Django Django
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Django Django

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Django Django are kind of mysterious. We don't know much about them, apart from they make really great music that sounds like Dennis Wilson covering Glasgow School era Orange juice. - Hanny Hanra

"10 tracks to check out this week"

These art- school boys from east London are perfectly formed and ready for your love. - NME

"The Guardian"

Django Django ... punk-funk or electro-dance this is not.

The background: Bands with a twice-repeated word as their title are always worth a punt: Duran Duran, Talk Talk, Bourgie Bourgie ... the list is, well, three bands long. And we notice that there hasn't been a BWATRWATT, an acronym you can almost use as an obscure slur, since the 80s, which might say something meaningful about the profligate mentality of that decade. Or possibly not. But anyway, here comes another: Django Django, so-called after one of Django Reinhardt's teachers, who had a terrible stutter and always struggled with the Belgian jazz guitar legend's name when he called the register (or possibly not). The four-piece, who met at art school in Edinburgh and now live in fashionable east London, don't sound very Belgian or jazzy, and the guitars keep a low profile, too. The emphasis is on cadence, although they're not heavy on the electronics, either – punk-funk or electro-dance this is not. In fact, it's quite tricky to explain quite what it is that Django Django do, which is good, because it suggests they're doing something a little bit different.

Even the band can't quite get a handle on what it is they're up to. Basically, their press release, which they penned themselves, is gibberish: "The triple distilled essence (and sensibility) of an artistic huddle of mischievous musicals," is how they describe themselves, going on to extol the virtues of their songs, those "rollicking along sing-a-longs, galloping into disco sunsets like whisky-addled and leather-saddled bandits on the stolen backs of prairie wild mustangs." Yes, well, cheers for that. It's when they get to the part about "kidnapping our attention and taking us full belly circle with a throat and muse-tingling splash of firewater, some of which spills onto the spent ash of an extinguished criminal campfire; a campfire from which a malted barley beat lyrically stirs in the spittooned soot, and is reborn and reverbed, rising phoenix-like with feathers flashing electrically along cable, to be emitted from a surrendering speaker in the delicious form of song", that we understand why Elvis Costello likened music journalism to dancing about architecture. It's not easy being us.

We can tether these prairie wild mustangs a tad. They mix live instrumentation with electronic sounds. Their single Storm has an echoey stomping beat that has the simple, spartan quality of 50s rock'n'roll, as though someone accidentally discovered a sampler ahead of time and left it mouldering in Sun studios. Fire Water makes us think of Canned Heat's On the Road, only with glam-rock handclaps. Zummzumm is like an acoustic Hot Chip, all ricocheting rhythms and tribal chants, if the tribe in question were middle-class students camping in a forest at night for a wheeze. And Love's Dart sounds like a folk group drunk on cider playing Spandau Ballet's Chant No 1. Actually, we take it back: it's piss-easy, this rock-writing lark. - Paul Lester


Django Django is our new favourite band. We really love them. They recorded their song Storm at Audio Underground in StoNu late last year, before they'd even formed. "Myself and Vinny got together at the weekend with the loose brief of trying to record interesting pop songs," says Dave from the band. "The lyrics are based on a story we came up with about a guy and a girl on a road trip that’s going horribly wrong." After the jump they tell us about honey, Hitler and Black Lace.


Dave Maclean: "1. Honey is the only food that does not spoil. Honey found in the tombs of Egyptian pharaohs has been tasted by archaeologists and found edible.

"2. In 1386, a pig in France was executed by public hanging for the murder of a child.

"3. Hitler was a vegetarian."


DM: "My one would have to be Purple Haze [by Jimi Hendrix]. I found this really bright, exciting looking record cover in amongst my dad’s old albums when I was really young and when I put it on I was blown away by how raw it sounded. I was used to listening to Black Lace tapes on my massive walkman, so it was a real turning point. I also dug out the Beatles, Stones, Pink Floyd and um..... the Humble Bums. I think this may be a familiar introduction to great music for a lot of our generation.

Vinny: "I was about 13 or 14 when I heard Radio Babylon by Jack Dangers [AKA Meat Beat Manifesto]. Until that point I'd a pretty traditional outlook on song structure, melodies and instruments, listening to a lot of 60's psychedelic stuff. That song was so exciting and changed a lot of my views. A simplistic two chords change on a massive sounding bass, with cathedral like drums and a 'wooo.. alright' dropped in intermittently. On paper it wouldn't work. But it did, and really emphasised the importance of what a good beat can do for a song. It’s still what I look for in music I love today.

Meat Beat Manifesto - Radio Babylon [mp3] [Buy]


DM: "I wish Duncan Goodhew would return my calls." - Scott Wright


Django Django: "It's hitting things, it's primeval." Charming DIY dance band are your new art-school crush.

In about ten minutes (if you haven’t already seen Django Django around yet) you’re going to have a new favourite band. They’re this a wonderful band from Dalston, who are like something between Orange Juice and Hot Chip, and they’re totally going to be bigger (and more influential, and more relevant) than both of them. The Scottish (mainly) group make really tight indie pop that references dub, acid house, glam rock, motorik and rap, but ends up sounding like nothing but the most perfect British dance music. Which is to say, mindblowing, weird and totally awesome. “We wanna get back to the rock’n‘roll dance music – people want to dance to music that has that live sound. Whether it’s Chicago house or rockabilly, it’s all got a line running through it,” drummer Dave Maclean says.

