Django Django are master experimenters on “Born Under Saturn”

Django Djano’s “Born Under Saturn” revels in the beauty of tranquil harmonies as much as it envelopes itself in new territory.

The British art-rock quartet’s sound lands squarely in the realm of synth-dance music, but the difference lays in their cool harmonies – think of the Beach Boys under a psychedelic black light.

Vincent Neff’s smooth, layered vocal workings remind us that while life is homogenized and often oblivious to negativity, human emotions are messy, and that’s to be celebrated.

The band wraps in ‘80s progressive-tech influences, adding Jamaican and African rhythms, forming a hybridization of sonic layers that Django Django handles with ease.

Django video 2The vintage progressive-synth notes of “Shot Down” are further cultivated on the electric-dance notes of “First Light.” The sultry sax on “Reflections” brings in a jazzy art-rock feel that warms up its chilled space-rock synthesizer.

Vegas kitsch kick-starts the percussion sound in “Found You,” while “4000 Years” is straight biker-chic comic-book rock. Traditional slow piano and swooning drums color the hometown sound of “Beginning to Fade.”

The astral “High Moon” gives space to that place between darkness and dawn, creating a digital landscape of satellites, blazing sun and shades of night.

On “Break the Glass,” xylophone surprisingly follows an upbeat guitar strum, creating one of the album’s strongest electro-dance numbers.

The scorching, slow build of “Born Under Saturn” establishes Django Django as funk-synth grand experimenters, and is as an example of how to blaze new territory while in a landscape of indecisive subgenres.

The album is out now on Ribbon Music.

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Filed under Art rock, Dance-Synth, New Music, Review, Synth pop

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