Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Vampire Tuesday

I had the pleasure of catching Vampire Weekend's inaugural London show last night and it was a doozy. I'd only heard a small number of succinct tracks (despite foraging the interweb for weeks) and somewhat expected to witness a maximum 20-minute set comprised almost solely of the handful of singles released over the past few months. As it turned out, my expectations were blown away and I got much more than my money's worth.

First off: yes, they're good. The New York City natives kicked things off with newest single 'Mansard Roof' and treated us to some dozen songs including much-hyped tracks 'Oxford Comma', 'Mansard Roof', 'Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa' and 'A-Punk'. These familiar tracks seemed to be filled with even more depth and resonated well with the curious crowd. Heck, some people even knew the words. Newer (read: unreleased) material was equally well received. VW dropped several songs from the new album, which they confirmed is complete and due for release in early '08. All were awesome; some are still stuck in my head. 'The Kids Don't Stand a Chance' is especially excellent. Lead vocalist and guitarist-extraordinaire Ezra Koenig was charismatic, energetic, and wore an awesome shirt and sweet loafers. At one point he had pretty much the whole crowd shouting "Blake's got a new face" in jubilation. Don't ask.
The set wrapped up with an intense heavy-metal version of 'Walcott' and looking around the packed venue after this blistering finale, it was pretty clear that everyone had enjoyed Vampire Weekend's first London appearance, band members included.

After winning over the entire crowd at the Borderline, the guys brought out a bunch of copies of their new Mansard Roof 7", released on Monday. The fact that these sold out in about the time it took to open the box and collect the money (I was fortunate enough to get the last one) attests to the calibre of the band's live show. The single's B-side 'Ladies of Cambridge' turned out to be an upbeat, quirky, instantly likable little ditty (surprise, surprise). Just 'cause you weren't there and couldn't grab one for yourself doesn't mean you shouldn't be able to enjoy this track:

Vampire Weekend - Ladies of Cambridge

Some other newbies that you're sure to like:

Vampire Weekend - The Kids Don't Stand a Chance
Vampire Weekend - M79
Vampire Weekend - Bryn

- a.m.p.m.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for those! I caught them last night in Manchester UK, supporting The Shins. They were so good. So tight and so many good songs. I knew nothing of them before, they sounded like they from Liverpool, they had a scouse sound, I was surprised to hear they were from NY!

Thankyou again

mat said...

I saw them supporting The Shins last night as well. Actually heard Mansard Roof on Radio 1 earlier in the day, and was really impressed, but had no idea I'd see them that night.

I agree about their Scouse sound, and I love the African influences, makes for a really different indie rock sound.

Cheers for posting up the mp3s!