In Permanent Rotation, producers, DJs and musicians dig deeper into the albums that inspired them.
Montreal electronic musician Marie Davidson is best known for her passionate solo work, but she has also produced and performed Essaie pas, alongside her husband Pierre Guirineau, and more recently L’Åil Nu, with Guirineau and AsaÃ«l Robitaille. She is currently working on an upcoming solo album.
When asked to pick the record that had the biggest impact on her, Marie Davidson’s first instinct was to groan.
“There were at least 50 records I could have chosen from,” she says. âI could have chosen any Kraftwerk album, I could have spoken of any early Detroit techno album, like Model 500 or Underground Resistance. I could have chosen any Giorgio Moroder album made with sequencers that made a big impression on me at the time.
Eventually she chose Double invite by Bernardino Femminielli, electronic artist born in Montreal and based in Parisa record that had a strong influence not only on his music, but also on his personal life.
Davidson was in her “baby era” of learning to use drum machines and synthesizers when she first heard it in 2012.
“I was 24 or 25 when the record came out and I was nobody,” she recalls. Bernardino was a friend and already an important figure in the Montreal underground scene. He was “making the kind of music that I wanted to make,” Davidson says â more specifically: using gear with real drums, bass, and guitar.
“I thought it was so mysterious and elegant and very sensual, but very cold and rigid,” she says of the album, a Lynchian, darkish mix of post-punk and Italo disco. âThat’s why I love working with sequencers so much, there’s precision and a mechanical feel to it, but it’s very groovy and sexy at the same time. It’s different from just programming on a laptop, it feels very different when done on a machine.
Davidson was so in love with the record, “I confused my feelings and thought I was in love with the person,” she laughs. She and Femminielli ended up dating for a few months, “just to the point where we realized we were just meant to be friends.”
Satisfied as friends and, a decade later, married to other people, the couple’s stories remained intertwined – intertwined by Double invite.
One track on the album, “Chauffeur”, is named after the man who would become Davidson’s husband – Pierre Gurieau, the other half of the minimal duo Essaie pas avec Davidson – who drove Davidson and Femminielli to a festival of music where they both played. in Quebec about ten years ago. It was with Femminielli and other friends that Davidson traveled to Berlin for New Years in 2012, fell in love with the city, and settled there a few years later.
“We’re more like siblings at this point,” Davidson says, adding that she and her husband often hang out with Feminielli and his wife. “We are all friends and family.”
According to Davidson, Femminielli’s music was very present in his sound from the start, especially on ‘ExcÃ¨s De Vitesse’, from his third album, 2015 Another Journey.
Made using machines such as Roland’s TR-505, Arturia Minibrute with MFB Step 64 sequencer, Boss Digital Delay (“DD3 or DD6”) and a Korg monotribe for overdubbing, “it’s very very stripped down,” Davidson says of the track that put her on the map, “influenced by that kind of early sequencer, drum machine music that Bernardino captured so well on Double invite.â
In contrast, Davidson says that Femminielli “doesn’t like getting involved with music equipment at all.” She was able to use one of his synthesizers for a few weeks when he went on tour in Europe at the time Double invite came out, allowing a palpable connection with his inspiration.
The duo have shared turntables â most recently DJing together in Paris â but never talked about making music together.
In some ways it is not necessary – such has been the influence of Double invite.
“For me, in my first year of making music, it was very, very present in my influences and an example of good music. It was something to admire,” says Davidson. Davidson without Bernardino Femminielli.”
Photo: Olivia Vale