The Info Pusher and I have been making a point of taking in shows at The Music Gallery the last couple of years. It’s always a great experience: located in an old church with ghostly magical phantom sounds and gaggles of music-school nerds (who sport more interesting sub-fashions than you’ll see elsewhere, including pompadors of piled hair), the music is always a little over my head and mind-expanding. This week was the Music Gallery’s Avant X New Music Series V.6.
Last night she took me to see Buke and Gass who were NPR phenoms last year, getting promo’d on Radiolab and their own Tiny Desk Concert. They make their own instruments, amps and pedals, and make a massive amount of sound for a duo.
They were the third of three acts following a free-music sax player named Lori Freedman and a percussion sextet named Mantra, who played 6 2-by-4s with contact mics on them for an hour. Both of these acts were interesting, sometimes fascinating, generally challenging. As often happens, myself and the lovely Pusher had radically different reactions at times – she was astonished when, halfway through the Mantra piece*, I mimed blowing my head off. Apparently she was riveted and in heaven. Trying to figure out those reactions afterwards is half the fun.
Buke and Gass played really rocking, heavy music with intricate, precise structures that reminded me of the Rheostatics jamming with PJ Harvey. I loved it. The IP preferred the concept to the realization. You make up your own mind: go.
Here’s another track called Revel in Contempt.
… And here’s the Mantra Piece (Timber) in excerpt: