Bandmates Ramsey, Matt, and Justin have journeyed through childhood and teenage-hood together—all the moments and memories reflected in their maturing sound and refined skills, as they saturate the senses with bits of old jazz and lots of new jams.
Imagine being invited into a song and the music feels like magic in the middle of the mundane. Imagine musicians constructing and deconstructing a jam on stage, confidently and skillfully beckoning the listener to go with them. Imagine a performance where egos are left off stage, and all that remains is an experience—one of sheer enjoyment of the moment, pure love of music, and a generosity in sharing the experience with you—the listener.
As their record title implies, So Natural I Wish I Had a Time Machine, the music takes you to another place. Whether a serene summer day, a shot of energy, or a melodic escape only the most proficient musicians can provide, Bungalouski jams transport as (super) naturally as a time machine.
And let them not fool you; these three kings of chill are devout and seasoned risk-takers. If the spark of creativity hits one of the players on stage, they go wherever the notes, the melody, the groove bids… and their audience flows effortlessly inside the jam. Bungalouski refrains grow more in depth with each show, their instruments dovetailing into an increasingly cohesive sound.
When asked how he would describe their sound to future fans, guitarist Justin Dupuis offers, “I would say we are similar to a jam band in the sense that we often improvise, but we also have songs that are played the same way every time. We have soft grooves, dance grooves, hard distortion, and a crisp crunch. We have a little taste of everything.”
The musicians characteristically challenge themselves to keep developing their technical skills as well as evolving as artists on stage. They weave their old songs into a new sound that continues to surprise them and the listeners they readily refer to as “friends.”
Bass player, Matt, describes their creative process: “We build a structure with identifiable elements but leave time to jam, and let it happen. There’s a beginning riff and then we stack and build from there. It’s like Legos.”
“Jazz in the Water,” one of Bungalouski’s most beloved jams, proves a crowd pleaser every time, with a teaser or twist waiting somewhere inside the song. The players on stage and the audience experience the music with equal exuberance.
Bungalouski provides the nuts and bolts of a jam band, but with openness to unknowns and affinity for other genres.
Rhythmic grooves and energy are supported by a firm foundation built on years of honing their skills—Matt on bass, Ramsey on drums, and Justin on guitar and occasional keys. Practicing, listening to feedback, being willing to grow and change has paid off. Live performances are ripe with cohesive timing, dynamic changes and brilliant riffs that keep even the twelve-minute jams mesmerizing. Matt, Justin, and Ramsey obtain a familiarity with their instrument and collaboratively with each other far beyond their years.
Each member plays an integral role in the outcome of a song, from inception to performance. It’s evident the three genuinely enjoy jamming together; as Matt says, “I love performing but even if we never performed again, we could make noises for 45 minutes and still have a blast.”
Describing Justin as a character on stage, Matt says, “He is extremely good at making up these really technical off-beat progressions that are soloing licks or little riffs; sometimes they don’t really make sense but in the end they will after we work on it enough, get it down right like something in an odd time signature.”
Matt is described as “the energy, the on-stage personality” earning the moniker “Fancy Pants” after the adoption of a funky pair of pants. His enjoyment of being in the moment and finding that bass groove to complement the counterparts is audible.
Ramsey, as drummer, is seen as the “bus driver” and referred to as The Philosopher. He brings jams back together, helps steer the melodies—where the notes want to go next. Often in tune with the audience, he describes this process as “getting inside the listeners brain and find out what they want to hear next—you become a vehicle for the experience that’s happening.”
The three musicians don’t take themselves too seriously. While they hold the emerging sound in the highest regard, they revel in the offbeat, unexpected moments that take place on stage.
Uninhibited by current trends or dictates of a one-hit wonder pop culture; Bungalouski brings out the best in music. Listening to them is a unique, inventive, and nostalgic experience. The boys of Bungalouski are rare birds who are flying high with unlimited sky ahead.
"Bungalouski: Inside the Jam"
--By Ali Plum