Evidently not a band with idle hands, quite how Django Django found time to self-produce ‘Born Under Saturn’ amid the constant touring of their Mercury-nominated Debut, running the ever-intriguing Kick+Clap label and exploring Mali as part of Damon Albarn’s Africa Express is no minor achievement.
Inspiration is clearly running high, with opener ‘Giant' and its cosmic piano stomp marking a bold return; an album highlight packed with shuffling grooves, resplendent surf guitar twangs and celestial choirs. Honing their experimental side yet with more choruses than their debut, the overall vibes of a Vitamin-D doused Brian Wilson remain strong as ever on album two.
Djembe drums and snaking synth melodies prevail on the brilliant, Sax-infused ‘Reflections’ (sounding like a Hacienda-bound Panda Bear) and elsewhere, the acoustic strums of their debut are often replaced with more immediate surf guitar (‘Shake And Tremble’).
The erratic rhythms and multi-tracked melodies seem befitting of the bands clearly petite attention spans, and as with Hot Chip before them, the art-school music fanatics have their sights on the dancefloor.
For a band consisting of four members, ‘Born Under Saturn’ is both remarkably adventurous and eclectic. At 14 tracks, perhaps a little trimming could have been possible, but, as anyone who has seen Django live will know, this is a band that greet sprawling jams with open arms. ‘Born Under Saturn’ will surely allow Django Django to continue evolving on their own terms, on their own planet.
Words: Clarke Geddes
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