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Gogol Bordello


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Totem Polish
18:27 / 05.02.06
This is a band I first heard of on here and have since had appear in my hands (by accident or design) a couple of their records. Both of them 'Multi contra Culti' and 'Gypsy Punks' are a mad clash of Dub, Ukrainian folk music and ska. Their frontman grew up on Einstuerzende Neubauten and the Birthday Party, something that filters greatly into the arrangement of the songs, and is made by a group of Ukranian immigrants and New York hipsters. Oh, and their last album was produced by Steve Albini giving it some lashings of consciously 'underground' indie cool...

Whatsmore, Eugene Hutz, the singer and visionary plays the translator in Liev Schriber's film of 'Everything is Eluminated'. What do other barbeloids think of them, if at all (though I know some of you certainly have an opinion)?
21:34 / 05.02.06
Absolute fucking genius. Gypsy Punks Underdog World Strike was one of the best albums of 2005- and one of the most punk, in the way I like to use the word. Fun-wise, energy-wise, ideology-wise... punk klezmer is the future. And if it isn't, it should be. "Dogs Were Barking" is one of the most joyful pieces of music I've heard in years...

One of the all-time great party bands. And with good shit to say and their hearts in the right place. Gogol Bordello fucking rule.

I'm actually drunk and listening to them now, so I can't be too coherent, but I'll try to come up with justifications for all the above in the next couple of days when I'm more sober.

There is a little punk rock mafia everywhere you go
She is good to me and I am good to her...
22:27 / 05.02.06
There is a core
And it's hardcore
All is hardcore
When made with love
P. Horus Rhacoid
04:17 / 07.02.06
Just, erm, acquired 'Gypsy Punks Underdog' on the strength of the phrase 'klezmer-punk.' Am six songs deep at the moment. Initial impressions: holy shit this is fantastic. More coherent thoughts to come when I've finished listening and had some time to process it.

"Dogs Were Barking" just started. So far, so awesome.
14:48 / 07.02.06
I picked up "Gypsy Punks" really cheap a couple of weeks ago, based on vague recollections of hearing Gogol Bordello talked up on the Barb, and it's fantastic. It's such joyful, unselfconscious and exiting music, but not at all shallow or uninteresting. It's really scratching me where I itch.

Albini's recording (he refuses to be called a "producer" is excellent, too, especially considering that Gogol Bordello's sound is miles away from the harsh, clanging, angular rock which is his speciality.

How does "Gypsy Punks" compare to their other records?
15:47 / 07.02.06
How does "Gypsy Punks" compare to their other records?

Gypsy Punks is, I'd say, their most realized album so far - it best captures their live intensity (See. Them. Live.). East Infection was the warm-up EP for GP, and has much of the same feel (Albini did a couple tracks) - plus their essential cover of Mano Chao's "Mala Vida." Multi Kontra Culti is excellent, songwise, but the production is less raw - not as loud, not as much (blessed) noise in the mix. They didn't have a full-time bass player yet, either, and you can feel the difference. Still highly recommended, though. Voi-La Intruder is very different - it was an earlier, smaller line-up, and is overall a more introspective, almost 'folky' album. I love it, but I find I don't listen to it nearly as much.

Gogol Bordello vs. Tamir Muskat - J.U.F. (Jewish-Ukrainian Friendship) is, as Hutz put it, "Gogol afterhours" - "sometimes punk turns to dub, sometimes Gogol turns to J.U.F." **Absolute Must Hear Album** It's not Gogol Bordello, exactly - it's more like Hutz's DJ style (he spins the Bulgarian Bar in NYC), with Tamir Muskat (of Balkan Beat Box) and guests. "[C]razy what-the-fuck style Gypsy-punk meets dub/dancehall crossover. The bass is deep, the hand-drumming frantic, and the violin and Balkan horns are on fire." Summer windows-down driving music.

Some of you may be interested to know that Gogol is touring the UK in March.
Totem Polish
15:53 / 07.02.06
I reckon Multi contra Culti is far more indebted to the Birthday Party than Gypsy Punks. The tempos aren't always as relentlessly fast or dubby as 'Gypsy Punks' and 'Baro Foro', a nearly traditional gypsy cabaret song, clocks in at nearly 10 minutes.

