From Ivy Leaguers to rock stars

Liat Nosrati

Vampire Weekend’s self-titled debut album was released three months ago, but thanks to a lot of attention from the online blogging scene, the album is still going strong.Consisting of Ezra Koenig, Rostam Batmanglij, Chris Tomson and Chris Baio (who is actually actor Scott Baio’s nephew), Vampire Weekend has managed to put together an album that is very inviting to any music listener, young or old.The band formed in their hometown of New York City, back in early 2006, when they all attended Columbia University. Vampire Weekend is named after a movie that Koenig directed as a freshman at Columbia.Most adults complain about new music these days being too obnoxious and having no real melody, but the same can’t be said about Vampire Weekend. Lead singer Koenig’s passionate yet soothing voice combined with instruments ranging from pianos and violins to conga drums, making their sound lovable.Their song “A-Punk” has risen to fame in the popular scene because of its feature in an episode of “Friday Night Lights.” However, that is not the only reason this boy band is famous.Vampire Weekend was on the cover of SPIN Magazine’s March 2008 issue, making them the first band to be on the cover of SPIN before they released their first album. They were also MTV’s band of the week during the week of March 3, 2008. They’re obviously doing something right.These 23- and 24-year-old golden boys may be young, but they make music like they were born to do so. The album opens with the song “Mansard Roof,” which sounds a lot like something you would hear while on vacation in the Caribbean, as the warm serene breeze hugged your shoulders.”M79″ is a sophisticated tune, carefully crafted to sound gentle and refined with a touch of modern rock to it, including usage of the violin.The problem with most new bands is that they find it difficult to stray away from a main melody, and the album ends up sounding like one super-long song. Vampire Weekend is able to sound different on each track, while keeping a hint of that signature sound that ties all the songs together.Their intriguing and romantic sound makes each song easy to fall in love with, and their calming lyrics leave everything out in the open.Vampire Weekend presents a kind, nostalgic feel that can make anyone snap their fingers and even break out into dance. They also make driving on the 405 Freeway at 5 p.m. just a little less annoying.The last track on the album, “The Kids Don’t Stand a Chance,” proves to listeners that these guys are not just a few New Yorkers who decided they would dabble in music just for kicks. That may be why it started, but “The Kids Don’t Stand a Chance” is a song that demands some serious attention.The track is an incredible example of how anyone with a passion and love for music can use instruments and words to portray a truly perfect song.While some music lovers may argue that they’ve been listening to Vampire Weekend since early 2007, way before they reached MTV fame, the point is that they’re a great band that can appeal to anyone.

GRADE: A

 

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