3.5 out of 5 stars
On Django Django’s “Wor,” all you can make out in the blanketing fog of spaghetti-western guitars is a panicked voice yelping, “The aftershocks just shook me to the core.” Us too. This S/T debut goes on a bumpy sonic safari from which there are only two appreciable takeaways: Django Django are truly good and truly, truly nuts. More than that, they’re students of disorientation, scanning the pop music of 1970s Nigeria through some weird fog machine.
At times Django Django takes a turn for the paranormal: Fela Kuti’s specter leaps out of the nasty global grooves that score “Firewater” and “Hail Bop.” Yet Britain’s kitschiest, funkiest new band makes psychedelic pop with the rangy reach of internationalists like Delorean or Ozomatli. The golden-battered “Hand of Man” screams mid-’60s American AM radio, but even that song would kill on either side of the equator.
“Skies Over Cairo” is a sashaying birdsong helmed by club rats, with epileptic glitches that practically bathe in strobe light. The record doesn’t pass without lull; “Life’s a Beach,” which splashes around in fizzy reverb, is kind of a wash. But Django Django is worldbeat that sings a communal tune. Once you hear this orgasmic MDMA roll of an album, the band’s unpronounceable moniker makes more sense. Who could be expected to annunciate at a time of dehydrated, swollen-cheeked ecstasy?