Motor City Cribs 

Longtime Ann Arbor renters Brendan Gillen and wife Amber Elle purchased this huge three-story house on West Grand Boulevard last year for a price that wouldn’t land you an Ann Arbor bungalow.

Brendan has been kicking it as half of electro duo Ectomorph for nearly 15 years now and running the label Interdimensional Transmissions for 12. He’s also the man who added the killer mix to Wolf Eyes’ two brutal Sub Pop records. Amber is known for her fashion show and performance art collision group Infinite Dimension, which frequently tears it up with Ectomorph. Their collaborative Halloween shows are legendary.

So why did the couple leave the City of Trees? It was his own music that partly drove him out. See, you’d think college town folk could deal with music coming from a neighbor. Hardly. Some people just gotta hate on the 808’s. (An 808 is legendary drum machine. It is to hip hop, electro and techno what a Les Paul, Strat or Tele is to rock ’n’ roll.)

“I love how friendly and relaxed our neighbors are and how loud we can make music.” Brendan says. “We’ve had no noise complaints, unlike Ann Arbor where the 808 boom brought neighbors to my door with weapons drawn …”

More by Doug Coombe

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