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Django Django

Django Django


Fri, Apr 27, 2018

Doors: 8:30 pm / Show: 9:00 pm

$25 ADV - $30 DOOR

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Django Django
Django Django
Two years ago, Django Django’s producer/drummer David Maclean was standing backstage at a festival in Chicago,
chatting to a group of people, when he happened to raise his eyes skywards. “It was really amazing,” he remembers. “The sky
looked like a massive sheet of marble. We were all just kind of staring at it. It triggered something.”
Maclean immediately made a note of the words Marble Skies, now the title of the band’s third album. It’s a very Django
Django title, following on from their eponymous, Mercury-nominated 2012 debut album and its 2015 follow-up Born Under
Saturn to underline their inherent wonder of all things natural and elemental.
After the rave-shaped grooves and expansive arrangements of its predecessor, Marble Skies is a more concise and
focused offering which recalls the dynamic, genre-blurring music of their debut. Where Born Under Saturn was recorded in
Angelic in rural Northants, in what Django Django regard as a “proper” studio filled with an array of vintage synthesizers, Marble
Skies found them returning to the handmade, cut-and-paste approach of the Django Django album. “We definitely felt like we
wanted to take back control a bit more,” says singer/guitarist Vincent Neff. “The first one was done with a very limited palette
because we didn’t have that much equipment. Then with the second we had everything.”
Having begun life as the bedroom recording project of the Scottish-born Maclean and Northern Ireland-raised Neff,
Django Django evolved into a band with the addition of synth-obsessed Scot Tommy Grace and Yorkshire-hailing bassist Jimmy
Dixon, playing anywhere from small clubs to warehouse parties. The four initially met at Edinburgh College Of Art, though didn’t
properly get going until they had all relocated to London, where things quickly took off for Django Django following the release
of a run of early singles (“Storm/Love’s Dart”, “WOR”, “Waveforms”, “Default”) and their highly-acclaimed debut LP.
Upon their arrival, as a band Django Django were clearly a unique proposition, mixing the US garage rock of The Monks
with the playful sonic voyaging of Beck, and adding a dash of the freewheeling, surrealistic humor of The Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah
In the wake of their debut album’s success, they travelled the world, including visiting India at the request of the British
Council. Elsewhere, Maclean accepted an invitation from Damon Albarn to travel to Mali as part of Africa Express, before all four
members performed a show with Albarn’s amorphous troupe in Marseille.
By the time the tour for Born Under Saturn ended in Australia in January 2016, Django Django were both elated and
exhausted. Maclean flew on to Los Angeles to lend his programming skills to the making of KT Tunstall’s KIN album, then moved
back to his hometown of Dundee for a much-needed rest. In the meantime, the others assembled at Urchin Studios in East
London with Metronomy drummer Anna Prior to experiment with the idea of coming up with new tracks through loose jamming
“It was actually quite refreshing,” says Neff. “Just to have a different drummer and a slightly different sound with the
way they play. Jamming stuff, you could feel immediately if something had a good energy about it.”
At the end of 10 days of recording, there was plenty of material to send up to Maclean in Scotland for him to edit and
refine. It offered him more perspective on the initial part of the process. “They might not have thought that this particular bit
they’d played was any good,” he says. “But it would jump out at me and I would loop it and build on that and send it back.”
Marble Skies sees Django Django, effectively, returning to the recording environment of Maclean’s bedroom, albeit in
the form of their small, equipment-crammed studio in north London. “It’s like a gang hut,” says Maclean. “Kind of like my
bedroom in that flat where we made the first album…just without the bed. We feel like we can just do whatever we want
there.” Through this process the band sets itself apart from many – seeing all four members contribute not only to the music,
but also to the melodies and lyrics.
Parts of Django Django’s third album find them sailing into uncharted territories, not least the driving title track
(propelled by Anna Prior’s drumming), with its echoes of Krautrock and Suicide. By contrast, the trippy upbeat rock of “Tic Tac
Toe,” with its enormous echoing hookline, will excite fans of the band’s rockabilly-influenced elements. It was cut from the same
long recorded jam that produced “WOR” and “Shake & Tremble.” Meanwhile, the hazy Zombies-like summer pop of
Champagne, which explores the joys and ills of alcohol, was inspired by a boat trip on the Seine that the Djangos enjoyed at the
invitation of their label.
The more dance-orientated side of Django Django comes out with the twisted ‘80s electro pop of “In Your Beat” and
the Jamaican dancehall-influenced “Surface To Air,” a dreamy-headed pop song fronted by Rebecca Taylor of Slow Club.
Originally conceived as a duet for Taylor and Neff, it ended up being the first Django Django track to solely feature an outside
singer. “It’s nice to hear those kind of moments,” says Neff. “When you’re listening to an album, it pulls you out of hearing the
same voice for every track.” Another more surprising collaborator on Marble Skies is Jan Hammer, the Czech-born, Americanbased
jazz-fusion and electronic artist who shares writing credits with the band on the floaty “Sun Dials.”
If there’s a thread running through Marble Skies, it’s one of reflection on things past and present, and finding some kind
of peace with your place in the grand scheme of things. This sentiment reaches its peak amid the hypnotic groove of
“Fountains,” with its chorus refrain: “Bigger Than You And Me.” Maclean notes, “It’s just this idea of things constantly turning
and moving on … and you’re just kind of part of it and watching it and helpless to time passing. But sort of becoming at ease
with that.”
Ofelia K is a Los Angeles based singer, songwriter, and musician. Her music has been described as eclectic indie pop and compared to artists like Feist, Sia, Lykke Li, and Lana Del Rey. According to music blog Indie Shuffle, she “floats seamlessly between soft and eccentric,” leaving the impression that “she could transform from starstruck songstress to man-eating siren at any moment.” Her two EPs, Plastic Flower (2015) and Chaos Cave (2016), as well as collaborations with two of EDM’s top producers, Kaskade and Felix Cartal, have garnered her multiple #1’s on Hype Machine’s Popular Chart, millions of Spotify streams, and song placements featured across prime-time television.
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