Fresh new music always seems to make for a great entertainment review. We all love musicâ€”it’s a lot of what makes us who we are as individuals. Lately, the new experimental styles seem to strike my fancy.
I heard about Vampire Weekend’s debut self-titled album shortly after its Jan. 29th release, a little more than a week ago. Their highly classical pop-rock sound is likely to catch your attention. The band’s members describe their sound as having African pop and Western Classical influences.
Ezra Koenig, Rostam Batmanglij, Chris Tomson and Chris Baioâ€”the group’s four membersâ€”all met while in college at Columbia University. That’s where all the magic began.
This New York City indie rock band is now signed with XL Recordings. Like many other indie rock groups, the band started with a blog that simply continued to grow in popularity.
The group acquired the band name from a film called Vampire Weekend that Ezra Koenig was making the summer after his freshman year at Columbia.
Last year, with only an EP released, they made Rolling Stone’s 100 Best Songs of 2007 with the song “Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa.“ “Kwassa Kwassa“ is the name of a particular dance rhythm in the Democratic Republic of the Congo; it isn’t difficult to figure out why they chose this title when listening to the song.
The African and classical influences are quite evident throughout the album. Vampire Weekend combines the two musical genres in a unique way that still enables a fresh, dance-y, can’t-get-enough-of-it sound.
In “Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa,“ the guitar rifts mimic a typical classical verse; the drums rely heavily on the Congo beats, while the vocals are influenced by what sounds to be tribal song and chanting.
Not only is their style a combination of “Afro-pop“ and classical, but they are also greatly influenced by traditional ’80s rock in that the chorus of their songs is where most of the musical emphasis is placed. Vampire Weekend has created consistently high-energy, exciting choruses.
Unlike most experimental groups, Vampire Weekend also encompasses stringed instruments into their music to enhance their signature style.
They remind me of The Unicorns with their vocals, island feel and catchy rhythms.
For those who have never heard of The Unicorns, you may be surprised to hear (or read) that I think you will also enjoy this album. Vampire Weekend strikes me as a band that the indie rock kids as well as those who are into the more poppy mainstream music can all agreeably enjoy together.
I highly recommend tracks such as “M79,“ “One (Black’s Got A New Face)“ and “Walcott.“ All three tracks have quite different styles, so at least one of the three is sure to be enjoyed by all.
The band’s modern classical vibe is incredibly pleasing to listen to. The upbeat sound and use of classical strings very quickly heighten my good mood. I can certainly see Vampire Weekend’s newly released album climbing to the top of chart after chart.
They are fun and easy on the ears, and they write the kinds of songs that will get stuck in your head for days. Only this time, instead of the song being a really catchy song that you hate, it will be a fantastic new song that you won’t get tired of singing all week.
I highly recommend this album to anyone who enjoys music. After all, with a name like Vampire Weekend, how could you not be tempted to bite into their music?