“5 things I’ve noticed since I’ve moved to Amsterdam” – Secret Cinema

Secret Cinema is an undisputed legend in techno music – and no more so than in his native Holland. Despite growing up in Rotterdam, he now resides in Amsterdam. With his latest release, the brilliant Latino Acid EP about to drop on his Gem Records label, we figured it a good time to catch up with him, as he talked us through the 5 things he’s learned since he moved to the Dutch capital over three years ago. So without further ado, here’s what the main man had to say for himself…

People coming… and going!

My wife and I moved from Rotterdam to Amsterdam just days before Amsterdam Dance Event so we had the first guests rolling in while our boxes were still unpacked. There were moments when one friend would leave and an hour later a fresh bunch would arrive. Living in Rotterdam we never had that many people coming round to visit us even though the house was bigger and closer to the centre. Everyone who moves to Amsterdam will find themselves more popular among friends.

Techno City…

Amsterdam is one of the techno capitals of the world. People come here to party and I love that. You see mothers partying with their daughters including the occasional camel face. It is all allowed, and we are all cool about it. The city was not always like this. Until 2010, Job Cohen was mayor of Amsterdam and he was very anti-nightlife. When the recently deceased Eberhard van der Laan took over from him, the city came back to life. He granted the city’s first 24 hour license to club Trouw and since then many clubs followed. I remember he once gave a speech in which he talked about the importance of electronic music to the Netherlands and how Amsterdam should take care of its talent. He will be missed…


Amsterdam is an expensive place to live if you are lucky enough to find a house there. I was just in time, before the big rush began. Due to city planning no building in the centre of town can be higher than the Westerkerk church. That means that unlike Rotterdam we don’t have much of a skyline nor enough housing. I used to have a 200 square meter house and 400 square meter garden in Rotterdam for a fraction of what I am paying now. Going out for a good meal was half the price. Amsterdam is an expensive place, but it has its rewards nonetheless…


In every shop you can always talk to the owner or person working there. Everyone has a story; their door is always open. I like to chat and interact with humans, so this is the place for me. Often, people will give you something for free to try at home after a nice chat. Because the centre is small, I bike most of the times to where I want to go. Avoiding the crowds, which means along the way I discover so many nice little places I’ve never seen before. Little boutiques, little restaurants, even a coffee place where you can pet cats. I think I also found the best cookie in the world. Ask me on Instagram where to find it.

Beauty is everywhere…

Amsterdam is beautiful in every season which is very inspiring. So many musicians and artists live here, it is easy to meet cool creative people anywhere. It is easy to meet fellow composers and have a chat, a coffee or even a session in the studio. In all the years I have lived in Rotterdam I maybe had lunch sporadically with a fellow musician. The city brings in artists from every corner of the music scene. We go to concerts more often than ever before. This city is hard to beat in all aspects of living the good life.

Keep up with Secret Cinema on Facebook, Soundcloud and Resident Advisor

Secret Cinema’s Latino Acid EP is out now. Buy/listen to the release here

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About the Author

UK based former DJ and promoter, co-owner, director, writer & creative at Decoded Magazine. Studied at the University of Wolverhampton graduating in Graphic Communication & Typography (BA Hons). In house video editor and avid MMA follower with a keen ear for dark, twisted, hypnotic, tribal progressive house and techno.