Marc Houle: live act, producer, musician and label owner from Canada. Raised in Windsor, Ontario, his musical influences came from his trips across the river to Detroit discovering the sound of analog synths, drum machines and Techno. While most live acts started to play DJ sets, Marc stayed true to his craft of shaping the sound and performing live which might be the secret to his long successful career and high reputation in the industry. He started his career as a key member of Richie Hawtin’s Minus label family and gained a strong following to then pursue a new home to start his own family of music: Items & Things. With his latest release Sinister Mind, the first part of a trilogy LP, he found a new format to assess his musical journey and to reflect on his sound he has developed over the past 10 years. He calls it an “autobiographical studio project”.
For the photo shoot, we visited Marc at his modern and spacious apartment in Berlin. Greeted by a Totoro door mat and his dog named Kitty, we already felt like seeing a different side of the artist Marc Houle who usually is portrayed as the dark, untouchable and mysterious Techno veteran. We were equally impressed to find a wide selection of essentials already prepared and laid out for us to choose from. Each item came with a great story and we noticed immediately that Marc is not just a music enthusiast but also an amazing host and storyteller. His essentials represent his current passions in life and what inspires him most: music, cooking, and his dog Kitty.
1. DOG COLLAR (NO BRAND): The collar actually belongs to my dog not me but she’s amazing and makes me so damn happy. (hi Kitty!)
2. MUSIC PLAYER (FIIO, BUY HERE): The ipod looking thing is a Fiio X1. It’s less than 100 bucks and you can throw an SD card in full of wav, flac, mp3, ape etc. The D/A converter is better than a regular phone and stuff sounds great on it. Plus after a long plane ride i dont end up with a dead phone battery.
3. TR-8 (ROLAND, BUY HERE): The TR-8 is skinned with a custom Commodore 64 template my brother Dave made for me. It’s the most important thing i have on stage and as beat up as it looks, it sounds great.
4. KNIVES (MAC, CHECK HERE): I cook almost every meal I eat and a sharp knife is my best tool. The MAC knife was a Christmas gift from my sister so it’s very special while the Shun was a gift to myself so not as special. Keep em sharp and cutting is a blast.