Generally favorable reviews - based on 23 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 23
  2. Negative: 0 out of 23
  1. Plain and simple, Trans-Continental Hustle is a decent album that seems to rest on the band's multi-national roots and Hutz's Balkan growling to accomplish its goal. And while it's certainly an engaging and inspired exercise, the disc grows awfully weary after about a half-dozen songs.
  2. There's plenty good here, that's undeniable, but the album lacks the spark to push it forward and place it at the top.
  3. Considering how much it costs to get Rick Rubin in the producer's chair, it's no surprise Gogol Bordello aim for something beyond full-throttle drunken mayhem on Trans-Continental Hustle. Those worried the party is officially over can rest easy, as "Break The Spell" and "We Comin' Rougher (Immigraniada)" show Gogol Bordello haven't completely forsaken four-on-the-floor folk punk. [June 2010, p.105]
  4. "Last One Goes the Hope" buoys the middle third atop the bar, placeholder for acousti-punk tango "In the Meantime in Pernambuco," new greatest gauntlet. Penultimate "Break the Spell" doesn't.
  5. With the help of heavyweight producer Rick Rubin, Gogol Bordello's major-label debut, "Trans-Continental Hustle," maintains the band's ethno-clash dance party reputation, but with less punk attitude and a more mainstream songwriting approach.
  6. While Trans-Continental Hustle isn't exactly a disappointment, it isn't the thoroughly solid album it could (and should have) been.
  7. Over 13 tracks Transcontinental Hustle casts its spells, a record that fairly howls at the moon.
  8. 78
    Though Hutz might be out of whack, this album is surely no loser.
  9. Hutz has said that Rubin encouraged him to focus on his songwriting as opposed to the band's frantic live show, and "Hustle" bears out that claim with catchier melodies and more slogan-ready lyrics.
  10. Rick Rubin has shaped their songs, smoothing down some of their rougher edges, but the end result is as rich and diverse as ever, helping them fulfill their musical mission with more focus, yet without compromising their eccentricity or their trusted formula.
  11. Musically, it's really just more of the boozy, ribald, shoutalong same, but tellingly the best moments are when Hutz reins in his mentalist troubadour shtick.
  12. It seems Gogol Bordello is still stubbornly clutching for the inventiveness of earlier records like Gypsy Punks: Underdog World Strike and Super Taranta! without truly progressing, leaving us with a Rick Rubin-adorned imitation of their visionary past work.
  13. Results are mixed--"Sun Is on My Side" offers lovely accordion and a weary, haunting refrain, but the midtempo "Uma Menina Uma Cigana" feels flat and perfunctory, while the lugubriousness of "When Universes Collide" actually undermines Hutz's harrowing, poverty-tinged lyrics.
  14. For all the lyrical skepticism in these songs, the music is too damned exuberant to worry too much. If anything, the relentless tempos and sheer energy of the band might wear you out before you get to the end of the hour-long record.
  15. Like all Gogol Bordello albums, Trans-Continental Hustle is instantly enjoyable, but even more lyrical and musical layers emerge on repeat listens that show you just how smart and (simple) Gogol Bordello can be.
  16. There's a human message: No matter where you are, the party's what you make of it. [Jul 2010, p.124]
  17. Everyone is on point: Accordion and fiddle rock as hard as guitars and drums; rhythms from Brazil (frontman Eugene Hutz's new home) blend with breakneck Eastern European dances and D.C.-style hardcore.
  18. Founded on precepts of energy, positivity, and speed, the band has no choice but to keep pushing these buttons, churning out records whose rampant energy belies an increasing sense of atrophying decay.
  19. 70
    It's no Super Taranta!, but Hutz's minor-key odes to erotic revolution and cosmic evolution still pack a heady, sweaty punch.
  20. While Hustle isn't a breakthrough on par with If I Should Fall From Grace With God, it's certainly one step closer.
  21. Trans-Continental Hustle is an honest effort, but one that pales a little when compared to the Technicolor explosions of Gogol Bordello's back catalog.
  22. 60
    The idea was to expand Gogol Bordell's palate to accommodate the Ukrainian-American's recently adopted homeland of Brazil. The Good news is that it doesn't matter--if Gogol Bordello still sound like an Eastern European answer to The Pogues, it still means they're doing something nobody else is. [Jul 2010, p.108]
  23. Transferring the energy and spectacle of their live shows has to be challenging, but the songs here come as close as any of their earlier work. [Spring 2010, p.63]
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 10 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 3
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 3
  3. Negative: 0 out of 3
  1. Aug 10, 2013
    In my opinion, the least inspired album of Gogol Bordello, but yet fantastic. They're style is unique and explosive and they're melodies are so motivating and energetic that you just can't judge their creations! Why? Because their songs may be a little bit repetitive? Because is too noisy? Because their style is a little bit "sloppy"? C'mon, it's just their way of being, they express themselves as they really are! That's a fact that not many musicians can tell! Full Review »
  2. Dec 23, 2011
    Great album, great band! Every time I listen to one of their songs I fall in love with this music all over again! When they tour again I hope to go see them live from what I've heard they're even better! Full Review »
  3. Jan 1, 2011
    This album stretched a little far from the punk part of Gypsy Punk, and we are curious about what we are about to see. But Immediately we realize that we love this album just as much as the past albums. As the first song on the album, "Pala Tute," is a love song to a girl, I think the album is Eugene Hutz's love ode to the place and experiences he has seen and had in his new home. Full Review »