In the late '90s Ukrainian-born Chernobyl refugee Eugene Hütz began assembling a motley crew of Eastern European expats from various New York City bars and loft parties. At the time, Hütz was DJing an eclectic set of Gypsy, flamenco, and other international sounds with the punk-rock mentality of his youth. Soon, Gogol Bordello burst upon the New York scene with a drunken, all-night-party approach, drawing on Hütz's itinerant background and love of rebel cultures. In Gogol's world, manic punk energy meets tribal drums as a dub bass line thumps along and accordion tones flutter above like hummingbirds over the Danube. Typical of the downtrodden throughout history, the group flips a bleak existence into a party: We gonna turn frustration into inspiration/Whatever demons are there, we gonna set 'em free/Such is the method of tribal connection/Of our fun-loving restless breed, sings Hütz on the group's latest album, Super Taranta! Through his impassioned delivery and earthy accent, Hütz's message of unity through music strikes a nerve.
Wonderlust King by Gogol Bordello, from Super Taranta!: