March 30, 2013

Review: Django Django @ The Fonda in LA 3/23/13


Django Django successfully ended their American tour at the Fonda on Saturday night, March 23. It’s been a quick rise for this refreshingly unique band, who was a Mercury Prize finalist and who made many year-end lists for 2012. A year ago, they were earnestly playing smaller SXSW venues as relative unknowns the the US. They sold out The Echo last fall, with several hundred onlookers and fans packed in and vibing to a show that was relentlessly electric. Saturday night, the guys expressed several times, their delight in playing on the Fonda stage. The venue holds about 1200, and an estimated 900 were on hand. Django Django attracted a good-natured crowd, as evidenced by the number of smiles on people during the intermission. The set sounded virtually note perfect, with all twelve songs coming from their debut album. The band has quickly moved to expand their show, with compelling lighting and some extended song versions. The tribal “Introduction” appropriately opened the festivities, leading into the popular “Hail Bop” just as on the CD. “Waveforms” has one of the band’s hottest grooves. The guys played an extended version with a nice little acapella section mid-song, followed by a jam that eased them back into the familiar tempo. Virtually every song has a dance feel and when they got to the acoustically based “Hand the Man”, it was a beautiful change of pace. The crowd was with them from the start but it was toward the end of the set when the house really got moving. As Django Django grows, it might behoove them to deliver their set with just a bit more punch to equal the impact they had at The Echo. As the show progressed, their hit “Default” and the garagy “Wor” ended things on an intense note. They returned to play “Silver Rays” for a hotly demanded encore. By Bruce Rave

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