Chatting over beers in the Pride of Spitalfield, Dave, who’s in his late twenties and is really nice, tells the band’s story: himself, Vincent Neff, Tommy Grace and Jimmy Dixon met at art school in Edinburgh about eight or nine years ago, where they were variously studying painting, sculpture and architecture. Mates from the off, they set up and ran a gallery called the Embassy, and it’s one of these links from the Scottish art scene that gave them their first single, Storm/Love’s Dart, a limited ed 7 on artist Luke Fowler’s label, Shadazz, which is out really soon. Anyway, Dave, who has a background in acid house and reggae, moved down with a few others a couple of years ago, ostensibly to take up a masters in painting at the Chelsea College of Art, but also just to see a new place. In fact, he found himself spending time making weird music at Vinnie’s flat. “I hadn’t played drums in ages, and as soon as I got back with Vinnie, it was just good to get back on the stool. When I think of drummers I like, like her from the White Stripes or the girl from ESG, I prefer that instinctual drumming rather than the technical type. It’s totally that, it’s hitting things, it’s primeval.” Their live show has a reputation for tightness. “It’s how I see it – get in, get the job done, play short little pop songs. The idea was that everything would be stripped back, pure, like these old rock and roll guys like Bo Diddly, with everything there for a reason… It’s a switch from the recorded stuff which is really textured, whereas the live band is pure, like The Monks, y’know – with nothing that doesn’t need to be there. Music just snapping together.”

From the off, Dave’s background in dance music slipped through, though it’s more subtle the “whack on an 808 in Cubase and push the distortion button” approach of most synth-rock bands. Buried deeper, underneath the glam song structures and melody, there’s a real focus on texture and sparseness. “We’re interesting in textures, and the sound of sound – we like producers like Joe Meek and Arthur Russell who loved pop but wanted to make it stranger and more true to themselves,” he says. Unsurprisingly, the band have done lots of remixes, including one for My Tiger My Timing, and also DJ quite a bit, running popular night Bad To The Bone in Bethnal Green. “My favourite song of the last five years is Paul Woolford’s Erotic Discourse, it’s this bonkers acid house tune, that just has two parts – a kickdrum and a bonkers bassline. I love that simplicity – and it’s that simplicity that the best dance songs have, whether it’s Bo Diddly or DJ Rush.”

There’s a really cool experimental, home-made side to Django Django, from their bedroom productions to their cymbal-free drum kit. “I’d imagine you’d be a bit lost, but with a syth and half a drum kit, you’re pushed to do something extra. But it would be nice to have stuff like cymbals. People ae always like Wow it’s really cool you don’t have cymbals and I’m like Yeah, I just couldn’t afford them… So, with an unlimited budget, I’d probably buy cymbals. Sky’s the limit,” he laughs. Later, he says something interesting about the growth of DIY bands in the last year or two: “it’s just a case of If you don’t do it yourself, it’s not going to happen. We want to do it ourselves, and do it our way, and that’s the history of the DIY scene from the punk days to now. Though, the money would be nice, we could buy a cymbal. One massive, massive one.” - Charlie Robin Jones

"Dazed and Confused"

'purveyors of a sound that sways from glitches and beeps to acoustic
follys and country pop with a lot more besides....their songs hint at
something very special indeed....Love's Dart sounds like David Byrne
fronting The Beatles...Storm showcases a retro surf-pop sound that would
impress Brian Wilson.'
- Tim Noakes


Storm/Love's Dart single (Shadazz) - July 2009
WOR/Skies Over Cairo single - March 28 2010



Django Django are a band of four based in London. They released their debut
single, Storm/Love's Dart, in July 2009 and toured and performed throughout
the UK for most of 2009 taking in a number of UK summer festivals including
Latitude, Great Escape and Camden Crawl. They finished 2009 with a run of
tour dates at Manchester’s Warehouse Project and Transmusicales Festival in
France. They started 2010 in a similar vein playing shows throughout the UK
and have been confirmed for a number of festivals in the UK and Europe for
summer 2010, Stag & Dagger (London & Glasgow), Jersey Live, Stop Making
Sense (Croatia), Wickerman (Scotland). Their next single, WOR/Skies Over
Cairo, is released March 29 and are currently recording their debut album.

Skip the Light FanDjango

Django Django The triple distilled essence (and sensibility) of an artistic
huddle of mischievous musicals, the deft purveyors of an acutely infectious
amalgam of neo scoto-irish bop to the pop sentiment. Fruitily looping and
catchily hooking our hungry ears with their finely crafted fly hooks; fly
hooks finely tied and then melodically unknotted, by well feathered
professionals. Songs which strike a fine aural tattoo on our eardrums with
their (as of yet) small yet quite wonderful repertoire of cyclical
compositions; rollicking along sing-a-longs, galloping into disco sunsets
like whisky addled and leather saddled bandits on the stolen backs of
prairie wild mustangs. Kidnapping our attention and taking us full belly
circle with a throat and muse tingling splash of firewater, some of which
spills onto the spent ash of an extinguished criminal campfire; a campfire
from which a malted barley beat lyrically stirs in the spittooned soot, and
is reborn and reverbed, rising phoenix-like with feathers flashing
electrically along cable, to be emitted from a surrendering speaker in the
delicious form of song.