Clearly third time’s still a charm for indie rock group Vampire Weekend. Their third album, ‘Modern vampires of the City’, debuted at no.1 on the Billboard albums chart, their second album to do so after 2010’s ‘Contra’. And the boys are still quirky and rather avant-garde, something we’ve always expected since they released ‘Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa’, a fusion of punk rock and African music, from their first album.
This new album is co-produced by band member Rostam Batmanglij and producer Ariel Rechtshaid, in order to make the sound as fresh and as far removed from the previous albums as possible. The album is far less African influenced as compared to Contra. Critics are hailing is as a quintessentially indie rock record, and so far two singles have been released from the album, the catchy and upbeat ‘Diane Young’/’Step’ and ‘Ya Hey’. Written entirely by lead singer Ezra Loenig and backing vocalist Rostam Batmanglij, the album explores various themes; disillusionment, faith and mortality. The band says this is a continuation of their previous albums, where the previous themes of privileged youth now transcend into characters with adult responsibilities. The album cover art is a 1966 photograph by Neal Boenzi of the smoggiest day in New York City history, on which the air pollution killed at least 169 people.
The four bandmates, Loenig, Batmanglij,drummer and percussionist Chris Tomson, and bassist and backing vocalist Chris Baio met in Columbia University, and bonded over their love of world music. They begun playing shows in their university, and after graduation self-produced their debut album while simultaneously working full-time jobs: Tomson was a music archivist and Koenig was a middle school English teacher. Internet buzz begun causing a stir around the band, and by 2007, they had already toured with three bands before even releasing their self titled debut, Vampire Weekend.Contra was even more successful, and cemented their indie rock cult status. We await to see if Modern Vampires of the City will match the success. Here’s a clip of the band talking about the album: