If you want music with awkward melodies and choosy beats, then Buke and Gase is for you. They are a duet who are most well known for their homemade instruments, which are incorporated in their newest album, General Dome. Arone Dyer and Aron Sanchez’s instruments include a bass drum with snares, an enhanced ukulele (the Gase), and a guitar which consists of both bass and electric guitar strings (the Buke), as well as their own amps. All of this is played by the duet themselves, lacking additional members when performing live. They pull it off with guitars around their necks and percussion at their feet.
My initial thought about a band with homemade instruments was that they could introduce new sounds and give a whole different feel to the music. Unfortunately, the instrument sounds of Buke and Gase are no different then any other band’s. The thing that separates this band from others is the way they can reconstruct something and fit it to their advantage. What I mean by this is that Buke and Gase has a large sound, and like I said, it is all done by Arone and Aron.
The album, General Dome, still has much to offer. The beginning track, “Houdini Crush”, welcomes the listener with a stylish and energetic vibe. It makes you want to follow intently and jam out to it simultaneously. The same feeling is carried on to the second track titled, “Hiccup”. They are just buffers, however, to make the listener more comfortable before Dyer and Sanchez bring out their big guns. In other words, it gets more authentic. Buke and Gase start to show their true colors in the title track, “General Dome”, where the beat is syncopated and the melody becomes disjunct. It then goes on from there in tracks like “Twisting the Lasso of Truth” and “Contortion in Training”.
One thing in particular that I like about this album is the way they use auto tune. I have much hatred for auto tune, even when it is used artistically. I just hate that sound, but surprisingly, Arone Dyer pulls it off very well in the song “Cyclopean”. Perhaps the uncanny melody matches the obscurity of auto tune.
The one thing that I did not like about General Dome was the way it ended. There is no big finale to the album. It just drops another song that is easily passable compared to the middle tracks, which was a poor way to wrap the album up. Also, I am not a fan of how they are conforming to more of a pop sound. Whether they are doing it to stand out or to fit in, artists do not adapt to the people, the people adapt to the artists.
Overall, I think Buke and Gase has a great sound. Their instruments make them stand out in their efforts, but I’d like to see them put their talents towards making more original instruments with newer sounds.