West Coast contributor Dave Tobias took in Django Django last weekend out in San Francisco and filed this report.
Django Django played a sold out show at Public Works on Friday night, and rocked the house into oblivion. Entering the show, I wasn’t sure what to expect. Their underrated self-titled debut has a plethora of disparate influences, drawing comparisons to acts as divergent as the Shins, Yeasayer, Hot Chip, and the Stone Roses. While they have not garnered a lot of support State-side, they were nominated for the Mercury Prize in the UK, and with a date in as international of city as San Francisco, it’s not a surprise that they could fill a venue with 500 eager concert-goers.
Their live show is scripted, with matching “uniforms” of tie-dye shirts and a light show projected directly onto the band from stage-level (see picture). It casts shadows of the band members on the back wall, providing a depth of movement to the band’s rather stagnant members. It was a cagey move given that Django Django’s music in the live environment induced rhythmic-to-the-point-of-chaotic movement from the majority of the crowd.
Musically, the band drew pretty heavily early in the set from Krautrock, defining themselves as distinctly European and making me think of Joy Division. As the set drew on, they transitioned into their more relevant dance-rock, and I began to wonder if Django Django could be the UK’s answer to Animal Collective. They are certainly early in their career, but already comfortable and adept in their musical prowess and stage presence. Movements and set changes were well placed, and there was a certain flow to the performance that very few bands can match after only releasing one album. The crowd responded by moving, shaking, and gleefully sharing their approval with the band most certainly on the rise. I’m excited to see the direction Django Django take with subsequent releases, but was already satisfied with what I’ve shared with them thus far.
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