CD: Gogol Bordello, Gypsy Punks: Underdog World Strike

(Side One Dummy)

Anyone bemoaning the dearth of genuine one-offs in rock can take heart from Eugene Hutz's Gogol Bordello, a New York-based octet that could only have sprung from the brain of a charismatic Ukrainian immigrant who connected punk's DIY exuberance to the music of eastern European gypsies. Produced by alt-rock godfather Steve Albini, their third album is dissident party music for boozy revolutionaries.

Like the Pogues with Slavic accents, they give traditional Romany folk a raucous overhaul; fiddles and accordions cavort with galloping drums and jagged reggae rhythms. At the roaring heart of it all, Hutz surveys the world from Manhattan's Lower East Side to the streets of Grozny and barks his bizarre rallying cries: Start Wearing Purple; Think Locally, Fuck Globally. The mood of this passionate, urgent, violently alive record reflects its message: life is short and often hard, there is no time to waste.


Dorian Lynskey

The GuardianTramp

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