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REVIEW: Django Django @ The O2 Ritz

The Ritz played as the backdrop the Manchester stop off on the Marble Skies your for Django Django, ably supported by Man of Moon and Self Esteem.

A two-piece heavy bass, drums, and loops & plenty of Cow Bell – a highlight for me being the big synth loops on the last song which sounded bangin’. After buying their CD at the end of the gig (a nice cover of Django’s Waveforms) and upon a quick chat with the band, I found out that they are in fact Scots & Django fans too! I can imagine Man of Moon going down well at many a festival line-up – the band have a good live sound, so bassy in fact that the Ritz dance-floor sprung with vibration and bounce. It’s a shame they were on early as the crowd wasn’t all in by then. Support act life.

It’s the first night of the Marble Skies tour, Self Esteem blares out in all directions as the main support literally march on stage to a blistering bass, drum & vocals. As a band, they sound and look great from the offset. Becca Taylor of Slow Club stands in the middle of the group, all in red and flanked by the rest of the band all in black all with t-shirts saying ‘squirt isn’t pee’ (help me out here readers!). Vocals in a three-part harmony sound excellent and the tribal drums keep it rolling. The band have a bounce and sway which is nearly choreographed in parts yet somewhat naturally rhythmic at the same time. And then a slow ‘floss’ starts –  choreographed and works a treat!

Halfway through theatricals hit the stage – the band turn into Mannequins to check their phones whilst the drummer smashes the beats out of the skins. “This is Self Esteem and we’re gonna do a quiet one now” what follows is a perfect 3 part harmony acapella. Mesmerising. Becca grabs a guitar. And the show continues, finger clicks and claps are the hold steady percussion. They’ve got The Ritz in a trance. And the hip snap happy choreography is in perfect beat to the tunes. They played about 6 songs and said good night. (Becca is back on stage with the Django’s in a little while too.)

Next up the main show – Django Django. Beach Boys kick off the Pre-gig playlist. I’ve always liked how The Beach Boys have influenced the band taking a lot of songwriting and consistently perfect harmonies. The band come on in Cali-friendly pastel and white jeans. “Take us as we are..” Manchester are here for Django Django and they’re gonna bring the sound.

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Aside from the one time I caught them at End of the Road Festival ‘10 this is the first time for me seeing the Django’s at their headline show in Manchester “We love Manchester!..” Together, they sound flawless. The band are so tight and –  credit to the sound engineers – you can hear everything. Every drum beat. Bass note. Every key and harmonium.

Django Django have three large albums in the bag and – with that – an impressive discography. We were saying on the way to the gig that although each album has delivered in its own right, the band have now formed their own sound; Django Django have evolved into a fantastic live band with a long set of different, quality tunes.

One thing to note about Django Django is the regular moving and swapping of instruments throughout the set, floor Tom to the front. Pounding. Guitar for bass and synths… and, like their openers, plenty of Cow Bell. At one point All three of the front section amalgamate around the synths, repeating for the encore.

The setlist is full of bangers and the crowd lap every single bit up. 

Marble Skies, Tic tac toe, First light, Surface to air (and half-way through a rendition of Rapture, Blondie), Waveforms, In your beat, Champagne, Sundials, Default – and the set-list continues… Proper bouncing they loved it and so did the crowd. Two more EP’s for the racks and a top night. Good work Djangos with a band of merry multi-instrumentalists.

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