Gogol Bordello

Trans-Continental Hustle

Written by: PP on 20/05/2010 01:54:15

"Caravan is comin', all guitars are strummin'" sings the eccentric and rowdy Gogol Bordello vocalist Eugene Hütz in the fitting opening line of their fifth album "Trans-Continental Hustle", their Rick Rubin produced major label debut. One of the most original artists of the last decade pick up exactly where they left off three years ago with "Super Taranta!", delivering more colourful, cacophonic gypsy punk equally beloved by both the mainstream and the underground, indie kids and scenesters alike.

It's so difficult not to love them. Songs like "My Companjera" or "Immigraniada (We Comin' Rougher)" invite you to join in one of the many frenzied dance-raves dominating the festival grounds wherever these guys play. There's plenty of rhythmic percussion and ethnic melodies, accordion, acoustic guitars, and even violins if I'm not entirely mistaken, all played in a traditional gypsy manner, spiced with relentless punk energy. It all sounds wonderfully theatric and charismatic, as if you're listening to a play unfold on record, but at the same time down to earth and....insane. Listening to Hütz rave and rumble through his folksy lines really makes you question his sanity at times - especially when the musical landscape even borrows elements from 60s Finnish pop music (see "Rebellion" or "Uma Menina") and vividly combines them with the whole Balkan thing they have going on.

It is this multi-nationalist, pan-European attitude to composing music that makes Gogol Bordello such a cheerful listen, no matter what your musical background is. They know how to make you bounce, how to feel emotion, even how to make you throw away your life in favour of joining them on their gypsy caravan, singing and dancing according to the Romani culture on the streets of Belgrade and elsewhere. If there's one criticism to Bordello, it's that sometimes, especially towards the end of the album, the studio recordings just don't live up to the live experience, because you'll feel sorta stupid just dancing by yourself in your bedroom.


Download: Pala Tute, My Companjera, Immigraniada
For the fans of: La Folie, Kultur Shock, DeVotchKa
Listen: Myspace

Release date 27.04.2010
American Recordings

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