KCRW's Morning Becomes Eclectic has a live session with Vampire Weekend (recorded January 11th) which you can listen to or even watch 'on demand' at this link below. I listened to it live and then watched it as spliced together later in the afternoon which was like being a fly on the wall. Since it's for radio and without an audience, though with a string and horn section along, the low key yet intimate performance is a real treat. Vampire Weekend still looks like they're having fun just being together, whether shouting back singalong parts with headphones on or sitting for through an interview. Check it out here.
Vampire Weekend is a band I have endorsed whole-heartedly since they burst on the scene with their namesake release in 2008 -- one of my Top Ten CDs for the year. I rank them similar to The Strokes with all their youthful exuberance and confidence in their sound. That being said, both bands have such a similar sound throughout their playlists that I rarely listen to an entire CD at once. But a few songs at a time make for an extremely enjoyable new music listening experience.
I gave the new release a few listens and since it clocks in at barely 40 minutes that was easy to do. The songs are still crisp, clean and yes, short. The boys in the band have been very busy with a photo spread for the January Vogue (along with MGMT, Golden Silver, Chester French and others) as well as a big article in The New Yorker that follows them around a recent tour in California. The article addresses how their "cheery fusion of British new Wave and West African guitar pop" and "lines that could have been used in an S.A.T.-prep course" rubs some reviewers the wrong way. This millennium generation just doesn't see barriers like those of us who remember when The Talking Heads started using what was coined as "world music" -- myspace.com has created a lush mix of backgrounds that are rarely listed or explained in any way. It's all there for the taking, and so is this new offering of songs from Vampire Weekend.