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Universal acclaim- based on 276 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 7 out of 276

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  1. May 14, 2013
    Haters beware. This is the album that change your entire outlook on Vampire Weekend. Gone are the peppy, Afrobeats and Synths that dominated the first two records. Gone (for the most part) are the ivy-leaguer lyrical references. Instead Vampire Weekend gives us their most concise, beautiful, and varied album. Difficult without actually challenging the listener, because the pop hooks are so good. Through and Through it's still a Vampire Weekend album; you can hear it in the "M79" strings of "Don't Lie" or the up-tempo "a-Punk" beat of "Unbelievers," but this album takes those ideas found in previous albums and takes them in interesting directions. There is never a dull moment on the record; the songs continually shift and distort until their conclusion. I can't think of a better album or direction Vampire Weekend could have taken. Easily their best work yet, and quite possibly the album of the year already for 2013. Expand
  2. May 14, 2013
    This is one of the most beautiful album of 2013. Unique and really interesting lyrics with a beautiful rhythms. These rhythms are really catch the human's soul and don't release until song is ending. Unquestioningly that's a catchy album. Love it.
  3. Jul 28, 2013
    One of the best albums of 2013. I found myself listening to it over and over again. The lyrics are deep and meaningful and the songs range from hauntingly beautiful to fun and catchy. I wasn't a fan of Vampire Weekend before this album but Modern Vampires of the City has made me a believer. Do yourself a favor and listen to this fantastic album!
  4. May 16, 2013
    Any band that can produce three great albums in a row deserves respect. Modern Vampires of the City is a testament to Vampire Weekend's continued relevance in today's ever changing music industry. I believe that future generations will remember them as one of the most notable bands of this generation. Poppy but not annoying. Catchy but not saccharine. This album is an evolution for Vampire Weekend, and it is their most varied album to date. Still, there is an underlying cohesion that effortlessly ties the varied songs together. It is an early contender for album of the year, but there are other great releases to anticipate in what remains of the year. This is just one music lover's opinion. Take a listen and make your own judgment. Expand
  5. May 19, 2013
    This is, seriously, Vampire Weekend's best album to date!! At 12 songs, the album is altogether catchy, thought-provoking, and even at times, disturbing. Lyrically, the album is ingeniously made and all the tunes are expertly crafted. I've been waiting for this album for some time now, and after finally hearing it, I can safely say that this is the group's best album and one of my favorite albums ever!! Expand
  6. May 15, 2013
    amazing record, really more quiet sound but vampire weekend pull it off, the lyrical content is really deep and metaphorical on this record really more grown up sound overall, the records sounds pretty perfect to me
  7. May 22, 2013
    Before Modern Vampires, these guys were a guilty pleasure. Fun and catchy as hell, but phony and often shallow. All that's gone now. What we get is essential, beautiful and adventurous indie pop, sophisticated songwriting and emotional lyrics. Can't get enough of it.
  8. May 16, 2013
    MVOTC is an album that throws almost everything you know about Vampire Weekend out the window and starts fresh. It's inviting, creative, and overall unlike anything I've heard this year. Koenig's songwriting remains my favorite part of the band, especially with songs like Step and my favorite track Hannah Hunt. There is something so mysteriously beautiful about Hannah Hunt that I can't quite put my finger on but the emotion it forces you to experience is almost heavenly and leaves you numb. The first half of the album is better than the second half but overall it is an LP you can't afford not to listen to. Hats off to Vampire Weekend for experimenting with a feel they have not yet done and their resulting accomplishment is fantastic. Expand
  9. May 14, 2013
    Their best work yet.

    If "Vampire Weekend" was their freshman year, and "Contra" a sophomore effort, "Modern Vampires of the City" is an upperclassman affair. Punctuated by both pop-centric tunes and deep cuts, the album is nearly faultless in its diversity.

    Stand out tracks: Unbelievers, Everlasting Arms, Ya Hey
  10. May 14, 2013
    Awesome effort by VW. They manage to keep things fresh, while still maintaining their charm. Album highlights include: Obvious Bicycle, Diane Young, and Ya hey.
  11. May 16, 2013
    Modern Vampires of the City is an explosive third record by Vampire Weekend. It's easily some of the smartest, ambitious, and catchiest pop music I've heard in quite some time. Vampire Weekend went from preppy, polo-wearing self-indulgent young men that really enjoyed their afro-pop records to now older gentlemen that can't seem to shake off the feeling of death at every corner. It's a huge maturation that they hinted at with Contra, but now seem to fully embrace with this new record. The production this time around is much more ambitious, and Ezra's lyrics and vocals have matured as well to even more bliss.

