Tuesday, 4 July 2006

Crowd surfing on a drum

The Interstitial One and I went to see Gogol Bordello in Nottingham last night and what a great show it was. Led by Eugene Hutz, Gogol Bordello started out playing so-called Ukrainian Gypsy Cabaret Punk, but with the change in line-up of some members over the course of three albums (and one collaboration as J.U.F.), their sound has spread to other Balkan music and influences. The punk bits and gypsy bits are still very much in there, however and apart from the Gypsy Punks label they proudly wear, the current tour merchandise makes heavy use of the song Think Locally, Fuck Globally as an additional theme. The song was also a highlight with the crowd.

I have read that their live shows have become firm favourites among New York's adventurous crowds and have seen a video of Young Again which looked scary and fascinating. While the touring line-up doesn't include all the extras usually running around on stage, the instruments comprising guitar, drums, bass, accordian, violin and acoustic guitar are supplemented by cymbals and one of these kadetorkes big drums, wielded to great precision by two Asian women who contributed massively to the overall stage image of chaos.

The music was loud and excellent and Hutz is a crazy stage maniac, running around, jumping into the crowd with mic to let them join in the singing, letting his guitar slide of his body because of his antics, jumping, shouting, jumping... Picture a thin, tall Twakkie on intravenous caffeine. Not to take away from the other crazies, but he carries the show and when the neverending final song, Baro Foro kept going and going, with bits of Undestructable lyrics and chorus thrown inbetween, Hutz took the drum into the crowd and stood on it, beating it, with the fans carrying him like a demented Caesar, before he crawled up the speakers, seemingly unstoppable and indeed, undestructable after more than an hour and a half's music.

It was an amazing spectacle and the crowd loved Start Wearing Purple, 60 Revolutions, Dogs Were Barking, Sally, When the Trickster Starts A-Poking etc. I know I haven't seen them live before, but it was really amazing. And I will go again if I can. And the Interstitial One... I think she would too....


  1. I thought the Interstitial One did not like audience participation ;-)

  2. Well, if the audience is far enough away, they can participate as much they like. We were not in the middle of things, so then itäs ok ;-)

  3. My previous comment fell under the spell of a German keyboard.