Book Reviews

The Ballad Of Buttery Cake Ass by Aug Stone

What Da Cover Says: Two music obsessives embark on a hilarious quest to track down Buttery Cake Ass’ Live In Hungaria, an album as legendary as it is obscure. Their pursuit of one of the greatest bands ever unknown takes them down many a bizarre path teeming with grand ideas and grander egos in this ode to record shopping and what it’s like to be in your first band.

What I Says: Right kids, gather round and listen to this story of the insane apocalyptic life your parents lived when they was young, in the days before the Internet, when a mate tells you about this cool band they’ve heard and you actually have to leave the house and travel around record stores trying to find a copy, this was all the more stressful if the band was slightly unknown. These days the only things you have to worry about is if your phone has enough charge left in it to open Spotify and your abnormally large thumbs have enough energy to type the band’s name (as I type this I realise you can probably use some kind of fancy voice command to save having to type, whatever!). This book is a celebration of that great hunt us oldies went on as kids, I remember looking for albums by Scarfo, Tribute to nothing and Sick of it all and getting blank looks in many stores and then when I found it taking it home and hoping I would like it as all I had to go on was a tiny write up in NME or Kerrang!

If you haven’t heard of Aug Stone before then I highly recommend looking up Young Southpaw on YouTube, it will give you an idea of the tempo you need to read this book and an understanding how the wild tangents work. Next I recommend googling Buttery Cake Ass, you’ll get some tasty results for sure.

So for the actual review…this is one hell of a fun trip, Aug has written a fantastic musical documentary which is somehow full of auditory sensations, I’m not sure I’ve ever experienced anything quite like this; when the band play live the writing matches the tempo and I felt I was there, I could hear the music and see the lights, the band were suddenly with me…and then it ended and I have no recollection of what I had heard. I suspect these pages have been coated in something. We have two sides to this story, Aug and Trig going around the record shops looking for records by this mysterious band they had never heard of and as they interview somebody with a connection to the band the story seamlessly cuts away to the band and you gradually start to see their life play out. It was interesting reading about Buttery Cake Ass, how they formed, settled on a name and gradually found their sound, there is a lot of discussion about the band’s influences and I found this affected the playlist on my commute to work. I don’t know if it was intentional or coincidence but I spotted the odd musical link now and then, my favourite was the character called Brouce, the way I read this made me sing that line in the ELO song Don’t Bring Me Down.

This is a great book, loads of fun and an amazing amount of effort put into creating this, including a discography of all materials by the band members…I think what this now needs is to be made into a movie and for Band T-shirts to be available, man! I’d love one of them. If you’re old enough to remember that hunt for a record, or are a young historian investigating life from the 80’s then pick up this book, with a name like The Ballad of Buttery Cake Ass you know you’ll not be disappointed.

Many thanks to the author for sending me a copy of this book.


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