This is no bad thing, I think that 'Gypsy Punks' really challenges Albini's aesthetic by being entirely loud and raw, which Steve does well. The other album I think is more fragile and rootsy. 'Bordello kind of Guy' takes the best of that with brass and the 'Gypsy Punks' raucousness.

Still gets right under your skin.
17:30 / 07.02.06
Woo... anyone up for the London date?
21:01 / 07.02.06
Polish and I were both discussing that..I think it would be ace- we would, of course, have to dress up for the whole thing, Immigrant punk style..
23:37 / 07.02.06
Do it. It would, of course, be nice to meet you both as well!

I'm figuring we should sort tickets soon, as they seem to be suddenly getting an awful lot of coverage (probably because of the movie...)- there was a massive interview with Hutz on the World Service a couple of months back.
Totem Polish
14:54 / 08.02.06
Yeah, as soon as they're on the cover of Plan B (if they haven't been already) it'll be indie hair central...I'll get onto it asap.

Have been on a bit of a Gogol splurge and got the J.U.F album, which is the best late night music ever. 'Onto Transmigration' is the best and only dub-rai song I've heard. Perhaps I'm missing out on something big?

Eugene Hutz is the only man who can scream about rastafari and sound like he's not doing it just to be cool. Brilliant.
Totem Polish
14:55 / 08.02.06
Hmm...have just gotten up and am a bit excited at seeing the sun for once. Still a great record though...
Totem Polish
17:54 / 08.02.06
...Just as I thought, the gigs been moved to the Astoria (grim). Bought my tickets though, so that's you and me sorted Mick. At least now we won't have to contend with that step that's cursed the LA2 since mosh knows when...anyone know who they're playing with?
19:45 / 08.02.06
I'll try to order a ticket tonight...
16:38 / 11.02.06
Just got me ticket... not sure yet if I can get the night off work, so don't know how pissed I'll be able to get, though.
16:41 / 11.02.06
Ooh- and me copies of Voi-La Intruder and Multi Contra Culti just turned up from Amazon. I'm all Bordello-d up today, for sure!
P. Horus Rhacoid
01:36 / 20.02.06
Saw them last night at a college near mine. Fucking awesome. They played mostly stuff from Underdog World Strike so I actually knew most of the songs despite being newly introduced to the band, which was sweet because singing/yelling along rules. The crowd was pretty small- probably a hundred or hundred fifty, tops- but in spite of the oversized space we were in it felt incredibly personal. Eugene Hürtz is absolutely the best frontman I've ever seen (it should be mentioned that my experience is limited- I grew up in the middle of nowhere)- the man fucking knows how to get a crowd into things. Lots of audience participation type stuff, and the front row was basically on stage. I never go up close to the stage at shows because I'm a skinny-ass wuss and I hate people bumping into me, plus crowd surfing really pisses me off (get your ass off of my head, please) but basically I got sucked into the crowd, and on the rare occasions when I left for some reason I got pulled back in. It's the first show I've been to where I felt like the audience itself was a part of the performance. As a bonus it wasn't too loud (I have tinnitus and I forgot to bring earplugs) and I landed myself a free t-shirt that got chucked into the crowd. My heathen friend who drove me there made us leave before the encores, which sucked, and we almost died on the way home because the roads were ridiculously snowy but, frankly, if we absolutely had to go at that point I think I would have died happy.

This sort of thing may be old news to you grizzled punk-show vets, but it was totally new for me. To repeat, it was fucking awesome. As somebody said upthread, see. Them. Live.

Came at a great time, too, I'd just had a nasty fight with one of my housemates that was largely my own fault so I was pissed off about that, and leaping around in a sea of bodies while singing along to a spastic Ukrainian immigrant performing gypsy folk-punk was pretty much what the doctor ordered.
03:45 / 20.02.06
Ooh, sounds good. I can't fucking wait. In fact, not only have I taken the night of the London gig (a Friday) off work, I've taken the rest of the weekend off too. Just so's I can, y'know, "celebrate" the occasion properly. And repent at leisure.
10:52 / 06.03.06

Got "Gypsy Punks" on Friday. Played loud saturday morning. "F--- me, this is fantastic! Yay!"

Look back here this morning, read "best live band in the world", think "I can believe it!" See link to tour dates:

"Portsmouth - 2nd March."


