Immigrant Song

Amidst the mind-numbing barrage of identical-sounding modern rock and pop starlets, it’s nice to come across something different every now and then. Enter Gogol Bordello. As immigrant punk goes, they’re basically your only choice, so be thankful that they’re also badass. Imagine putting Spoon on stage with a polka band and giving the microphone to Borat. Once you take out the jokes about the Jews and the gays, you’re starting to get the idea. Better than Borat, though, this isn’t a put-on to get a few cheap laughs; this is the real deal, fronted by a Chernobyl refugee and eight other immigrants. Now they’ve got a DVD out called Live from Axis Mundi, as well as Filth and Wisdom, a movie featuring the band, but written and directed by Madonna. The critics have weighed in, and you probably won’t be surprised which one they recommend. One is a “double-shot of high-octane folk-rock at its best” and the other features “some clunkingly awful acting and a string of scenes that are so stagey they would fall over if they weren’t propped up by the cinema screen.” Did I give it away?
Tue., Oct. 20, 6:30 p.m., 2009
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Brian Bardwell