Meet Kultur Shock – multinational ‘Gypsy Punk’ pioneers, led by irrepressible ball of energy and good cheer, Gino Yevdjevich.
Gino was quite the mainstream pop star in his native Bosnia (and the Balkans), when the shelling of Sarajevo began, trapping him in his family’s apartment for two years. He was finally able to flee, first to New York, then on to Seattle.
Instead of reviving his pop career, Gino chose (a full plunge) to reinvent himself, reaching deeper into his heart and Balkan roots, and Kultur Shock was born! They began playing slightly electrified Traditional Folk, to a growing refugee audience, including many a dancing Serb. The fan base quickly widened to Krist Novaselic and Vic Bondi, among others, who then drew in Jello Biafra.
– Then something happened –
A year or two later, they debuted in San Francisco to a sold-out audience at the Bottom of the Hill, packed with almost all refugees and migrants – and a much louder, heavier Kultur Shock. Lineups hail from all over Eastern Europe, Seattle, and even Japan; with a much wilder, more theatrical Gino as ringmaster of all he surveys.
A more punked-out, direct version of their close friends and cousin, Gogol Bordello,
Kultur Shock mixes Balkan folk melodies and bizarre meters with face-melting metal and blood-pumping punk rock in a pagan cauldron of lyrical, obnoxious, and politically irreverent music stew since 1996.
The band released its first three studio records produced by FNM’s Bill Gould on his KoolArrow Records – FUCC the INS (2001 and 20th-anniversary re-master in 2022), Kultura- Diktatura (2003), and We Came To Take Your Jobs Away (2006). Since 2007, Kultur Shock is self-produced and self-released on its own label, Kultur Shock Records. It released Live in Europe (2007), Integration (2009), Ministry Of Kultur ( 2011), Tales Of Grandpa Guru, vol. 1 EP (2012), IX (2014), Live At Home ( 2016), and D.R.E.A.M. (2019).
So here to start is Kultur Shock’s Alternative Tentacles 7” debut. To break the ice and dangle the carrot for our eclectic Tentacle fan base, and reintroduce the now post-Covid Kultur Shock, as they head back across the Atlantic, for their main audience and festival dates, and Stateside down the road. “King” and “Country Mohammed” have been live show favorites for some time, and Alternative Tentacles is pleased to showcase them to our audience. With an all-new album is in the works, with hopefully more vinyl reissues of their past CD-only albums to follow, Kultur Shock is here to stay. We love them so much, it’s the SECOND band with this name on Alternative Tentacles: Dick Lucas’ Culture Shock is the first!