Burning Bright, There's A Guiding Star: A Listen to Glowing In The Dark By Django Django
Updated: Feb 10
Cruising through the galaxy amongst the stars is Art Rock foursome Django Django and, as they embark on their interdisciplinary audio quest, fourth album Glowing In The Dark via Because Music is blaring out of their spacecraft's stereo. An uncomplicated term, but multifaceted in its meaning, this gem of a record carries ideas of breaking free from personal chains in reality or the mind to crafted sounds that impress.
With a mass of factors pulling us all down in current times, Free From Gravity muses over frustrations on the heavenly drum machined base of verse one but offers a route of escape in verse two: "See the world get madder. As we're lifting off the ground." Outright illustrious tune. Additional triumph Spirals lands straight into synths, speeding in pace upheld by longer notes adding depth. Cymbals crash from David Mclean as the suspense builds, and we recall the rush from that human connection that we long for dearly. Add to the mix a Strokes worthy guitar solo, and, we are there.
The quintet exudes cosmic energy in every track. With the right amount of trippiness, title track Glowing in the Dark dabbles in Acid House; we even greet a love or even an extraterrestrial? "I lay awake at night. It's gonna melt my mind, oh. Your eyes will radiate. They're gonna lead the way, oh." Anything is possible. That mouthwatering indie dance appeal is apparent in other numbers, such as Hold Fast where Jimmy Dixon's canorous bass compliments the lengthy vocal from the honey-toned Vincent Neff and in the Madchester marches of Night Of The Buffalo and Kick The Devil Out.
Jangs are proficient at mingling genres, styles and decades and remain undefinable like Headrush which weaves between the 60s to the present day furnished with elegance to address an unfavourable leader and the jangly thumps of Got Me Worried. Tommy Grace's organ tones are interrupted without apology by rock breaking through carrying surf style riffs and beachy harmonies found in whirlwind number Right the Wrongs: a piece that would suit the early days of MTV. Acting as an interlude in proceedings, instrumental The Ark is a fond memory incorporated in umpteen 90s releases.
Sensual acoustic tones ooze from Waking Up due to the collaboration with Charlotte Gainsborough who tells a story of leaving the past where it belongs for an unplanned future: "Waking up to the fact that we're never coming back, our home is the open road.' The World Will Turn is also in a similar vein as strings, and unaltered beauty gives a minute of reflection.
This message is timely but timeless; Glowing in the Dark is exactly what we need. There is politics, there has to be, but it is the optimism which drives. Asking For More is a reminder of taking a good hard look at what we have and giving thanks: "We had the time of our lives and we are still asking more." With remixes of tracks from experts including MGMT, Busy P and Hot Chip, its psychedelic positivity and obscure composing are astronomical. Allow that weight to float.
Article by Beverley Knight