Almost Famous: Aye Nako

Welcome to Almost Famous, a weekly segment that Crystal usually writes but which I have hijacked this week and YOU DIDN’T EVEN NOTICE DID YOU?!?!?!?!?  This is also why it’s going up on Thursday. Surprise! Almost Famous is where we ask up-and-coming queer musicians some not so hard-hitting questions about music and life and maybe even convince them to share photos of their pets. Get to know intimate details about your new favorite artist or band before they hit the Big Time and become too famous for us to interview for real.

Header by Rory Midhani


hi dog

hi dog

Decorated veterans of the Brooklyn DIY community Aye Nako aspire to subvert traditional ideas of gender and sexuality.  They also write some damn catchy songs, occasionally categorized as “queercore” or “homo-pop,” and as of late they’ve been getting a lot of attention for their new album Unleash Yourself.  Singer/guitarist Mars Ganito has often been quoted mentioning that the band’s music is meant to fill a specific void, namely the kind of music that the band members would have liked to have heard themselves as queer teenagers.

Most importantly, they sent me a video of their dog twerking, which was an Almost Famous first and definitely a game changer.

How would you describe your music?

Angie: This is a difficult question. I don’t think “pop punk” is fitting, though we get that tag a lot. We usually describe our music as Queercore, which I like because our queerness plays a big part in our music and our band as a whole.

Which track would you most like Autostraddle readers to hear?

Mars: I chose “In Dog Years” because the overall style of it is closer to what I’m pushing for our music to sound like, especially with the deeper vocals all through out. At the time of writing the melody, I guess I subconsciously knew I was getting closer to feeling ready for my transition, ready to start T. I used to pride myself for having a higher range, but now I really cringe hearing my voice that way.

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Do you have any pets, and if so can we see a photo?

Attached is a photo of Broccolini.

you guys, thisis broccolini.

oh my god you guys, this is broccolini.

What inspires you to write?

Mars: Dreams/nightmares, childhood, weird stories, sex.

What is the best and worst thing about touring?

Angie: The best thing about tour is meeting new friends, discovering new bands, and getting to share our music with so many people. The worst part, for me, is feeling homesick.

If you could only listen to one album for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Mars: A tie between Come On Over by Shania Twain and The Execution of All Things by Rilo Kiley.

Have you ever had to work a terrible job to pursue your music career?

Mars: I’ve only ever worked terrible jobs to pursue my music career.

Describe the environment you write your songs in.

Angie: Crowded, tiny, expensive Brooklyn practice space. Living the NYC dream!

What was the last book you read?

Mars: Nevada by Imogen Binnie
Angie: Same for me!

What were the first and last records you bought?

Mars: First: Big Willie Style by Will Smith. Last: Major Arcana by Speedy Ortiz
Angie: First: Tragic Kingdom by No Doubt. Last: Something Wild by Radiator Hospital

Aye Nako are currently getting ready to play a bunch of shows in the New York area, but they’ll be in Chicago Aug 31 for the Fourth Annual Black and Brown Punk Show.  Their new record Unleash Yourself is available streaming, in physical or download form on their website.

If you are, or know of, a queer artist or band that should be featured in Almost Famous, drop me the details via crystal [at] autostraddle [dot] com. Please write ‘Almost Famous’ in the subject line!


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Stef Schwartz is a founding member and the self-appointed Vapid Fluff Editor at She currently resides in New York City, where she spends her days writing songs nobody will ever hear and her nights telling much more successful musicians what to do. Follow her on twitter and/or instagram.

Stef has written 464 articles for us.


  1. ACK. I want to be them. All of them. Or at least play a show with them. Brooklyn queers, man.

  2. By “Aye Nako” do you mean/are you referencing the filipino expression? Because if so that name just got like 100x awesomer.

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