Interview: Fat Kids Cake

Pictures by: Milan Goldbach

With ADE on our doorstep, we’re putting the final touches to our essential ADE guide for the coming week. In the series ‘De NachtWacht’ (The NightWatch), Sauza Tequila profiles people and organisations that have (or host) incredible nightly adventures. This month: the folks from creative collective Fat Kids Cake and their ADE adventure this year.  

For this month NightWatch’s eyes are peeled towards Fat Kids Cake. The young company is known in Amsterdam for holding events, a creative agency, online magazine and its own clothing brand. The work and private lives of the people at FKC seem to go pretty much hand in hand. Co-owner Ilsoo van Dijk explains:

Fat Kids Cake has a lot of nightlife friends that it holds dear. That is the core of our audience at events I think, but of course the parties are approachable so everybody can tag along. The line ups at these parties consist mostly of close friends who are growing into serious local acts at the moment, but who still have FKC as their home base and who have contributed a lot to the promotion of the organisation.

With a multitude of operations under one roof, we asked Ilsoo what FKC specifically stands for.

FKC is a brand first and foremost. It’s a creative collective with a lot of different facets, like video and photo shoots, concept and campaign development for brands. One of our other main activities is our range of T-shirts, which is to become a fully-fledged clothing line in the near future.

So how does combining friendship and business so closely work out exactly?

Everything kind of neatly comes together really, even though there is not a specific distribution of roles per se. If I would have to describe everybody’s main traits and responsibilities then I [Ilsoo van Dijk] would be the perfectionist – but sometimes lacking some planning skills. I run the online magazine and its contents. Then there’s Sam, who is the quiet force in the organisation; he focuses mostly on the clothing line. Jamie is the man behind our event production. Finally there is Thierry, who is kind of the face behind the organisation, and Joël, who is our newly found strategist. But in the end everybody’s qualities overlap the different functions in the organisation. We all help each other out in the end.

Who is responsible for the musical programming?

We all are. All of us are music addicts, but in different genres, specifically UK bass, UK house, 2step and garage. So in those fields we’ve booked pretty much everybody who´s relevant. Eventually we do want to push to more house bookings, which allows for broader programming at the events. 

What’s the most memorable FKC moment for you guys? 

It’s actually a couple, but I don’t I’m allowed to share them in an interview [laughs]. But of course our very first event was one of the most special moments for us. It took place last February at the MC Theater. Together, without any real experience, we put together a successful party like we couldn’t have imagined in our wildest dreams.

And we hosted a party in Hannover recently, together with a promoter called This Ain’t Bristol, that also hosts comparable events to ours in Germany. They first came to Amsterdam for a collaboration with us, after which we went to them to return the favour.

[Partying in German cities] is very different from Amsterdam! We’re spoiled to the bone in this city. Every weekend we have all the parties and artists for our choosing, and it’s all done quite professionally. And most of the time we’re hanging back at parties, chatting around, looking pretty whenever we sense there’s a picture to be taken of you.

How was it over there?

Very different from Amsterdam! We’re spoiled to the bone in this city. Every weekend we have all the parties and artists for our choosing, and it’s all done quite professionally. And most of the time we’re hanging back at parties, chatting around, looking pretty whenever we sense there’s a picture to be taken of you.

Over there though, the place was packed and the atmosphere was already well underway by 11pm, something unimaginable in Amsterdam, where nobody leaves his or her house before 1am. The reaction of the German crowd was equally incredible, people wanted to take pictures with us, and even our autographs. I mean they appreciated the night they had on an entirely different level than the Dutch do.

So what’s on the FKC agenda for the coming months?

We have a couple of events lined up. First up is ADE of course! On Wednesday we’re bringing the undisputed king of garage and one of the most incredible technical DJs to the Chicago Social Club: DJ EZ. It will be the third time that we’ve booked him actually, we love that guy and his sets. Also lined up is Barely Legal, another UK artist who is on the verge of breaking through right now.

On Friday we’ll be giving a party together with 44bass and Roots, for which we’ve invited a lot of different UK acts in Studio/K, featuring Redlight, DJ Haus, Shadow Child and Billy Kenny, together with Dutch DJs Wouter S, Samuel Deep, Locklead and many others.

By the end of October we have another event underway in Het Sieraad: A ‘Mokum’ [a nick-name for Amsterdam] Halloween Story: ‘Till Death Do Us Part ‘. We’re focussing on Amsterdam, with a lot of cool local acts playing across three stages; one focussing mainly on house and techno for the first time, the second one on hiphop and the third stage hosting a range of ‘soundsystems’ from various organisations that we have close relations with. Expect a lot of attention given to the decoration and special effects for this one.

What are the bigger plans for the future of FKC?

We are making plans for our very first Fat Kids Cake festival! We will unveil the first information on that one in the near future. Another dream of ours that is about to come true is brand activation, so concept development for brands. And of course we want to expand our events into new territory. Next year Jamie and me are traveling to the Indonesian island of Bali to meet up with club owners there to maybe set up FKC events over there.

Sauza Tequila Nederland Fat Kids Cake 

FKC ADE Showcase w/ DJ EZ   Fat Kids Cake x 44Bass x Roots ADE Special