Music

Vampire Weekend (a track by track review)

vampire190 - Vampire Weekend (a track by track review)

I have been giving a sort of “love fest” to Vampire Weekend for some months now and today I finally got my mitts on their “self titled” debut full length. But what better way to do justice to the record than to break it down track by track.

  1. Mansard Roof – (A casual start to the record that transports you immediately to the center of what Vampire Weekend’s sound is. A nice shuffle that is neither amazing nor bland. A very solid lead in to the next track.) Score: 8/10
  2. Oxford Comma – ( This song has been on repeat for me since having the version off of their cdr. The verse is very catchy with how Ezra Koenig handles his vocal phrasing. A great song hitting home with his disdain for a “loving show of money” in the line “why would you lie about how much coal you have? why would you lie about something dumb like that”) Score: 8.5/10
  3. A-Punk – ( One of my favorite tracks on the cd. It is a short and sweet (clocking in at 2 min 17 sec.) pop gem with a catchy chorus “Look outside at the raincoats coming, say oh”. What makes this track great is the fact that it feels like the perfect length. Any longer would have been just excess blah. ) Score: 10/10
  4. Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa – ( If this song doesn’t hook you on this band, than there is no hope. It was the first song that I really found the “Paul Simon” influence to ring true. This is the best of “Graceland” with a catchy chorus that will have you singing and tapping your way through the day) Score: 10/10
  5. M-79 – (My first exposure to this song was a very bare bones version from when they played on Daytrotter, so when I heard the album version I was taken back. They have added orchestration to the pre-verses and verses which changed the feel from rock to more of a laid back jaunt and I am pleased with the additions. It feels like more of a complete product and a fairly solid song and almost feels more “fun”.) Score: 8/10
  6. Campus – (Another song that I had only heard a “live” version of, and let me tell you that for such basic pop song it reeled me in. Once again do to Ezra’s vocal delivery. The lyrics are his most basic on the album, but he delivers them so well that it creates a pop perfection. The bass line gives the song a nice groove making for a nice head bob) Score: 9/10
  7. Bryn – (This song doesn’t hit me as much more than a basic b-side type filler. Not a terrible song by any shakes, but paired with the rest of the album it feels a little flat. A catchy intro hook and nice orchestrations fill in the song nicely but nothing to get to pumped up about) Score: 6/10
  8. One (Blake’s Got A New Face) -(the most danceable track on the album hands down. Such a fun basic track, I can just imagine grooving to this song at a show. Songs like this one are what appeals to me the most, capturing the best parts of rock and afro-beat and melding them into a nice groove.) Score: 9/10
  9. I Stand Corrected – (Another solid track built with a strong back bone of bass and drums, with the floor toms just thumping away. The song builds and builds to the bridge which I wish paid off a little bit more but it still is a good song.) Score: 8/10
  10. Walcott – (By far the weakest track on the album that lumps itself into mundane because it never really pulls you in. It only really exists on the surface leaving very little for you to really grab a hold of. It is the furthest from the Afro-beat that you hear throughout the album and suffers from this. Not terrible, just not terribly exciting.) Score: 5/10
  11. The Kid’s Don’t Stand A Chance – (I have to say that when I listen to this song I have a hard time not thinking about “The Police” or even early “Elvis Costello”. It’s a very laid back groove in the vein of “Walking on The Moon” by “The Police”. But all of these references are a credit to the songs strength of being a great groove.) Score: 9/10

Overall Score: 8.3/10

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  • BTW I didn’t realize it at the time, but I saw (well actually heard) these guys at a pizza place in Rock Island, Illinois a few months back when I had no idea who they were. I think I mentioned them in a previous blog post, but they were pretty good. I’m still checking out the album. Sounds like some decent stuff.

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