Interview with Job Sifre

krossfingers-hero-job-sifre2-1425

We spoke with the man behind our top record of 2017: he just turned 26, his name is Job and he has an irresistible smile 🙂 The resident of Red Light Radio and De School, Sifre is an Amsterdam hidden hero who’s getting more and more attention globally atm, his Worries EP was the most played record of Dekmantel Selectors festival last summer and we can’t wait to hear more from him in 2018.

You said you are finishing your bachelor thesis atm, what are you studying?

I am studying Music Management. Basically, the idea for this study is that you can do management within the music industry. Sadly, though, it is focused a lot on major labels, major events, not particularly what I’m looking for.

girl2

Is it a subject of interest for you or became an obligation to finish studies?

The subject itself is interesting of course. I love music, and working in the music industry. Problem is that you’re forced to work in groups a lot, which isn’t very convenient when you have a very specific taste in music. But, hey, I’m down for my last year now, so gotta get to the finish line.

What do you like about Amsterdam?

I love it! Although it’s popular to complain about how many tourists there are in the little streets in the centre, how the housing prices are skyrocketing, and how many Nutella waffle shops popped up in the last few years, I wouldn’t wanna live anywhere else. The music scene is thriving in Amsterdam right now. With a few really good records shops and of course Red Light Radio, we have great international appeal. Also, the clubbing has improved a lot over the last years. Shout out to De School, who found me worthy of a residency, which I’m really proud of! Also, I am really happy with the rise of Garage Noord, besides a quality club as De School, its also important to have a smaller, more intimate venue that’s open to experiments.

Talking about the city, I was rushing around these “little streets in the centre” every time I was there. Can you advice some spots to escape it? 🙂

Actually, lately I have made peace with the crowded streets, also since most record shops are there, and the radio station too. Also, there are a couple of gems in the city centre, restaurant-wise. Outside of the city centre, there are some cool spots in the North of Amsterdam, like Garage Noord (club, but also for food), FC Hyena (cinema), Coba (restaurant), and there’s a lot of stuff to do on the NDSM wharf. Also, if you like fine dining, the restaurants of De School & Choux are recommended.

girl1

I was in De School once, Young Marco played, and I can say it was really one the best club experiences in my life. Am I right, it was opened by the same people who were making the Trouw? It’s quite different places, right?

It’s the same company that started De School, one year after the closing of Trouw. It’s different times though, and just creating a new Trouw would be boring. Also, they have a new programmer (Luc Mastenbroek), and a lot of new other staff, which also gives the club a new feel, look, and sound. I think Trouw was great for that period in Amsterdam, a lot of younger people were discovering club culture, and the club laid the foundation for the scene how it is now. I think De School is the next step in the uprise of Amsterdam club culture, more edgy, more free. Besides that, I think it doesn’t make sense to compare them, as both clubs were very different from each other.

Are you from Amsterdam?

I wasn’t born here though, I was originally born and raised in Haarlem, which is a 15 min train ride away from Amsterdam. I used to come to Amsterdam a lot as a teenager, so the step to moving here was crystal clear.

Your 12″ on Artificial Dance doesn’t feel like the ordinary debut record, it feels very mature and confident. How long are you making music?

Lol, not as confident as it might seem. I am just doing what I love to do, and making music that i personally would love to hear. That it would be this successful and people would think of me as a confident producer, was also a surprise for me. I’ve been making music for ages, but mostly just fucking around. I only just discovered 2-3 years ago what music I want to dedicate myself to, so since then making music was more serious.

job1

What was that “click” about in your head?

I listened to wavey and more experimental stuff all along, but only 2-3 years ago I finally understood what it was that got me excited in this music. In the beginning I found most electronic music excited, so also house and tool techno for instance, because it was new to me. After a while, I could make a better distinction between what I really liked, and what I just liked out of curiosity.

Around the same time you started your show, right?

I do my show for a little over 1 year now. My show motivates me to find music that isn’t fitted for the club. In the beginning I would only download songs that were suited for the club, because otherwise, I couldn’t use them. Although I found other non-dance music very beautiful, I needed to find myself a reason to pursue these tracks too, so that’s how it started.

Is it your voice on the Worries opening track? Does the idea about live show excite you?

It is my voice, actually. I’m not really interested in doing a live show at this point, though. I get easily bored from my own tracks, so doing a live show means a lot of rehearsing, performing with songs I already heard 1000000 times. Also, I really love DJ’ing, so I wanna focus on that first. I am cautiously fantasizing about starting an electronic live band though, 3-4 people with vocals, maybe guitar, drum computers and a couple of synths. But don’t get too excited because that’s more of a long term dream for me.

job4

What was the first track you wrote on the Worries? The record sounds like you created a puzzle, one piece after another. Did you feel that connection in the process?

The first track was Worries, actually. After Olf (Interstellar Funk) approached me roughly a year after I made Worries, we sat down and listened to the other tracks I made in the meantime, and made a selection. When I was working on these tracks I didn’t have a particular release in mind. You could see it as a puzzle in a way, because the tracks really reflect on how I felt, and what I was interested in, during that period of time before the release. We were trying to make a selection that would reflect all of the different sounds that I pursued, but still would make a solid EP.

As a producer, can you say that you really can capture what you want to hear at this very moment in music? Is the music making always sort of improvisation or you find some idea/trick in others track and it leads you to create something on top of it?

It’s a combination, of course. What you love in music, is always inspired by other people. Without a reference point, taste doesn’t exist. And the way people produce, can inspire me to try to find out how they did something, or give me ideas to use a technique in a way that suits me. Besides this, though, I am also producing according to what I miss in music. For instance the thought: “I love wave/ebm music, how can I combine this with my love for industrial or tribal stuff.” Or „What would come out if I combine influences from this and this genre.” I am always in search of combining the sounds of music that I love with something new, make combinations that haven’t been made before. Just making another darkwave record would be boring for me personally.

Follow Job on Soundcloud

Interview Sasha Tessio.
Photos Job Sifre (3, 4), Dorien van Linge (1, 2)

Read also:

The best records of September 2014

Track 117: Hiroshima

Podcast 43: Chris Kontos

There are everything mixed up from flirting and sadness to gin and soda in this mix from Chris Kontos. Unbridled passion intersects with the lone male soul