    All In All, Vampire Weekend craft their biggest record yet, and is so far my favorite of 2013. A-
  12. May 16, 2013
    Vampire Weekend's latest effort epitomizes everything that a rock album should be in the year 2013: energetic, moving, and feeling fresh, while undoubtably showcasing a plethora of influences. From "Tusk" era Fleetwood Mac ("Finger Back") and "Remain in Light" era Talking Heads ("Everlasting Arms") to a sound that's uniquely Vampire Weekend ("Unbelievers"), the group of former Columbia students have become experts of their craft on "Modern Vampires of the City." Without a doubt, Ezra and co's newest album came perfectly in time for the summer and will definitely stand the test of time. A must-have. Expand
  13. Jun 19, 2013
    There are just so many things I can say about this album. But for the life of me I just cant figure out how to say them. All I can really express is how this album may be the most important piece of music I have ever listened to. There is so much beauty in the minds of Ezra, Rostam, CT, and Baio. The four of them plus additional producer Ariel Rechtscaid have created a spectacular record that I believe will never be forgot. Expand
  14. Jun 2, 2013
    One of two best release of this May release. Vampire Weekend shed their Afrobeat signature and replace it with something totally different. If you really into Contra and their debut album, it might take some spin to swallow it through. Highlight tracks: Step, Diane Young, Worship You
  15. N10
    Dec 2, 2013
    Absolutely fantastic, my personal favorite indie rock record this year, album of the year material. Screw it, one of the better records of the past decade. Lovin' it!
  16. Feb 25, 2014
    Vampire Weekend's Modern Vampires of the City is all kinds of brilliant; with great lyrics, a fantastic production and incredibly beautiful instruments, choral verses and vocals - this album is well worth a listen to. But unfortunately, the album is unable to get a 10 out of 10 score due to the annoying high-pitched vocal effects in Ya Hey, which I feel ruin that brilliant song, and also due to the forgettable Everlasting Arms, which I feel is the weakest song on the album. Flaws album, this is a fantastic album. Expand
  17. Jul 12, 2013
    This album takes all the elements about Contra that really developed the band’s sound, and keeps going in that direction while simultaneously, to some extent, abandoning key elements of their original style more something that’s a bit more refined, a bit more mature, and overall another step in the right direction. No matter which album you look at though, one element that runs through all of them to me is how, as broad and sometimes overused as this sub-genre tag is, Vampire Weekend is the absolute epitome of “indie pop”. While always being chock full of catchy hooks & usually having a lot of accessibility, they’re also never afraid to experiment or throw in a few unorthodox elements, and you can always tell there’s a lot of effort & creativity being put into the songwriting in creating these sets of great pop tunes that, while easy to get into, always have a certain bite to them, whether it be with infectious hooks, fun energy or emotional resonance.

    The latter in particular is in my opinion the main improvement of this album in comparison to their previous work: the lyrics & moods. While not entirely devoid of substance, the emphasis of those albums, especially on the debut, seemed to be on just a group of cool upper-class college kids writing fun upbeat pop songs. Which is fine & all, but it seems like on MVotC something suddenly clicked in Ezra's brain that made him really get in touch with his sincere & vulnerable side, and as a result his lyrics became more interesting to read into & possibly connect with. One highly recurring theme here is Koenig’s strained & almost antagonistic relationship with religion, particularly on track like “Unbelievers”, “Worship You”, and more subtly & symbolically on various other tracks that are a bit harder to decode. Even though I’m a Christian myself I can appreciate anti-religious messages as long as they’re handled with a sense of intelligence & class. Fortunately that was the case here. “Unbelievers” is a song that to me can be interpreted in one of 2 ways: either it’s an “atheist love song” of sorts about a couple willing to undergo together the slight sense of shunning in society atheists tend to get for, or from the point of view of an atheist man dating a religious woman & struggling to keep that difference from getting in the way of things too much. Either way it’s a pretty engaging situation to think about. “Worship You” is a much more standard track pointing out valid hypocrisies of some of the worse religious people out there & why some people have a certain level of vendetta against organized religion altogether. Aside from that, other interesting tracks lyrically include the complicated & metaphor-flooded “Step,” which on multiple occasions compares a man’s relationship with his significant other to that of his relationship with his music collection/tastes. One more lyrically notable track is the opener “Obvious Bicycle”, which details a socially bankrupt man with seemingly little meaning to his life pandering to the greedy businessmen of the world to get by. It’s a descriptive character piece that I’m sure a lot of people could relate to in this day & age. Both in the previous cases & with this there’s a lot of sincerity & sentimentality put into the messages, and I hope to see this kind of emotional openness reappear on the band’s future work.

