Gogol Bordello- Cardiff, Tramshed – 3 July 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Nev Brooks   
Sunday, 16 July 2017 04:30

I got a little tingle of excitement when I heard about this tour and it turned into one of those ‘who’s picking up the tickets then?’ conversations. As the date got closer and closer, I had an email drop into my inbox, asking ‘do you fancy reviewing the gig and interviewing the band?!?!’ Fuck yeah… the excitement level went up a gear and the day was spent with the guys from the band watching them work up a couple of new tracks from the forthcoming LP, culminating in interviewing Eugene Hutz, the lead singer, in what turned out to be one of the most interesting conversations I’ve had in ages: scheduled for ten minutes, it turned into an hour plus and was one of those moments that really stick with you. The interview will follow here on Über Rock shortly.


Gogol Bordello live

Photo courtesy of www.facebook.com/gogolbordello/


Now Gogol Bordello, if you don’t know them, are without doubt one of those bands that everyone should see at least once in their lifetime: live they are absolutely insane. With a new single just about to drop and a new album, ‘Seekers And Finders’ due, now was probably the perfect time to catch them. What also hit me was this was the band’s fourth gig in a little more than 72 hours, encompassing three shows in three different countries in 24 hours: playing Sweden, flying to Slovakia and then onto London before Cardiff. These guys are one of the hardest working bands on the circuit and live it shows.


Opening up on this gig was Dave Hause & The Mermaid. Dave has been around the music scene since the ‘90s initially playing guitar in a Philadelphia hardcore band called Step Ahead. Live I didn’t get the early days influence, instead coming across as a more intense Springsteen; looking a bit closer to home at times he brought up memories of the sorely missed Electric River Band… there was even a hint of the Stereophonics school of anthemic rock. Writing this up I’m gonna track backwards and listen to that early doors stuff. As an aside, and always the sign of a good band, the crowd grew and grew as more and more people got into the vibe, a cracking start to the night.


Let the insanity commence… with breathing space at a minimum, temperature rising by the second and the buzz of anticipation at breaking point, Gogol Bordello hit the stage and the venue exploded, the band feeding off the audience, who in turn are feeding off the band. The energy generated almost visible, not a band member is stood still: they are everywhere, led and cajoled by Eugene Hutz, one of the best front men currently working a stage. It got faster and faster; talking earlier we’d spoken about bands needing to leave nothing on the stage: ffs, most bands would have collapsed by three songs in. Gypsy punk be fucked! The new songs we’d heard being worked up earlier, ‘Love Gangsters’ and ‘Walking On The Burning Coal’, took on a whole new identity live, standing right up there with ‘Immigradiada’, ‘My Compajnero’, ‘Pala Tute’, ‘Wonderlust King’ and ‘Start Wearing Purple’.


Watching the crowd and getting my thoughts together, what’s evident is that it’s not just the band who are going to leave nothing left, the audience are right there for the ride, dancing, crowd surfing, moshing, its difficult to explain how intense the experience is for 90 full minutes plus. A question, how good are the band when 90 minutes seems like five?


The best bit, leaving a venue when the buzz of energy is palpable, the air still electric, and me with nothing left!


Gogol Bordello return to the UK in December, playing the following dates:


Tuesday 12 – Manchester, Academy

Thursday 14 – Brixton, O2 Academy

Friday 15 – Wolverhampton, Wulfrun Hall

Saturday 16 – Nottingham, Rock City

Sunday 17 – Glasgow, O2 Academy




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