Marquee Memories: Eugene Hütz of Gogol Bordello

If you've been to a Gogol Bordello show, you know it's an unparalleled live music experience. You don't mix up the details of a raucous, theatrical, gypsy punk party with, say, a subdued indie rock concert. When the band came through LA, we were thrilled to have Eugene Hütz in to regale us with a few of HIS standout live show moments. Watch as he shares about the raw power of Sonic Youth, his first experience with Hare Krisna hardcore and the Fugazi song that catapulted him into the stratosphere - both metaphorically and literally:

Sonic Youth

"Sonic Youth. It was in Ukraine, in Kyiv. It was extra special because it was in Kyiv in Ukraine, because of just juxtaposition of like Soviet enforced culture and this absolutely outrageous kind of Velvet Underground on 1000% maxed out volume. They were on their Daydream Nation tour. I don't think anybody really knew about Sonic Youth at that time, outside of like, you know, a cult. What struck me about that show? I mean, first of all, the music was absolutely singular. Kim Gordon was very powerful performer. Kim was just going absolutely bananas. She was like such a strong front person, you know? They had a like pile of guitars on stage, like logs of wood. This is a craft, you know, these people like roll up their sleeves and get down with it. It's not about the glamour of it, like it's like dirty pants, had that vibe, you know? Like there's just like, here's all these altered tuned guitars, and Lee would pull out one guitar and like play it and like throw it back into the pile, you know? And then Thurston would pull out another guitar. It was a new incarnation of punk that we were like really jazzed to experience."


"So the second one is Shelter, hardcore band from New York. As soon as I came to the States I met a group of kids who kind of took me under their wing and they were like, "Hey, you want to go and see a hardcore show with us?" and it was Shelter. I was like, "Wow, what's happening?" Like, they had all these like Hare Krishna books and pamphlets with them and they had the look that was reflecting that, you know? They had like, you know, in Ukrainian called oseledets, so that's very Hare Krishna thing. I was like, "Wow! This genre is like making quantum leaps every week. Now it's already like a Hare Krishna hardcore happening." It was a powerful subculture."


"I mean, I've seen Fugazi probably over a dozen of times. This one was actually just in a university cafeteria, probably fit about 400 people and I think we packed 700 into there. It blew my mind because it had all these influences from Europe. This album came out, "Steady Diet of Nothing." There was a song "Reclamation" on it that really struck me in particular, because the intensity of its beginning and it creates unbelievable magic, and I thought like all I wanna do is go to Fugazi's show and hear "Reclamation" song live. Like, I'm gonna literally catapult into stratosphere just on that alone. Fugazi comes on and they start with "Reclamation." Apparently I wasn't the only one who came there with that intention, so I was like in the beginning of the crowd and like five seconds later I was almost outside of the building. It was just like the catharsis that it brought on out into the crowd. It was beyond comprehensible. That kind of dramatic experience just cannot be forgotten and it's just kind of reshaped my idea of what music can do for me."
Check out some live photos from their show in LA, and see where you can catch them on tour next here.
Gogol Bordello live in Los Angeles

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