Gorgol Bordello, Hammersmith Apollo, London

Hammersmith Apollo, London

Eugene Hutz has emerged as one of the more unlikely celebrities of the year. As the frantic lead singer of this self-styled "Gypsy punk revolution" band, he has picked up a BBC Radio 3 World Music award, expanded his following with appearances at Glastonbury and other summer festivals, and is now on his longest ever UK tour.

Tonight, he came on stage sporting a moustache and pink tights, like some curious cross between Borat and Johnny Depp in Pirates of the Caribbean. By the time he stripped off his shirt and slipped into high heels and wig, he was more like a camp answer to Iggy Pop, and his mostly young and mostly female followers clawed at him every time he jumped down into the crowd.

Hutz is a star, and he is backed by an equally clever band. Gogol Bordello are the product of the melting pot of New York's Lower East Side, and combine a Russian accordion-player and violinist with an Israeli guitarist, an Ethiopian bass player and a drummer from Florida.

Here, they came on with an intensity normally reserved for a final encore, and managed to keep up the attack throughout the set. East European Gypsy influences were mixed with slick guitar rock or a dash of dub reggae, and there was scarcely a moment's break between songs that veered from the angry Tribal Connection to the witty American Wedding or singalong anthem Start Wearing Purple. Hutz sang full-tilt until the encores, when he finally slowed down to show off his solo guitar skills on the highly theatrical Alcohol, before embarking on a frantic finale in which he threatened to wreck the stage. This was global pop music with a rare sense of danger.

· At Glasgow ABC, tonight. Box office: 0870 400 0818. Then touring.


Robin Denselow

The GuardianTramp

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