The return of Vampire Weekend

Vampire Weekend

2013 just continues to be an amazing year for music. And amongst the list of acts who are putting out new albums this year are Vampire Weekend.

Their self-titled debut in 2008 was a delight, and Contra, the follow-up in 2010 wasn’t bad either (opening track ‘Horchata’ aside). Now they are about to unleash their third album Modern Vampires Of The City.

It’s due out at the beginning of May and there’s a double A-side ‘Diane Young’/’Step’ now available:

Bring it on…

Album Review – Vampire Weekend


Vampire Weekend -‘Contra’ (XL Recordings)

Vampire Weekend’s 2008 self-titled debut was one of the main releases of that year. Loved by bloggers, critics and public alike, what started as a release that bloggers were writing about was crossing over by the end of the year. Not only in terms of daytime radio play, but the fact that their forthcoming UK tour was sold out by Christmas. That’s good going for pretty much any band, even more so in times of a recession.

So how does the traditionally ‘difficult second album’ fare? It’s fair to say that their sophomore release is not as immediate as their debut. Certainly, for the first three or four listens I was undecided on it. But several days later, I’m hugely, hugely enjoying this album. It’s not widely different from the first album, but there’s still the African influences that made their debut special, the catchy songs and a willingness to be intelligent rather than feeling that they have to hide any books they might have read recently.

At thirty six minutes in length, it’s not a long album – but it comfortably makes the best use of the time and the eleven songs here are strong enough that it doesn’t feel that there’s much filler. Granted, if you didn’t like the first album this is unlikely to change your view on the band. Opening track ‘Horchata’ is very silly indeed. But as far as this listener is concerned, highlights like ‘Run’ and ‘Diplomat’s Son’ and the delightfully frenetic ‘Cousins’ show that Vampire weekend have come up trumps again.


Stream the album here

2008 -The best so far?

Another, oh five months or so, and everyone’ll be making their lists of the best of the year.

As 17 Seconds progresses, I have heard about seventy new albums this year alreadt, as well as masses of tracks, and face the task of trying to put it all in order for the end of the year. It does feel like it’s been a good decade for music so far, in fact; BTW did the nineties ever go through a phase of being out or was it accepted that it had been pretty good overall? There have been one or two rubbish albums -I never want to hear the Black Mountain album again, frankly, but there has been some great stuff.

Anyway, this is a Top 10 tracks of the year so far for me:

1. Wedding Present – ‘The Trouble With Men.’ mp3
2. MGMT – ‘Time To Pretend.’ mp3
3. Santogold – ‘My Superman.’ mp3
4. Jamie Lidell -‘Another Day.’ mp3
5. Kills -‘Cheap and Cheerful.’ mp3
6. Dom DeLuca -‘Birds Of Worry.’ mp3
7. Hayman Watkins Trout and Lee -‘Sly and the Family Stone.’ mp3
8. Vampire Weekend -‘The Kids Don’t Stand A Chance.’ mp3
9. Neon Neon -‘I Lust U.’ mp3
10.Rustie -‘Mic Of The Year.’ mp3

See what you make of it, comments welcome, but do not assume that it will be the same come December. Oh, and anyone who thinks that there is only ever white middle class indie boys with guitars on this blog is not paying attention!

Hope things are drier wherever you are than they are down here…

Album Review: Vampire Weekend

{I know, it’s been all over the blogs recently. But sometimes it’s interesting to investigate what all the hype’s about].

Album Review:

Vampire Weekend-‘Vampire Weekend.’ (XL Recordings)

By the time you read this, most of you who are regular blog readers will wonder why on earth I’m adding my twopence worth, to a record that has already been fawned over, raved about and sneered at in the matter of weeks since it’s been out. Heck, I was even ready to hate them. According to their website: ‘The name of this band is Vampire Weekend. We are specialists in the following styles: “Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa”, “Upper West Side Soweto”, “Campus”, and “Oxford Comma Riddim.” ‘ Oh good grief. So, an internet sensation band, who might be the next Arcade Fire or not, and who have the capacity to be as bloody annoying as Canada’s Bare Naked Ladies.

Well, as I’m learning every day, you can’t always go by what your senses tell you (empiricism will only take you so far with rock music). Yes, they graduated from Columbia University, yes there is a certain amount of cleverness…yet damn it, it feels so good. They may write songs about grammar (‘oxford comma’) or Architecture (‘Mansard Roof’), but damn it, thye’re good, no, great songs. So they may sing about life on US College campuses, but at least they’re singing about what they know. And the music is just…great. Nice little pop songs, with orchestration that knows South African township jive and baroque as well.

Well, yeah there’s a lot of press and coverage about them. Yes, some people will genuinely hate them. But I tried, and I’ve ended up starting to love this band. You might just do too…


Vampire Weekend is out now on XL Recordings, but you probably knew that already.

My two favourite songs from this record:

Vampire Weekend -‘The kids Don’t Stand A Chance.’ mp3

Vampire Weekend -‘M79.’ mp3

Vampire Weekend’s website is here

Vampire Weekend’s MySpace is here