    My favorite track here, and one of my favorite songs of 2013 period, is Diane Young, a fantastically catchy, upbeat & kinda insane conglomeration of sounds that to me sounds like what would happen if Elvis was still alive in 2013 & listened to a lot of Pitchfork-promoted indie rock bands, and maybe an EDM producer or 2. And it’s all done with this carefree & bombastic attitude that I can’t imagine anyone not enjoying to some degree. Lyrically it’s not one of the more overflowing songs substance-wise, but it does have a cute little homophone-wordplay title & some clever lines about living life to its fullest if the titular fate won’t faze you. Going back to how the album is musically though, this album is probably the band at their most creative ambitious & probably at their most diverse, if not at around the same level as that of Contra. However, MVotC seemingly shows a mindset shift in their creative process, thinking more “let’s write a set of great tracks that flow together well” than “let’s see how crazy we can get in this one style incorporating this element here”, though the latter does admittedly pop up on a couple tracks here & there. Still there are definitely changes between tracks, between slow & sentimental tracks, steady mid-tempo grooves on tracks like “Ya Hey” (which incorporates these weird chipmunk-like backing vocals that while annoying at first grew on me a bit), a few that just go bonkers tempo-wise, and the downright creepy semi-closing track “Hudson”.

    One thing’s for sure on Modern Vampires of the City: Vampire Weekend isn’t even close to creatively bankrupt yet. 95/100
  18. Jul 29, 2013
    It seems like just yesterday that the four New Yorkers made a surprisingly big impact on America’s indie music scene with their self-titled debut, but Vampire Weekend has already come back for a 3rd album with Modern Vampires of the City, half a decade after their sudden success. And thinking “that was so long ago?” now is understandable since the band has never really departed from their roots; even the remarkably darker Modern Vampires has a couple of tracks that are quite exactly in the style of their first two major releases. But let’s not draw the curtain over it: Vampire Weekend sound really fresh and renewed with their new album while their not-that-altered-after-all style makes it clear that Ezra, Rostam, Chris, and Chris are still able to find the same amount of pleasure in making music as they did when writing noughties classics like Oxford Comma or Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa. While the unbelievably smoggy New York on the CD cover could have induced you to expect a darker album, Modern Vampires is, with a few exceptions, quite buoyant, after all. Frontman Koenig is, for example, singing his lyrics so fast in Finger Back or Worship You that the accompanying booklet is necessary to understand everything. And in fact, songs like those two are, even though they are likely the two weakest songs on the album, really important in preventing the album from becoming dreary. On other songs like Hudson, Hannah Hunt or Young Lion, the band’s nature gets some modification as well and while all of this isn’t a Standing on the Shoulders of Giants-esque change in tone, it is still a very entertaining and very well-done new approach to their music. What also made me like it more than Vampire Weekend and Contra are the more understandable lyrics (barring Finger Back that is cryptic), however, rummaging through the internet during the first listening session is supposably still indispensable. Anyway, the songs provide even greater fun if you manage to comprehend (or basically just interpret because we don’t actually have proof for RapGenius’ annotations or the like) them and I’m willing to bet that they’ll land on your iPhone library just in a matter of days. It’s admittedly hard to make a step forward from two albums that were as great as their two previous ones, but while not continuously as good as their career highpoints Diane Young or Hannah Hunt; Modern Vampires of the City is an immensely fulfilling follow-up that you will soon adore for pretty much anything that you can adore about music. Expand
  19. Oct 15, 2013
    Best Vampire Weekend album to date. Captures what has made them so memorable in the past. However, the album also incorporates new things that VW haven't touched upon in the past. Very rewarding listen.
  20. Jul 20, 2013
    This is one of the best albums of the Year!! Lyrically haunting, emotionally deep and superb in every other aspects. Do yourself a favor, and listen to this, your ears will thank you!
  21. May 15, 2013
    They say you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, and I’ve always assumed the same to be true for albums. Really cool album art doesn’t necessarily ensure that the album within will be good, and vice versa. That’s seems like a simple fact. I’ve always tried to let musicians’ visual imagery take a backseat to their music. But Vampire Weekend is a different story because their visuals are so inviting. As a band, Vampire Weekend has always been obsessed with the thematic aesthetics that surround their music. Each of their album covers feature the same block letter font and white trim, giving their catalogue a visually cohesive, instantly collectible look. Additionally, each cover captures the mood of the album it represents. The image of the blurry chandelier hanging above what looks like a college party that served as the cover to the band’s debut spoke to the restless youthfulness at play on that record. The confused looking (and in the end, litigious) model on Contra’s cover reflected the band’s progression into a slightly darker, more complex sound, both lyrically and musically....

