The Beatles forever changed the way that bands record albums. Paul McCartney once said of their recording process, “We would say, ‘Try it. Just try it for us. If it sounds crappy, OK, we’ll lose it. But it might just sound good.’ We were always pushing ahead: Louder, further, longer, more, different.” The Beatles, however, had the access to equipment and studio time that most musicians cannot boast.
Django Django, who just coyly announced their third studio album, don’t like the studio. The Beatles set themselves apart with technique. Django Django and other bands, like Tame Impala, set themselves apart with location. After recording their second studio album in a studio, as opposed to the bedroom in which they recorded their first, the band decided to go back to square one. The gang reported today via Instagram that they’ve rented space in a Tottenham warehouse to record their third album, Marble Skies.
“It’s where we all come to just mess about,” says producer and drummer David Maclean. “You can do what you want to do without worrying about clock-watching or studio fees. To me, the last album felt a bit bloated.”
The pressure of a studio can be a lot for a young band, and understandably so. The industry is headed in a more DIY direction. More people than ever can make music at home and get it out to the public through a variety of platforms. Django Django, who combine a rockabilly sound with electronics, are as much producers as they are instrumentalists. The producing side to their music doesn’t necessarily require the expensive equipment of a studio. Though the Beatles might be an exception, a band needs to be in a healthy environment in order to produce good work. Worrying about time and money (which the Beatles in their later years never had to do) can sufficiently detract from creativity.
Maclean, the aforementioned drummer and producer, only drums for one track of Marble Skies. Having to leave briefly for personal reasons, Maclean focused on producing, while Anna Prior sat with the band in person.
“Anna’s a real drummer. I’m a producer and I do a bit of drumming, but I’m by no means a proper drummer,” says Maclean.
True, the Beatles hardly spoke to one another as they recorded The White Album, but that Django Django are able to amicably record together from around the world is a testament to the modernity of the music industry and of their sound.