Vampire Weekend - Modern Vampires Of The City

Between Roseland, Steve Buscemi, two char-burned Saabs, and some excellent singles, Vampire Weekend have laid their promotional campaign groundwork memorably. The only thing left is for you to hear the Ariel Rechtshaid & Rostam Batmanglij-produced, third Vampire Weekend LP Modern Vampires Of The City in its entirety — and for us to have a party about it — and that is what this morning’s all about. Click this iTunes link, press play, weigh in. Very Modern.

MVOTC is officially available in one week, on 5/14, via XL. The band’s on SNL this Saturday, also.

Comments (79)
  1. Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see

  2. i can’t figure this out. still only showing “diane young” as available, what gives?

  3. After I was a bit let down by Contra this feels like a real return to form. I second the Unbelievers love and would also submit Worship You as a favorite track

  4. What’s the link that works, can’t figure this out. I pre-ordered the White Vinyl but I need this in my life right meow.

  5. Hudson literally gives me chills. It’s so beautiful and spooky.

  6. Just finished listening.
    *Smiles for five minutes straight, then goes into a corner and cries profusely*

  7. this is actually such an amazing album! god damn..

  8. Par for the course. Good but I was expecting more.

  9. I’m three songs in and this is already my favorite album of the year

  10. I still haven’t fully formed an opinion of how good it is as a capital-A Album, but I can say it captures their light-hearted-yet-substantial idiosyncrasies really well. Putting it on, all of the memories of listening to Contra in the car and being blown away came flooding back.

    Pysched to spend more time with it.

  11. are VW the best pop band of the present moment? serious question. i certainly wouldn’t argue that they’re the best pop *act* — but what other current band has the same mastery of concision, the same facility with sonic detail, and the same ability to write tunes that are so outrageously catchy??

  12. There’s never anything wrong with Vampire Weekend. They succeed at giving us immensely accessible pop candy. There’s nothing new goin on here, or much different that what anyone should expect. It’s Vampire Weekend. We’ll enjoy it and not judge it because their next album will be just as much fun, take ya through another memorable summer then drift into what will be considered, at the end of their careers, as a magnificent collection of albums.

  13. This will be my AOTY, for sure.

  14. I’m really loving Hudson. It sounds like absolutely nothing else they’ve done.

    • The last third of the album is unique with them, I think…there’s a ominous vibe mixed into their normally cheery approach. It’s a nice little blend for them. Sorta like epic pop!

  15. Step is easily going to be my favorite song of the year. When the lyric video was released I listened to it over and over and over.

  16. I really think that Vampire Weekend are just too smart to release anything less than fantastic, and the more eccentric they get, the better. The first album will always be a personal favorite of mine, but this is definitely their most impressive collection of songs to date.

  17. I went in with high expectations for this album, but after listening to it I’m blown away.
    Would need a few more listens to tell for sure bit it really feels like VW have upped their already brilliant game.

  18. I was expecting more vocal pitch modulation from the rest of the album!

    Fantastic. Can’t wait to listen in my car!! The quality of this stream already sounds better than the YouTube audio!

  19. Hudson drums reminded me of My Pal Foot Foot for a second…and it was an awesome second!

  20. My car will be exclusively playing Modern Vampires of the City this summer.

  21. Brilliant. Their best yet.

  22. Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see

  23. You guys, we also get new records from Daft Punk and The National in the next two weeks. Thank you, 2013.

  24. verry good songs !!!!!

  25. Why didn’t this party start last night?

  26. Finger back totes sounds like early Animal Collective. Also, great album.

  27. I wonder what Steve Buscemi thinks

  28. ‘Everlasting Arms’ is incredible. Still a major Graceland influence but a more modern take on it. Impressive, impressive album.

  29. Wonderful album. “Step,” “Unbelievers,” “Diane Young,” and “Ya Hey” are instant classics, and there’s not a weak moment throughout its 43 minutes.

  30. pretty solid return. The only song I found annoying was Ya Hey.

  31. I enjoyed Vampire Weekend’s first two albums…but this one is really something. An AOTY candidate for certain, this is going to be difficult for anyone to top.

  32. Boy, do we have a serious three-peat on our hands. I’m always amazed at Ezra’s ability to go back to the well time after time and deliver an incredibly unique vocal performances on each track. This record sounds like the S/T aged in an oak cask for 5 years. Derivative of course, but far more rich and refined.

  33. Anyone else struggling to warm to ‘Unbelievers’? The live renditions threw me off immediately and the studio version hasn’t managed to convert me yet. ‘Finger Back’ is an early favourite, not crazy on the spoken word interlude though, and ‘Obvious Bicycle’ is unspeakably gorgeous.

  34. Rap game Hannah Hunt

  35. “Worship You” – such a standout. Very well done!

  36. The end of Hannah Hunt is so awesome. Ya Hey is one of the most intelligent songs i’ve heard in a long time. And Diane Young is a perfect summer radio song. Just so solid straight through. Unique vocals on every track.