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  22. May 25, 2013
    A fantastic record from start to finish. Modern Vampires is a solid, confident and intelligent album from a band that finally is starting to show some maturity and breadth. Their best effort to date.
  23. May 20, 2013
    What an amazing album, an engrossing 3rd chapter that makes for an enjoyable listen along with the past two albums. It's a concrete step forward for Vampire Weekend that has already managed to get me excited for whatever the band is gonna do next! but thankfully I have 3 incredible albums to listen to while I wait.
  24. May 16, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Wow! Vampire Weekend is a new discovery for me and I don't know why I never listen to this group before!! Their songs are all unique and in each song there is something special and different than the others Great album! Love it! Expand
  25. May 18, 2013
    A bold and confident album. The guys sound like they're making exactly the music they want to make and having fun while doing so. A bit more mellow on balance than their first two albums, so if you're craving the up-tempo pop that dominated their first two albums, this won't scratch your itch. But if you're looking for well-crafted music that'll make you stop what you're doing and pay close attention, it will. Expand
  26. May 27, 2013
    Its been 17 days since "Modern Vampires of the City" was released. I don't know about you but i've been giving this record a whole lot of attention and i have got to say i am impressed. Vampire Weekend has been releasing great music since their debut self titled album dropped in 2008. The band also took a huge step forward by truly forming a unique sound with their sophomore album "Contra". With this new record it's clear that they knew what they had to do to perfect a sound that no other band has. LP3 opens with "Obvious Bicycle" a great way to begin this album this track is full of cool harmonies and awesome synthesized effects with some great lyrics. The second track is Unbelievers" and this is one of my favorite songs that Vampire Weekend has released. its rememberable, catchy, and just hands down amazing. Track Three is titled "Step" which is one of the tracks they released first. This track might be my favorite track Vampire Weekend song to date. it is just beautiful from start to finish. it has amazing instrumentals and perfect lyrics, definitely a highlight of the album. Track four Diane Young" another single they dropped. This track is another perfect track with really funky creative fun instrumentation and crazy cool lyrics. Track number five "Don't Lie" is another track that has phenomenal lyrics and a fun melody. Along with tracks Unbelievers" and Worship You", Don't lie is a track where you can tell the lyrics that seem like they have to do with personal religious beliefs. you can really tell they put all their heart into making these songs which is what i believe is the most important thing in making music. track six "Hannah Hunt" this is song has a phenomenal breakdown which just makes this track so much more incredible then it already was before the breakdown. Another perfect track from this album. Track seven Everlasting Arms" my personal favorite from this album it's just so fun and so inspirational it shows that not all songs have to be super complex. i also love the way they use vocoder on this song. Track eight Finger Back" this track starts off with a very poppy fun rhythm and to me feels most like their older music. i also love the chorus. However the bridge i am not to fond of but besides that i really enjoyed this track. Track nine my least favorite track on this record i like the lyrics and i don't think it's a bad song it's just not my favorite. Track 10 Ya Hey" i really like this song and it's funny because i have heard people say they don't like the chorus but i actually think it's my favorite part of this song. Track 11 "Hudson" this song has a spooky feel to it and i love it. In my opinion it's the best way they could've ended the album i actually think this song should've been the last song on this album. The final track on this album is called "Young Lion" this song has a really nice classical piano feel to it what i enjoy i just think it could have been better, but i don't get me wrong i do like this track. This album is amazing and very close to perfect if this album had maybe a couple more songs like "Unbelievers" and "Diane Young" it would've been a perfect 10. I give Vampire Weekend's third full length album "Modern Vampires of the City" a solid 9 out of 10. Expand
  27. Jun 13, 2013
    For a band that made its name by being the refreshingly unique, Afro-pop-influenced group that birthed the rambunctiously catchy single “A-Punk,” you’d think Vampire Weekend would have run out of ways to continue evolving.

