Review: Buke and Gase’s “General Dome” hits the mark between originality and listenability

Ryan Morris

Editor’s note: The following reflects the opinions of the author.

There’s a very important question that needs to be answered before delving into “General Dome,” which is, of course: what is a “Buke and Gase?”

Aside from being the stage name of Brooklyn musicians Arone Dyer and Aron Sanchez, the Buke – an electric baritone ukulele – and Gase – a guitar/bass combination – are also the names of the instruments they wield.

Are they avant-garde? One could say that. But before eyes start to roll, give a listen to “Houdini Crush”, the album’s opening track. What you may find is a sound that is crunchy and cryptic on the outside, yet undeniable poppy at its core.

A definable characteristic to this track, along with the rest of the album, is a percussion element which is for the most part produced by stomping and a homemade instrument dubbed the “toe-bourine.”

Buke and Gase embrace a chaotic instrumentation that is brought together and down to earth by the vocals of Dyer. Forceful yet vulnerable, Dyer’s voice is the deciding factor between “General Dome” being passed off as either audio riffraff or captivating composition.

The album’s third track “In the Company of Fish” begins with a fluid vocal duet between Dyer and Sanchez before becoming increasing more rigid and mechanical. It eventually builds up to a soaring hook before fading into a simple chug.

“My Best Andre Shot” is by far one of the funkiest, in-your-face tracks from “General Dome.” Heavy with percussion, this track’s technical composition just doesn’t quit for a second.

Being only two members with such a big sound to harness, Buke and Gase do their best within the boundaries of their capabilities. Some listeners may be left desiring more as far as variance in sound, but it’s impressive how with only two members, the band is able create music more impassioned and creative than other bands with the average four or five members.

“General Dome” is one of few albums where being a little ‘gimmicky’ actually works. Some might wonder how far a sound like this could actually go, but by the sound of it Buke and Gase have introduced new wave in listenable music by homemade instruments.

“General Dome” is scheduled for release on Jan 29 via Brassland Records.

Rating: Three and a half out of four stars.

Story: CONNOR CHILDERS, Senior A&E Reporter