Saturday, February 2, 2008

Vampire Weekend: Amoeba record store 2/1

If you listen to black metal Vampire Music like Cradle of Filth, then these four Upper West Side Columbia Grads, Vampire Weekend, are not for you. Further, if you really do listen to black metal, this is probably not the right blog for you. Instead, we suggest: Vampire Hunters Union.
However, if you like indie pop rock and being on the forefront of what's happening, then you'll definately enjoy the music of Vampire Weekend.  
Last night I trudged through the rain and navigated the gauntlet of street kids, neo-hippies and crackheads to arrive at the long-standing San Francisco music store Amoeba on Upper Haight for a gratis show. 
They played a simple and clever set of 7 songs that dipped into their new wave and African sound, blasting out over the CD racks.   The crowd was about 400 eager listeners who had read one or all of the bazillion positive reviews of the self-titled debut album in the blogosphere during the last few months. 
They band quickly showed off their talent, playing poppy, catchy and short songs that are easily and earnestly likable.  Although fun, most will wear thin after a few times through the album.  Don't tell that to the dreadlocked co-ed who wouldn't stop dancing or the 40-year old virgin holding up the phone for his buddy during the final song. 
More than one occasion (4 times) I overhead someone in the store referencing their sound as similar to the Paul Simon album Graceland. Not bad company. 
On a side note, if you own a woven scarf, v-neck cardigan and skinny jeans, then this is your band. If you have even just one of the before mentioned, then you'll probably like them too. If you love that Paul Simon album then you are sure to enjoy Vampire Weekend. 
Newly famous as the "blog band" de jour of 2008, VW will probably rise from the Ivy League to the forefront of music this year.   A combination of internet hype and endless touring (The so called Arctic Monkeys and Clap Your Hands Say Yeah model) VW appears prepped to reap the benefits of the new wave of music marketing.  No longer undercover, (and demonstrating sign #13 that you have "made it") last night they performed crowd favorite ditty A-Punk, on Letterman
Vampire Weekend could end up being just another solid indie rock quartet that lingers for the next decade and spawns uncountable and less enjoyable side projects. Or they'll be the next big thing. One positive indicator for future musical growth is the quirky, preppy New Yorkers signed with XL recordings, home of QLE favorites and boundary pushers Radiohead, Sigur Ros, M.I.A. and Ratatat. 

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