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Django Django – Born Under Saturn

When Django Django first begin to penetrate the earbuds and radio airwaves in 2012 with their debut Default, they did so by storm due to a truly unique twist on song production, style and song. The four-piece’s approach of kitchen sink concepts stirs together tropic urban jungle aesthetics with holiday-on-the-beach ethics, but with the expertise of a seasoned symphony. The result was a massive, halo effect that seemed to come from another planet, figuratively and literally.

With that penchant for outer worldy themes, be it in their lyrics or sounds, Django Django continues to take you on yet another journey with Born Under Saturn (out May 1 on Ribbon Music in the US, Because Music in the UK) via a B-movie styled rocket ship, decked out in Trader Vic’s tiki decor. Those diamond cut harmonies return fuller and even more glorious than on Default, and percussion is interwoven with those Star Trek beams and other rhythm tricks of their trade.

I may be wrong in my interpretation, but “Pause Repeat” seems to take a stab at our repetitive human nature, how we as a culture continue to repeat mistakes worthy of George Santayana’s quote on the topic, “The lips read the words you’ve been saying for years / Play out the day like a hundred before / Can’t stand reminder / Heaven sold out now it won’t take anymore / Pause Repeat every line in between / It’s a long time since we first began / The start of the end is upon us and now it’s beginning again,” topped off with a slight Brit-Pop, twisted-my-melon-man keyboard lick.

The already popular “Reflections” is indicative of the Django’s bright sound, but this time around they blow sax smoke in your eyes for a slice of darkness in the sun. Life imitates art within the swirl of an album on “Vibrations”, lyrically describing what the listener is experiencing, “Suddenly melodies fall from the sky / Crimson and golden vibrations of paradise.” And then “High Moon” floats perfectly as a soundtrack for slumbering dreams that take you to far away, exotic places.

There are many decades of musical history to inspire any music maker, and Django Django make the most of some of its best elements, but in a highly bespoke way. It is the minds, creative juices and instrumental finesse, organically presented by David Maclean (drummer, producer), Vincent Neff (guitar, vocals), Jimmy Dixon (bass), and Tommy Grace (synthesizer) that carves the band’s own genre niche. In the way that I felt Django Django’s debut Default would top the ‘best of’ lists in 2012 (though I was shocked they didn’t get the Mercury Prize that year), I have every confidence that the Scottish troupe will do it again in 2015 with Born Under Saturn (pre-order link will get you “First Light” and “Reflections” instantly:

Having seen them perform twice, once at the Summer Sundae festival in Leicester in 2012 (still miss that festival) and the following year at Field Day Festival (where they’re playing again this year, along with a slot at The Great Escape), Django Django does indeed replicate their studio recordings in a live setting, including all the quirky tweaks and beats. It’s an experience that’s not to be missed; to have these songs enveloping you while sharing that joy with others is simply magic.

Django Django Tour Dates [UPDATED JULY 27]:

Sat. May 2 – Aberdeen, UK @ Lemon Tree
Sun. May 3 – Glasgow, UK @ Live At Glasgow
Tue. May 5 – London, UK @ Rough Trade
Wed. May 13 – Portsmouth, UK @ Pyramids Centre
Thu. May 14 – Sheffield, UK @ The Plug
Fri. May 15 – Brighton, UK @ The Great Escape – The Corn Exchange (NME presents) – SOLD OUT
Mon. May 18 – Norwich, UK @ Waterfront/UAE
Tue. May 19 – London, UK @ KOKO – SOLD OUT
Thu. May 21 – Bristol, UK @ O2 Academy
Fri. May 22 – Warwick, UK @ Warwick Arts Centre Butterworth Hall
Sat. May 23 – Manchester, UK @ Cathedral
Fri. May 29 – Cologne, DE @ Electronic Beats
Sat. May 30 – Paris, FR @ We Love Green #4 – Parc de Bagatelle
Sat. June 6 – London, UK @ Field Day Festival [Tix]
Thu. July 2 – Gdynia, PL @ Open’er Festival
Sun. July 5 – Normandy, FR @ Beauregard Festival
Fri. July 17 – Henham Park, Southwold, Suffolk, UK @ Latitude Festival
Sat. July 18 – Ferropolis, DE @ Melt! Festival
Tue. July 28 – New York, NY @ Webster Hall [Tix]
Wed. July 29 – Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club w/ Beat Connection
Sat. Aug 1 – Lollapalooza, Chicago
Sun. Aug. 2 – Minneapolis, MN @ First Avenue w/ Beat Connection
Tues. Aug 4 – Bluebird Theatre, Denver [Tix]
Thu. Aug. 6 – Los Angeles, CA @ Mayan Theatre [Tix]
Sat. Aug. 8 – San Francisco, CA @ Outside Lands Festival — SOLD OUT
Sat. Aug. 22 – Hamburg, DE @ Dockville
Sun. Aug. 23 – Biddinghuizen, NL @ Lowlands
Fri. Aug. 28 – Reading, UK @ Reading Festival
Sat. Aug. 29 – Leeds, UK @ Leeds Festival
Fri. Sep. 4 – Larmer Tree Gardens, UK @ End of the Road Festival
Sun. Sep. 6 – Laois, IE @ Electric Picnic
Mon. Oct. 19 – Vancouver, BC @ Imperial
Tue. Oct. 20 – Seattle, WA @ Showbox
Wed. Oct. 21 – Portland, OR @ Wonder Ballroom
Sun. Oct. 25 – Phoenix, AZ @ Crescent Ballroom
Tue. Oct. 27 – Dallas, TX @ Granada Theater
Wed. Oct. 28 – Austin, TX @ The Mohawk
Thu. Oct. 29 – Houston, TX @ Numbers
Sat. Oct. 31 — New Orleans, LA @ Voodoo Music Experience
Mon. Nov. 2 – Atlanta, GA @ Terminal West
Tue. Nov. 3 – Nashville, TN @ Cannery Ballroom
Wed. Nov. 4 – Columbus, OH @ Newport Music Hall
Fri. Nov. 6 – Philadelphia, PA @ Union Transfer
Sun. Nov. 8 – Boston, MA @ Royale
Wed. Dec. 2 – Derry, UK @ Nerve Centre
Thu. Dec. 3 – Glasgow, UK @ Barrowlands
Sun. Dec. 6 – Manchester, UK @ Albert Hall
Mon. Dec. 7 – Birmingham, UK @ Institute


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