Gogol Bordello “Gypsy Punks: Underdog World Strike”

Album Reviews | Aug 9th, 2005

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Record Label: Side One Dummy
Band Link:
Buy on Amazon.com link

The first time I listened to Gogol Bordello, I wasn’t really impressed. I just skimmed over the tracks to get a feel for the music, but I decided to check out the album again. I realized hey, this is some unique and catchy shit! And then I discovered the song “Start Wearing Purple” and haven’t stopped listening to it. I was saying to myself that this song would be perfect for a single, and it is! I listen to that song every day in the car and blare it! The adjacent cars must think i’m a totally nutbag. The music video shows just how much fun this band is and I can’t wait to see them perform soon in the city.

Now if I had to describe the type of music Gogol Bordello play, it’s a mixture of punk, gypsy party music, and other genres like reggae, ska, Latin and even folk. The lead singer, Eugene Hutz, actually starred in his first full-length movie called “Everything is Illuminated,” starring opposite Elijah Wood and directed by actor Liev Schreiber. Pretty cool for being his first movie! He’s from the Ukraine, and really reminds me of Shane MacGowan of the Pogues. He just has that look, singing style and personality that reminds me of him. Perhaps a mixture of Shane MacGowan and a pirate is a better description. Gotta love that mustache! Maybe that’s why I like this band so much, because they remind me of the Pogues so much. Not just because of their unique sound but also pushing the boundary on punk rock. You can’t really classify these guys as punks though, but they are definitely doing something different and people are taking notice. There’s like 8 members in the band, and i love the accordion and violin in their music. Their music is so eclectic, strange and the more I listen to it, I love it! Each song sounds different from each other and that’s a good thing because it shows the variety and range of their music. I like the song “Illumination” because it’s very folk-ish, and it has a Billy Bragg/MacGowan feel to it. Though “Start Wearing Purple” is the standout track and by far, the best track on the album. If you are sick of the same old thing in the music scene, than look no further and check out Gogol Bordello! They are one fun, eclectic band! PARTY!

Bottom Line: Imagine Shane MacGowan singing for a Gypsy party punk band and you got Gogol Bordello!
Notable Tracks: Start Wearing Purple, Sally, I Would Never Wanna Be young Again, Not a Crime, Avenue B, Think Locally Fuck Globally, Illumination
Overall Rating: