I have three things to say...
1. On Vampire Weekend's 1/30/08 Bowery Ballroom Show...
To be honest, I didn't have high expectations for Vampire Weekend's Bowery Ballroom show. I've seen a lot of youtube videos of their live performances, and I wasn't very impressed. So, after last night's show, I'm eating my words. Yes, it is true. Vampire Weekend is good. While most of their music is very mellow and replayable, as Nitsuh Abebe of Pitchfork says, they put on a high-energy show. I had the most fun watching Chris Tomson, the drummer, who enjoys bobbing his head to the beat so much that you can't help but follow suit. Most importantly, Vampire Weekend's music is fun. I don't care what you haters say (and I will get to that later). How can you listen to "Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa" and not want to move to the music? You can't. If you claim that you can, then either you do not enjoy listening to music or you are lying.
Gotta love Ezra's boat shoes + socks combination.
New song, "White Sky." Because every record release show needs a new song that is NOT on the album. From the 1/29 Bowery Ballroom Show.
2. On VW Backlash...
When a band's rise to fame is very fast, it is inevitable that there will be backlash from all sorts of people. But, I think the comments I've been reading on brooklynvegan are out of control. For one, I can't believe people are going out of their way to share their hatred for a band. I don't even bother posting about bands that I find to be unimpressive. Secondly, these attacks on VW are absurd, ranging from criticisms on their look to their musical influences. I'm sure that if Vampire Weekend dressed in typical hipster garb, these people would have less of a problem with them. Because VW chooses to stick with preppy shirts and sweaters, these people are fired up. Also, why do some people get so pissed when a band from humble beginnings hits the big time? Suddenly, they need to explain why VW is completely overrated and unoriginal. I guess in their books, no band is allowed to be remotely influenced by other musical artists. Or have success.
Let's not forget that VW is still a very young and humble band. Around the time doors opened, I saw a fabulously dressed, older woman sitting by herself. I was thinking, "Is that woman in the right place? Is she lost??" Then, I saw Chris Baio (bassist) come up to her and give her a huge hug. I'm thinking she may be his grandmother? Either way, it's endearing that VW's families are coming to their shows. I also talked to Chris Tomson afterwards to congratulate him on a great show and on their successes thus far. He was incredibly gracious and, although he was incredibly busy, he gave me a few minutes of his time. I can't help but be happy for these guys.
This NYTimes piece may make them out to be pretentious Ivy League pricks, but I don't think that is the case. These guys are Columbia alums and the one thing I know about Columbia kids... they are dorky and awkward. As a CU engineer, I definitely know that.
So, Vampire Weekend's name may be all over GQ, Vogue, and MTV (Oh, how I loathe MTV), but my opinion of VW has not changed much since my earlier post. Are they overrated now? Possibly, but I like their music all the same. And, no, I don't think they're like every other indie band. If they were a typical indie band, I wouldn't care for them...I don't think anyone would care for them. Their sound is unique enough for me to be hooked.
3. On Ezra Koenig's Sweater...
Now, for a lighter subject. Last night, that sweater almost started a catfight between a guy and a girl. This guy somehow managed to obtain the sweater and planned on wearing it after throwing it into a washing machine. This girl, claiming to be with management, walks up to him and yanks it out of his hands. Seeing as she went to the back of the coat check line immediately afterwards, I think it's safe to say that she was not with management. The guy was pretty pissed and debated getting the sweater back.
Check out Vampire Weekend's self-titled debut album!
A-Punk - Vampire Weekend
M79 - Vampire Weekend
Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa - Vampire Weekend