Monday, January 4, 2010

Gogol Bordello / The Extraordinaires - 9:30 Club - Jan 3 2009

The Extraordinaires - Four guys with neatly trimmed beards, a funny hat, fish shaped guitar... OK, smart and funny band with eclectic style opening for an eclectic headliner. This band was good and did not grate at the nerves at all despite my cynical expectations. Nothing really grabbed me either, but it was fun with catchy enough songs and good playing. They are from Philadelphia.

Gogol Bordello - I have heard the buzz for some time, but this
is my first chance to catch them live, as they should be heard
and seen on stage. This was the second of two sold out shows
and the final show of a lengthy tour. I was not surprised to
see they had plenty of energy to burn as that is a major part of
the act. But first the lights dimmed and then they played almost
fifteen minutes of entrance music. Now I am a fan of cool intro
music, but this was a bit excessive. I heard the Pogues, a gypsy
song, reggae, a hardcore song (Wasted Youth? I am really
pissed I couldn't figure out who) and another song. So they laid
out a long recipe of what they are about in case you had not
figured that out already. Finally, they jump into the set and did
an excellent job. Seven of them bouncing around with a couple
of female backup singers popping in and out. The crowd dug
it as expected and I enjoyed it as well. However, there was
something just a little rehearsed and formal about the
presentation which kind of defies the formula a bit. Whether
that is due to playing big club (gee that has never happened
before) or just a certain comfort and limitation of a rock set,
I don't know. At least they did not line up and do a Rockettes
kick or anything like that. I find bands that are born out of
the Pogues to be a little tricky for me to fully get into and
these guys had some Boiled in Lead stylings in here too, so
in spite of their originality, it is a form where other bands
have also excelled at. But I am being a bit picky. This was
fun and the band is worth seeing for a whole lot of varied
music lovers out there.

Quote of the Night: from a line... "She's trying out for a triathalon and training with a guy who is on her kickball team." Huh?

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