So this show was originally scheduled for The Mayan, but somehow I didn’t get the memo that the venue had changed. I was coming from another gig in DTLA and leisurely strolled over to The Mayan before finding out, nope, moved. So with only a half hour until showtime, I rushed to my car and flew down Olympic to make it just in time, and oh, am I glad I did.

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The first time I saw Django Django, it was because I was drawn in by their sound as it wafted across a field in East London. I had every intention of catching the group during their set Thursday night at El Rey, and it just solidified the band’s greatness in my mind.

The energy of the quartet was palpable. Their sound was composed of a variety of different influences and genres all bashing up against each other to create something seamless. They’re like if Simon and Garfunkel met Depeche Mode and they decided to start a drum circle jam session. With rhythms piling on top of each other, their style of percussion is mesmerizing and really rare in rock music today, and I enjoy it immensely.

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El Rey was the perfect venue for a Django Django performance as the old ballroom was the perfect size for the energetic crowd. Everyone was going wild as I rushed to the pit and overheard someone say, “Man, I’m so ready to dance tonight.” And they did! It was a really fun crowd to go along with a really fun band.

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Django Django played a really great retrospective of their work. Though the show was in support of their fantastic new album, Born Under Saturn, the band played an awful lot off their self-titled debut album. “Skies Over Cairo” has always been one of my favorite tracks (I like weird instrumental things), but I really didn’t think they’d play it. But they did! An amazing extended jam-out version of it, no less. In fact, a lot of the songs they played would be expanded upon in a sort of jam-out way. The track “WOR,” in particular, was drawn out in a way that made the performance feel like it may be something these four dudes just do for fun.

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Everyone seemed like they were having a fantastic time up on stage. Frontman Vincent Neff kept on relaying how excited they were to be back in Los Angeles, yelling out our fair city’s name in the way that only the Brits do — “LOS Angeleeeeesss” — like that last “e” is where the emphasis should be.

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The staging was really cool, too. As “Reflections” is about, well, reflections, the staging for the song utilized mirrors, reflecting up to create a triangle. As they played with shadows, colors, and digital projections, you could really feel their artistry.

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I keep mentioning layers because that’s how these guys work. Almost how a visual artist may use oil paints, Django Django uses sound. Producing layer upon layer of sound, dropping in and out, but creating something that all flows together in the end — one complete, magnificent work.

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Find out more about Django Django.