    You might think that, but you’d be wrong.

    On 2013’s “Modern Vampires of the City,” the quartet of fresh-faced East Coast rockers have perfected their
    almost-purposefully imperfect sound and created what is the band’s most mature album to date.

    Don’t be fooled, though; the record is still filled with frontman Ezra Koenig’s classic pseudo-nonsensical lyrics, rhythms that will have you tapping your feet and musical motifs that sound like they’ve been lifted from a 17th-century baroque piece.

    Still, the group whose prior releases embodied the sheer liberty of youth seems to have taken a large step forward into the realization that as life goes on, drinking horchata in a balaclava and gazing out the window into an Ivy League courtyard start to seem less and less important.

    On “Step,” the restrained, introspective first half of the album’s dual-lead singles, Koenig sings of youth but from an entirely different perspective than on prior releases. “Wisdom's a gift, but you’d trade it for youth,” he croons.

    Similarly, on the dreamlike, borderline-stream-of-consciousness track “Hudson,” the singer again takes a stab at Father Time. “The time has come, the clock is such a drag All you who change your stripes can wrap me in the flag,” he chants all before transitioning seamlessly into the piano-laden “Young Lion,” where Koenig, in a hushed tone, repeatedly sings the line, “You take your time, young lion.”

    The album isn’t entirely filled with coming-of-age mantras about getting older, though. “Finger Back” has all the bounce of tracks like “Cousins” and “Walcott” (multi-instrumentalist Rostam Batmanglij absolutely shines on the album) and “Diane Young” (a not-so-veiled play on the words “dyin’ young”), is the perfect summer anthem especially if your summer is spent cruising with the top down of your dad’s old ’92 Saab 900 on your way to Montauk.

    For all its quirks and oddities, Vampire Weekend has gone from the tongue-in-cheek, wanderlust-obsessed band you fell in love with and finally found a home while still managing to remain true to who they’ve been all along.

    Full of heart and not afraid to take chances, “Modern Vampires of the City” proves that the band’s fleeting sound is absolutely permanent.

    Rating: 9/10
  28. Jun 18, 2013
    Stunningly beautiful, delightfully unique, and deceivingly simple, this album may go down as Vampire Weekend's best. The songs transition so beautifully that the album is over before you know it and you aren't even sure which song was your favorite. The songs' seeming simplicity belie masterful song-craft on the part of Ezra Koenig and Co. What really brings this album together, however, is the lyrics. The musicianship is so impressive that you can, and most likely will, go several listens without even paying attention to the words the songs are that beautiful but when you do take the time to listen to what is being sung, you will discover the most mature lyrical themes of this band's entire catalog.

    Perfect chamber pop. 9/10
  29. Jul 10, 2013
    I got so excited for this album to come out! I've listened to it almost 4 times since release! I think this could be their best album overall! Best tracks in my opinion: Unbelievers, Diane Young, Ya Hey
  30. Feb 5, 2014
    Few albums in 2013 were crafted as intelligently as Vampire Weekend's "Modern Vampires of the City." The album bursts with creativity and technical brilliance. Coruscating and groovy tracks like "Diane Young" and haunting but rhythmically bright tracks like "Unbelievers" and "Ya Hey" both serve as a testament to this album's efforts to not succumb to the popular trends of past musical styles, but instead, carve out its own name (while maintaining the integrity they have established in their past two albums). Vampire Weekend has set new standards that will be hard to beat for any upcoming alternative albums this year.