I want to cry.

In other news - does anyone hear echoes of The Young Gods here and there?
11:22 / 06.03.06
I think maybe the voice, and the whole Kurt Weill-ness give a certain Young Godsiness.
16:46 / 06.03.06
Yesterday I noticed they were playing that night round the corner, Concorde 2. I went and took GGMeme.

Fuck me sideways, IT WAS THE BEST GIG EVER. I have a T Shirt. My ears are still ringing and I have pogo injuries for the first time in years.

As an example of how rock it was, the lead singer got loads of the crowd on stage (inc. Meme) then got them to hold up the drum, then crowd surfed on the drum, on stage, while singing like a fucking maniac. I am smug as a bug in a rug, GO GYPSY PUNKS!
16:48 / 06.03.06
(Thanks for that, by the way: between Barbelith and eMusic, the time lapse from first hearing of The Young Gods to actually listening to Play Kurt Weill was about 12 minutes.)
16:57 / 06.03.06
My only quibble is that they didn't play Oh No which is even better than Dogs Are Barking-

Sometimes when facing common trouble
When whole town is screwed
We become actually human
Act like Prometheus would...

..But one thing is surely eternal
It's condition of a man
Who don't know where he is going
Who don't know where does he stand
Who's dream power is corked bottle
Put away in dry dark place
Who's youth power is well buried
Under propaganda waves
Who's dream life is in opposition
With the life he leads today
Who's beaten down in believing
It's just kinda goes this way
Oh no, it doesn't have to be so
Forces of the creative mind are unstoppable!
17:07 / 06.03.06
I am looking forward to Friday more than I've looked forward to a gig in years.

Anyone in London (or even from outside- I have a spare bed) try to come and see them. Everything I've read both here and elsewhere is making me think this could indeed be the best gig ever.

(And one of them's also a member of Firewater- it's criminal that I've never seen them, too).
Goodness Gracious Meme
13:12 / 07.03.06
God it was AMAZING.

I have no brain, so I will come back to this. But god, what performers they are!
21:29 / 07.03.06
If I wasn't working Friday evening I'd be up to the big smoke quick as a poker up a pervert to see them again, Stoatmeister you have to have the best time for us all; Get a T-Shirt! Kiss the band! Get on stage! Dance like the Flash having a fit! w00t!
Totem Polish
12:56 / 08.03.06
Can I repeat stoatie's sentiment and say that I have never looked forward to a gig as much since I was a wee emo kid and had got tickets to see Fugazi two nights in a row on their final tour.

Now Fugazi sure weren't as much of a party experience as Gogol have been described (or as they are when me and my friends dance to them when pished) so it's the little kid in a toyshop feeling all over again. Yay!
13:02 / 08.03.06
You so should be looking forward to it. Saw them on Saturday in Nottingham and we ended up dancing like we'd shat our pants for a good hour straight.

The best gig i've ever been to, bar none. I'd go and see them again if i could scrabble the pennies together.
18:11 / 08.03.06
When you see Gogol, make sure to ask around about the afterparty - there will be one, and the invitation is usually open (according to Hutz, at any rate).
18:16 / 08.03.06
When we saw them in Hartford, the show was sadly underpublicized, so there were only about 30 people in the place (including staff). Nevertheless, the band played like they were trying to kill us all.

I danced so hard I couldn't drive home...
Goodness Gracious Meme
14:27 / 09.03.06
I predict that Stoatie will be very happy come Friday night. Possibly yr perfect gig.
00:27 / 10.03.06
There's a full-page article about them in tomorrow's (Friday) T2.
Baobab Branches and Plastic
13:36 / 10.03.06
Is there a mini-barb meet up then cos me and a mate are going?
Totem Polish
14:09 / 10.03.06
There is indeed, Bradley's Spanish Bar off Oxford Street at 6 if you can make it. It's between Costa and Benjy's towards Tottenham Court Road. Look at the pictures thread for reference...if y'known what I mean.
11:12 / 11.03.06
They were ace. The Astoria sucked as a place to see them, though- simultaneously too big and too full. And I missed a chunk in the middle due to being reunited with a drinking buddy from many years ago, though that seemed entirely fitting with the spirit of the occasion.

They did, however, rule. Eugene is clearly The Man (no, not that The Man, the cool one).

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