  37. Um, yes, this is amazing. And now I feel even dumber for being one of those people who whined “but this isn’t [insert sacred cow here]” back in 2008.

  38. First impressions of the City: There is no doubt in my mind that the lyrics and vocal performances throughout the album are Ezra’s collective best. He absolutely hits the ball out of the park. Sadly, I don’t feel the same way about all of the music. Before you (those of you that have fallen completely in love with the album) shun my opinion, I think that the first seven songs on the album are more or less a perfect sequence of songs in terms of being diverse and containing signature elements of VW’s “sound.” To my ears, the songs almost seem to be sequenced in pairs with “Young Lion” operating in a very clever way as a cyclical piece between “Hudson” and “Obvious Bicycle.” However, the flow of the album is derailed for me after “Everlasting Arms.”

    “Worship You” is my least favorite song on the album, and it might be my least favorite song in VW’s discography (maybe a tie with “Giving Up the Gun”). My dislike for the song doesn’t necessarily stem from the lyrics and I appreciate the risk and performances throughout it but to my ears, the song is a structural mess. In defense of the song, its inclusion seems to be pretty important to the record with the lyrical parallels between “Unbelievers” and its pairing with “Ya Hey” (nothing new to add to its criticism; I like it and could do without the high pitched vocals but could see human sounding chants being tossed out during the making of for not working). I do kind of wish that Steve Buscemi directed a video of his reaction to hearing Ezra’s rapid-fire delivery on “Worship You,” that would be gold.

    Arguably, “Finger Back” isn’t a weak song by any means, but (and this isn’t VW’s fault) I hear a bizzarre combination of Avey Tare in the verses (I think that is what the commenter above meant when he or she heard Animal Collective), Dirty Projectors’ “About to Die” (IMO VW wouldn’t sound the way they do without their earlier influence) and GIVERS’ “Up Up Up” (IMO they wouldn’t sound the way they do without VW). So, the song sounds strangely derivative to me which is a problem that I don’t really have with any of the other songs.

    The ending of the album is great, though. “Hudson” sounds to me like what I would expect a song from a band called Vampire Weekend to sound like and has to be the darkest song in their discography; it is a pretty good penultimate song with respect to the rest of the record. I didn’t know the track times in advance so when I expected VW to pull a “Don’t Get Lost in Heaven”/”Demon Days” maneuver afterwards with “Young Lion,” I was pleasantly surprised with its brevity.

    I was a bit on the fence with some of the musical arrangements bordering on overwrought after my first listen but by my third time through, I believe that VW has struck a good balance between band mode and orchestra mode. I will say that although I appreciate Appalachian Spring Suite as much as the next person, its allusion (?) in “Unbelievers” climax is an example of too much for me.

    TLDR: I believe that the album is pretty close to perfect in terms of coherence and vision but I could do without two songs. Although, I’m not completely sold on all of the musical arrangements (the album sounds like Vampire Weekend on Broadway at points), the band does a brilliant job of keeping the songs diverse, thrilling, beautiful, and intelligent by adding new features to their “sound” (I see you female choir) without completely alienating fans of their previous records. Well done, VW!

  39. …My apologies, I wasn’t expecting my comment to become “Ass-Kicked’s Premature Evaluation.” I’ll work on my concision while I’m listenin’ to Modern Vampires of the City. Also, f*** comma’s!

  40. love this shit.

  41. Hannah Hunt (especially the last minute and chorus) is probably the best songwriting they’ve ever done. Rostam’s production is off the charts again. We got a taste with “Diane Young” but what these guys are doing in the studio is really magical. Most of it unfortunately doesn’t translate to live performances well, but the recording aspect reminds me of Revolver-Beatles Era creativity. “Everlasting Arms” is pretty much pop perfection. I can’t provide much criticism, besides maybe I’m not exactly into the “Finger Back” and “Worship You” combo, and the chipmunk vocals on “Ya Hey”. But, the album is still pretty great front to back. These guys are a well tuned pop music machine right now.

  42. Sorry, guys, I am gone but had to come back to say something stupid: rubber soul vibes all over this.


    k, i’m done.

    for now….

  43. Been waiting weeks to use a Ron Swanson GIF. Now seems appropriate:

  44. even though this record is jarringly diverse, almost uncomfortably so, i’ve got to give them credit for sounding fresh. it seems like only yesterday people were ridiculing them for their sound, and now it seems like the haters using paul simon comparisons can finally shut the fuck up. first contra, now this – it really vindicates the effort i put into defending these guys over the past five years.

    but does anyone else think, after the third or fourth listen, that “unbelievers” is getting truly annoying? not sure at this point if they’re gonna get much mileage out of that one.

  45. Though we live on the US dollar, you and me we got our own sense of time.

    Motto o the summer, 2013

  46. The last minute of “Unbelievers” is magic.

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