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Gogol Bordello @ Turner Hall Ballroom

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Jun. 17, 2008
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  Just in case you were worried, the spirit of punk is alive and thrashing, thanks in part to the eclectic collective Gogol Bordello.The group stormed the stage at the Turner Hall Ballroom last Wednesday, while a solid turnout of punkers, college kids and boomers (reliving their mosh-pit days) showed that punk marches on, even when mixed with a multi-ethnic sturm und drang.

  Immigrant Eugene Hutz is the manic mastermind and marketer of Gogol Bordello, which bills itself as “Gypsy Punk Revolution.” Hutz even dresses the part, wearing circus-like black and white striped pants belted with multi colored ties. Bare chested, he spat out lyrics in his Ukrainian-accented English, pulling most of the material from Gogol Bordello’s 2007 release, Super Taranta!Hutz’ raucous wails, frenzied moves and snarling vocals kept the show moving and the adrenaline pumping throughout the frantic 90-minute set.

  But Gogol Bordello is to be seen and heard, between its mix of fiddles and accordions, an MC/rapper from Ecuador and garishly made-up female singers/dancers in their neo-ethnic fashion emergency costumes. And the music?In the true spirit of punk, their live show was marked by screaming, yelling and general energy.

  “Wanderlust King” turned up the volume, sending bodies jumping and fists pumping, while the autocratic politics of “Tribal Connection” rained down on the hot, sweaty crowd up front. Gogol Bordello filled every moment of their set with noise and movement, even with its first encore song, a post bar time, slurred ballad aptly titled “Alcohol.”

  But what would the gypsy punk revolution be without a little Balkan folk music thrown in?Enter the second encore number, “Super Taranta!” It’s tradition immersed in punk, the song beckoned the masses to dance along with the multi-ethnic mess. It was pure Gogol Bordello.


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