- Summary: Co-produced by Ariel Rechtshaid and band member Rostam Batmanglij, the third full-length release from the indie rock quartet was inspired by New York City.
- Record Label: XL
- Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Alternative Pop/Rock, Indie Rock
- More Details and Credits »
May 21, 2013Each verse/chorus/bridge/intro melody, each lyric straight or knotty, each sound effect playful or perverse (or both)‑-each is pleasurable in itself and aptly situated in the sturdy songs and tracks, so that the whole signifies without a hint of concept.
May 9, 2013The new record by Vampire Weekend is the best alternative pop album you will hear this year. Unselfconscious, technically brilliant in a way that crucially you will never actually notice, shimmering with beautiful, strange melodies and just a small smidge of actual bonkers.
May 14, 2013Haters beware. This is the album that change your entire outlook on Vampire Weekend. Gone are the peppy, Afrobeats and Synths that dominatedHaters 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
Jul 20, 2013This is one of the best albums of the Year!! Lyrically haunting, emotionally deep and superb in every other aspects. Do yourself a favor, andThis 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!… Expand
May 16, 2013Vampire Weekend's latest effort epitomizes everything that a rock album should be in the year 2013: energetic, moving, and feeling fresh,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
Jun 13, 2013For a band that made its name by being the refreshingly unique, Afro-pop-influenced group that birthed the rambunctiously catchy singleFor 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… Expand
Dec 5, 2013Three albums in, Vampire Weekend still haven't lost their edge. While their last album had a concept about a breakup that sends Ezra's brainThree 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.
STANDOUT TRACKS: OBVIOUS BICYCLE, UNBELIEVERS, DIANE YOUNG, HANNAH HUNT, EVERLASTING ARMS, WORSHIP YOU, YA HEY, HUDSON, YOUNG LION
(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.)… Expand
Feb 22, 2014Modern Vampires of the City is Vampire Weekend's darkest album that might lack in that familiar ground that made Vampire Weekend, VampireModern Vampires of the City is Vampire Weekend's darkest album that might lack in that familiar ground that made Vampire Weekend, Vampire Weekend in the first place, but after a few plays and a few more times to adjust to Vamp's more experimental and dark ground, as it turns out, Modern Vampires of the City might just be a clean page for this phenomenal, endlessly surprising and creative band.… Expand
Jun 15, 2013I love the first 2 albums of Vampire Weekend. They are energetic and spontaneously played! Almost every song makes me move and believe me I amI love the first 2 albums of Vampire Weekend. They are energetic and spontaneously played! Almost every song makes me move and believe me I am not a dancer. I was looking forward for their 3rd album, the critics were positive... To be honest: it was a great disappointment the first time. I tried a 2nd time; let it rest for 2 weeks and tried a 3rd time. No improvement in my experience. Probably the album has been over produced/thought and the music does not embrace me as the first 2 albums.
I will continue listening the first 2 albums and try to forget this bad experience. It was such a disappointment that I created a account on this fantastic site to share the thoughts of Vampire Weekend lover with you.… Collapse
Published: December 4, 2013Throughout the coming weeks, we'll be collecting year-end top 10 album lists from dozens of music critics, publications, record stores, and other sources. Find individual lists and this year's cumulative rankings inside.
Published: May 9, 2013The coming months will see new albums from Daft Punk, Vampire Weekend, Boards of Canada, The National, Queens of the Stone Age, and (maybe) Kanye West. Get all the details on these and other major summer releases, and listen to tracks from each one.
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