Django Django have pressed the Default button again and returned to their origins. The London band is back, three years after their latest studio album, Marble Skies. It feels like yesterday that David Maclean, Vincent Neff, Jimmy Dixon, and Tommy Grace invited us to their intimate balcony concert. But no. It wasn’t yesterday. Django Django have been around for almost ten years, and for ten years they have revolutionized the concept of art/indie/electronic rock.
Now they present themselves ‘Glowing in the Dark‘, in a mix of thirteen feelings, which transport us on a hallucinatory journey in which redefining our senses seems to be the definite goal. So, put your headphones on, because it’s going to be a long, bumpy (in the best possible way) ride.
Spirals, the first song on the album tells us just that. A first minute that sounds like a typical computer pop-up message where we are still in time to give up this crossing. But we don’t want to give up. Spirals throws us straight into a lunatic spiral: guitars, keys, intergalactic voices shoot us into another dimension that lingers very smoothly between the next two songs on the record, Right the Wrongs and Got Me Worried.
Got Me Worried, also highlights a more zen, danceable moment, reminiscent of The Beach Boys’ Pet Sounds.
We follow the rhythm produced by the London band, reminiscent also, in certain aspects, of music produced in the African continent, and we turn our attention to what feels like an always sensual collaboration just by thinking about it: a round of applause, as the eloquent French-English Charlotte Gainsbourg enters the stage.
Waking Up is the suggested challenge, and with sunshine like this who doesn’t want to wake up early? Charlotte has a unique voice, always well dressed for any occasion. Add to this a bespoke beat delivered by Django Django, and the pairing, that one, is bombastic and an instant classic.
We rush through Free From Gravity, the first single from this album, and where you don’t need too many frills to understand that the voice is also an instrument. And what an instrument!
Next, comes Headrush, a song that characterizes Django Django so well. Both past and new. They have returned to their origins, and these origins make us remember a video game from the 80s. The bass is king and lord in this entry.
The Ark takes us right into the confines of an ark – an ark that is populated with extravagant sounds and emotions, impossible to control. It’s the most experimental version of the London band we find on the record, with a willingness to test more and better, in just under three minutes.
There is also time for a ballad. Yes, a ballad. No electro-pop, electro-rock, whatever you want to call it: two, three chords and voices, lots of voices. The World Will Turn, and I believe it will really turn with this message. Towards the end, we highlight the groovy atmosphere of Kick the Devil Out, a fresh beat prepared for a more generic audience.
Definitely Glowing in the Dark is the song that lives up to the album’s name. The track throws us the phrase on an endless loop on the way to the end. We can confirm that we have glowed a little in the dark – and that this glow has spread to our ears and to the next song in the album, Hold Fest.
To close, Asking for More – the beat reminds us of Metronomy’s “The Look”. But the interpreters are different. And they are the ones we want to keep asking for more because the album should not end here, but with another encore of good and new songs in this musical context.
Glowing in the Dark lives up to its name: it tells us a story, where each song is a well-plotted chapter of this passage. The recommendation is that you should listen to it from beginning to end because this whole cult only makes sense if you follow it from the beginning. And you, are you going to ‘Django Django’ until your sweat glows out?
Listen to Glowing in the Dark: