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Contra Image
Metascore
81

Universal acclaim - based on 39 Critic Reviews What's this?

User Score
6.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 594 Ratings

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  • Summary: The second album for the rock band was produced by band member, Rostam Batmanglij.

Top Track

California English
Wouldn't ever gag you with a spoon, my only true love Never really heard you speak that way, it's unworthy of... Funny how that little college girl... See the rest of the song lyrics
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 34 out of 39
  2. Negative: 0 out of 39
  1. Contra establishes that his band has chosen another path, celebrating the world's contradictions, contraindications, and contradistinctions with a new pop sound made up of old pop sounds that aren't the same old pop sounds.
  2. Contra is still a Vampire Weekend album and it's certainly one that past fans will presently like. It may be less vigorous, but only if you're searching the surface.
  3. Vampire Weekend's second album, Contra, finds the New York-based band pushing its eclectic, intellectual indie rock further using a mash-up of musical genres, clever wordplay and emotional heft.
  4. Mojo
    80
    Contra is the sound of a band driving themselves to very satisfying extremes. [Feb 2010, p. 96]
  5. New York prepsters stick to their Paul Simon-goes-indie formula on successful second album.
  6. Contra may not propose much of a rebuttal to those who thumbed their nose up at the band's past work, but it's not difficult to see how it could strengthen their core audience while netting them some new fans at the same time.
  7. Contra isn't really that bad, yet it's also not nearly sturdy enough to maintain the puppy-love, Obama-esque crush many of us have had on them.

See all 39 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 83 out of 104
  2. Negative: 7 out of 104
  1. RobertC
    Jan 12, 2010
    10
    Beautiful, clever, and catch. This album has a certain heartfelt feeling that is missing from their first record, which makes up for the fact Beautiful, clever, and catch. This album has a certain heartfelt feeling that is missing from their first record, which makes up for the fact that Contra is less happy go lucky than their debut. Songs like "Giving Up the Gun," "Diplomats Son," and "White Sky" stand out. With their sophmore album they prove that they are still smarter than their indie peers, but they also show that they are more more endearing. Expand
  2. Oct 6, 2010
    10
    One of the few albums I can listen to without changing track. It's far better than their first LP. "near-perfection"? What kinda music are youOne of the few albums I can listen to without changing track. It's far better than their first LP. "near-perfection"? What kinda music are you listening to?, coz it must be terrible. Expand
  3. ThorK
    Jan 12, 2010
    10
    Hmmmm... I'm kind of confused as to why this has such a low user rating. I find this to be an absolutely excellent album, better than Hmmmm... I'm kind of confused as to why this has such a low user rating. I find this to be an absolutely excellent album, better than their first if pretty much every aspect. Some standout tracks would be "Horchata," "White Sky," "California English," "Run," and "Diplomat's Son." I loved their first LP and am enjoying this one even more. Expand
  4. ChrisWojo
    Jan 13, 2010
    9
    This is a great follow-up for Vampire weekends first CD. Their originality comes through on each song and they are as clever as they have This is a great follow-up for Vampire weekends first CD. Their originality comes through on each song and they are as clever as they have ever been. But, we need more songs next time guys! Expand
  5. Nov 5, 2010
    8
    It isn't as consistently good as their first album, but this is still worth buying, it has a couple standout songs. I like that they didn'tIt isn't as consistently good as their first album, but this is still worth buying, it has a couple standout songs. I like that they didn't completely abandon what brought them initial success. Expand
  6. Feb 9, 2021
    7
    Contra by Vampire Weekend: 6.81

    Horchata: 1 :) White Sky: 1 :) Holiday: 1 :) California English: 0.5 Taxi Cab: 0.75 Run: 1 Cousins:
    Contra by Vampire Weekend: 6.81

    Horchata: 1 :)
    White Sky: 1 :)
    Holiday: 1 :)
    California English: 0.5
    Taxi Cab: 0.75
    Run: 1
    Cousins: 0.5
    Giving Up the Gun: 1 :)
    Diplomat’s Son: 0.5
    I Think Ur A Contra: 1

    8.25/10 = .825 -> 6.81

    A friend recommended the first Vampire Weekend album to me, and while I was hesitant at first to listen to it (as it seemed to be a different type of music), I ended up loving it, and was very eager to listen to more Vampire Weekend material. Contra is the band’s sophomore album, and while it is not as good as the original release, it is still a well done album that I enjoyed. As I was listening to it, I noticed that the band felt more comfortable using some elements of techno music, such as synths. Some of the faster tracks also felt a little rushed. While I greatly appreciate upbeat music, I felt like some of the songs that were like this were almost too upbeat. The music in these tracks were impressive (as playing that fast is not easy) but they were not the most fun to listen to. While as a whole the album was a little rocky, Contra starts off very well, with three winners right away. I wish I could give my entire song-by-song commentary, but the 5,000 character limit tells me I cannot. As a whole, I liked Contra, but it was definitely an uneven outing. For next time, I hope they keep most of their tracks at a reasonably fast tempo but not to overdo it. The lyrics were on par with the previous album, and the better songs on Contra are comparable to the tracks I enjoyed the most on their namesake. I look forward to listening to the next Vampire Weekend album. Despite the few flaws that Contra exhibited, they are still a talented band that produces wonderful music. I would recommend Contra to fans of the original, but I would also tell them to not go in thinking it is a jaw-dropping sequel to the first. Creating a decent sophomore album can be tricky, but Vampire Weekend managed to do that. Highlights: Horchata, White Sky, Holiday, Run, Giving Up the Gun, and I Think Ur a Contra.
    Expand
  7. Mr.T
    Jan 18, 2010
    0
    I don't actually think it deserves a 0, but it certainly doesn't deserve a 6. Overrated hipster dribble.

See all 104 User Reviews

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