KWCR Album of the Week: Gogol Bordello­­, ‘Pura Vida Conspiracy'

When you hear the band name Gogol Bordello, what’s the first image that comes to mind? For me, images of everything from gypsy punks, which is the obvious answer, to film scenes and road trips pop in my head.

Gogol Bordello wouldn’t be who they are today without leader and frontman Eugene Hutz’s European gypsy days as a major influence. Their newest album, from summer 2013, speaks to these dirty days in the 1990s.

Perhaps his time in the Americas influenced some of the songs on “Pura Vida Conspiracy.” Track No. 3, “Malandrino,” has a distinct Southwestern vibe that just speaks Mexico to me, although ‘malandro’ is actually Portuguese. During the chorus, Hutz sings, “Malandro, malandro, malandrino, I was born with a singing heart.” This is testament to those gypsy days.

Other favorite songs on the album include Track No. 5, “It is the Way You Name Your Ship.” As some of my readers may know, I am a big fan of nautical themes, and anything about ships, the sea and captains is very fascinating. This song is also more tolerable to me.

As with most of the albums, there isn’t a song I dislike or really like more than the others, because they sound very similar. It could be the accented vocals or the accordion, but either way, this album is one of those you can put on shuffle and not miss anything.

Normally when I listened to previous Gogol Bordello albums, it could only be a few songs at a time, a few months apart. Not because I don’t like G.B., because I do, but gypsy punk and polka isn’t necessarily my style. I would defiantly be down with seeing G.B. live at a festival or outdoor show, but sitting in my office and getting my punk on isn’t going to happen.