Most build-related tools offer clear, powerful, and well-documented command line interfaces. See the docs on ESLint’s CLI as a good example. I find reading and implementing a short command line call in npm scripts clearer, lower friction, and easier to debug (since there’s a layer of abstraction removed).
Maybe your boring stack is PHP (someone just groaned about PHP). It’s tempting to read all of the articles making bold claims about PHP being a second class language and decide to learn a new, more respected, language. If your goal is to work in a respected language then you’re bad a setting goals — Huge companies ship great products with PHP. Some even find the language interesting.