    FINAL SCORE: 92.5 (almost perfect -----o--------------- perfect)
  31. Jul 23, 2013
    Vampire Weekend crafts another lyrically stunning album, delivering a wide variety of dynamic and spontaneous songs. The band strikes a near perfect balance in making catchy, yet still meaningful songs. Do yourself a favour and listen to this album, you will not be disappointed.
  32. Dec 5, 2013
    Three albums in, Vampire Weekend still haven't lost their edge. While their last album had a concept about a breakup that sends Ezra's brain on all sorts of crazy tangents, this one is a more controlled statement that mainly deals with Ezra's religious beliefs. It doesn't have any irrelevant mini-concepts like The Clash, or the Contra video game, or Nicaraguan revolutionaries, although it does have the random Vampire Weekend weirdness that always shows up in their lyrics. Like the music ones first Lil Jon, then Kanye West, and now Modest Mouse and DragonForce. What do these things all have in common? Everybody knows I'm a moster! (But seriously, the thing is that none of those artist references have anything to do with the rest of the song, not that they really have to).

    Since the album has religious themes, sometimes also atheistic or agnostic, you'd expect church instrumentation a la Arcade Fire's "Neon Bible", and you would be right. But the difference is that none of the tracks are overloaded with organs, and surprisingly not baroque instruments either, like you would expect from Rostam Batmanglij. Instead, the preferred sound is that of choirs, in my opinion the perfect choice. Ezra and Rostam must be geniuses, this band has had some of the coolest evolution I've ever gotten to experience with my ears. They know how to evolve.

    I observed that the album Vampire Weekend was rather quiet, and Contra was much more willing to raise its voice. Modern Vampires is a little bit in the middle of the road, as its concept is as well. Some of these tracks are bangers, some are chillers, and some are quiet and put you right on the edge of your seat. All of these varieties work. That really pleases me because the result is a record that, somehow, impossibly, I end up liking BETTER than Contra. Yeah, I can't believe I said it, but it's actually true. This is my favorite Vampire Weekend album to date.

    I give this a 9 out of 10. This band's fourth LP has found itself at the very top of my list of most anticipated upcoming albums. But is probably won't arrive until 2016. Meaning I'll have something missing from my life until then.


    (Yes, I realize only three tracks remain. That's how good this is. Almost every track on here can be considered one of my favorites.)
  33. Sep 27, 2013
    First listen, didnt really care, second listen, awesome! So catchy songs. I find myself whistling or singing along with all songs! Really awesome awesome! Favorites: Unbelievers, Diane Young, Hannah Hunt, Everlasting Arms, Finger Back.
  34. Sep 17, 2013
    The best release in a summer that was packed with quality music and hype. Vampire Weekend gets better with each effort, and the drastic change in musical style while still maintaining an incredibly unique identity and sound and continuing to produce masterfully impresses.
  35. Aug 31, 2014
    Amazing record by Vampire Weekend. I was'nt a big fan of the group before i first heard "Ya Hey" couple of weeks ago. I decided to get whole album and give it a shot - i must say i don't regret. Lyrics, great variety of different instruments, switching tempo and overall haunted LP.
  36. Mar 19, 2014
    An album that changes the way we all look at an already well established band. Soft beats, Tender harmonies and light production value make this album a success in even the toughest markets. An essential album to have and give a listen or 10.
  37. Aug 28, 2014
    After two stylish, modern and flourished albums, Vampire Weekend found the perfect way to sound familiar yet more complex, more mature, more eccentric, while showing and performing catchy and lovely songs that easily stick to both a summer party or a cosy living room with a fire and a sofa. They haven't changed at all; they, actually, have maximized and refined their essence, their talent.
  38. May 2, 2014
    As the songs go one, you will keep thinking in the awesome lyrics and different rhythm that totally changed the look of Vampire Weekend. This revolutionary album is the band's best till now, and I can't wait to see what will come next.

Universal acclaim - based on 51 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 45 out of 51
  2. Negative: 1 out of 51
  1. Oct 4, 2013
    If Modern Vampires of the City makes one thing clear, it's that Vampire Weekend's just getting started here.
  2. 80
    Overall, Modern Vampires of The City sounds fantastic, but not overproduced.
  3. Jun 4, 2013
    While MVOTC doesn’t represent a seismic leap from their earlier material, the general feeling is of a much more considered collection, with greater emphasis on song craft.