Interview: Buke And Gase

Buke and Gase picture from Facebook

[I have two windows open: in one, my questions for Arone Dyer and Aron Sanchez of Buke & Gase. In the other window, I have the Creation Kit, and I’m building a castle for Skyrim. I’m determined not to use fan-made resources, crafting purely from what shipped with the game. I tell myself it looks more authentic that way, but that’s untrue. It’s because by setting myself limits, blocked creatively into a corner, I have to think my way out. I have to snap those little lego-blocks together in ever more inventive ways, which pushes and stretches me. I can’t rely on things built by other people to let me coast along: either I imagine it, or it doesn’t exist.]

There’s no such thing as a buke. Arone Dyer invented it out of an old baritone ukelele and bits of whatever else they had lying around – I think it had bits of old car in it at some point – because they imagined it and wanted it to exist. Arone needed something lighter than a guitar, but I’m baffled by the ukelele: it’s just not something I associate with indie rock.

Aron: Actually there are a lot more ukeleles in indie rock than Gase’s. We don’t necessarily like ukeleles at all – we wanted to make a small experimental electric guitar and made one from parts of a ukelele. It is now a Buke.

The gass is a guitar-bass hybrid, similarly concocted by Aron Sanchez because he just didn’t want to be just another bass player. Hence, Buke and Gass – or Buke & Gase, as they call themselves for obvious reasons. Just the two of them, with just the two instruments plus their voices and whatever percussion they can strap to their feet. They make a hell of a racket for such a tiny band, but it’s a glorious noise. It’s indie rock, stretched and pushed until it makes something new. Descriptions are amusingly inept – they’re not “folk metal” or “chamber punk”, but I’ll give them “asymmetric congruencies of melodic discordance”. They pretty much sound like this.

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First impressions: Buke And Gase – General Dome


I keep putting this off because I want to do it justice and I’m worried about saying the wrong things. I don’t want to overegg it – oversell it – but I do want you to hear it because you really need General Dome.

General Dome isn’t this year’s Screamadelica, but it is this year’s King of Limbs: that album that leaves you with a satisfied smile on your face feeling like all is right with the world. I’m more relieved than thrilled because I was so worried that Buke And Gase would let me down. I’d built them up as so frustratingly close to true brilliance but who had only given glimpses of their staggering potential. General Dome is how they start to realise it: to combine infectious melodies, depth and innovation in one iridescent, shimmering package.

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Top 50 songs of 2012: 10 to 1


10. Buke & Gase – Misshaping Introduction

Buke & Gase have more potential than any act I’ve heard all year. Their last album was startling, if not quite classic; their next should dispel all doubts.

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Beyond 2012: Five things to look forward to when that Mayan calendar flips again


Star Trek Into Darkness

Let’s not beat around the bush here: the last Star Trek was f***ing magic, and this returns with the same director and perfect cast. Here’s hoping for the same mixture of exhilarating action, spot-on humour and warm, fuzzy feelings we got from the last one.  Continue reading

New Buke and Gase EP available to pre-order

I gave Buke and Gase quite a hard time in my many posts about them because I’ve always found them frustrating: so obviously gifted and unique and refreshing, and so obviously capable of more. The good news is that, courtesy of new EP Function Falls, it looks like we’re going to get it. The four-track download will be released on 11 September, but you can hear the first song right away. (Those who pre-order can download one track in advance.)  Continue reading

“Radiohead is because it’s like this total triumph of short people”

We’ve been having fun with Googlism, a website that filters descriptions from Google to tell you what Google “thinks” of you. For example:

princess stomper is normally represented as a small pink bunny
princess stomper is a former magazine contributor and music researcher
princess stomper is making way too many assumptions in this article  Continue reading