“Their best yet” – DJ Mag 8/10
“Another roof raising blend of soaring harmonies and thrusting electronica” – The Times
“A fizzing, furious new wave and disco mash-up” – NME
"Feels like a joy ride" – DIY 4*
“A startling return” – Clash
“These tunes make you smile” – Loud & Quiet
“Expertly crafted songs” – Crack
Django Django have made a compelling return to form with their new album Marble Skies released on Friday, January 26 via Because Music/Caroline Australia.
BUY MARBLE SKIES HERE
Now the forward-thinking, genre-blurring quartet can share a video for one of the album’s most immediate tracks Surface To Air.
Directed by Dir Lx (best known for Samantha by Dave x J Hus) the video depicts guest vocalist Self Esteem – AKA Rebecca Taylor of Slow Club – performing the track in a variety of atmospheric settings in an abandoned ghost town just outside of Madrid. Django Django make a fleeting cameo when they’re seen shown on an old school TV set, diving from surface-to-water.
Filtering a Jamaican dancehall influence through a widescreen of dreamy psychedelic pop, Surface To Air is the first Django Django track to feature a sole outside vocalist. Self Esteem contributes sweet seductive vocals which possess the otherworldly qualities of the voice of an imaginary friend.
Dave Maclean and Rebecca Taylor spoke to The FADER about the track and the video:
“The song is about two people trying to suss where they are with each other and figuring what the future holds for them both,” says Maclean. “I always imagined them sitting in a car at the top of a hill at dusk with a large expansive sky in front of them. I love that the video has a dusty, twilight quality near the end, which is how I saw in my head originally.”
“I spent two days in the sun with four cute boys,” adds Taylor. “People did my make-up and hair and I knew I was going to get to keep the coat so I was buzzing. I love making videos a lot. I'm really proud of this song and it's an honour to work with my brothers Django Django.”
Dir Lx further explains the creative process behind the video: “The creative concept for the video came out of a desire to reference Hype Williams’ classic promo style. We wanted to make a hip-hop video, but due to Django’s aesthetic it needed a twist. I played around with setting it in a few different locations and we ended up in this eerie ghost town outside Madrid. The juxtaposition of a hip-hop solo performance set in a visually warped and twisted ghost town felt like nothing I’d seen before.
The town itself was planned with aspirations as a commuter town but when the Spanish financial crisis hit, all development was halted. So now there’s a tiny community living in the centre of an unfinished town. There are bridges that lead to nowhere; ponds and lakes that are empty; tennis and basketball courts left totally unused.
We spent a day working out the best locations for the performance and then had a day for the shoot. Everything was lit naturally, so we only had a thirty minute window to catch the golden-drenched period of the beautiful Spanish sunset”.
Watch the video for Surface To Air Featuring Self Esteem here:
The collaboration came after Django Django and Slow Club met at SXSW in Austin, Texas some years ago, where Taylor and Maclean in particular bonded over shared musical tastes.
Surface To Air is the second collaboration between the two parties. Maclean previously produced the debut Self Esteem track Your Wife which was released on his own Kick + Clap record label.
Marble Skies was picked as BBC Radio 6 Music’s Album of the Day.The album’s first single Tic Tac Toe and the follow-up In Your Beat were both A-listed at 6 Music.
Marble Skies is a more concise and focused offering which recalls the dynamic, genre-blurring music of their debut. It’s a return to form; an album which finds them returning to the handmade, cut-and-paste approach of the past.
Upon finishing the Born To Saturn tour, Dave ventured to LA to work on a production project, whilst the other band members went to India with the British Council. When they returned, the new album process began with a back-to-basics approach which recalled the DIY ethos of the band’s early days, Django Django – minus an absent Maclean – assembled at Urchin Studios in Tottenham, London with Metronomy drummer Anna Prior to experiment with the idea of coming up with new tracks through loose jamming sessions. After ten days of recording, there was plenty of raw material to send up to Dave (then back in his hometown of Dundee) for him to edit, refine and evolve.
As ever, all four band members (completed by Tommy Grace on synths and bassist Jimmy Dixon) contributed to the band’s music, melodies and lyrics as the final album took shape.
If there’s a mood running through Marble Skies, it’s one of reflection on things past and present, and finding some kind of peace with your place in the grand scheme of things.
MARBLE SKIES LISTING:
01. Marble Skies
02. Surface to Air (Featuring Self Esteem)
04. Tic Tac Toe
07. Beam Me Up
08. In Your Beat
09. Real Gone