthday last march was a special moment as well. I could play for 7.5 hours, my mother was sitting behind me and supporting me, great moment. And I've heard so many great DJ sets—too many to name—it helped me grow as an artist.
What are you up to next?
I'll be doing the next Imprint party on the 31st of May with Henning Baer and TR-101. And I have a busy festival season coming up, some nice club gigs as well, Berghain the 14th of June. A lot of good things to look forward to!