Vampire Weekend = Lily Allen (I Mean That as a Compliment)
That was the personal conclusion I reached toward the end of Vampire Weekend's show Wednesday night at the Rock and Roll Hotel. (Here's my "official" review from today's paper.) I like Vampire Weekend in the same way that I like Lily Allen. Let me try to explain.
Both bands were out-of-nowhere Internet sensations that I largely ignored when the hype started up. A couple summers ago I heard Allen's "LDN," thought it was fun, "got" the album and fell in love for a few months. There were four songs on the album that I really loved, the rest was good enough, I enjoyed it for a while, got sick of it and haven't listened to it in a year or so.
I never really listened to Vampire Weekend until I found out I'd be reviewing the show. As I said in my January's Best Albums wrap-up, it's hard for me to understand how this band caused such strong opinions, on either side of the spectrum. It seems that when a band gets so much hype you have to have an opinion that equals the hype, whether it's positive or negative. So Vampire Weekend is either "OMG TEH BEST EVAR!!!!" or they are preppy jerk frauds who simply a byproduct of hype. Those really seem to be the only opinions out there. Check the comments in this Idolator post. (If you want some Vampire Weekend love, just type the band's name into Google Blog Search and you'll find plenty.)
It's all part of the problem with the Internet music scene. You have to know the bands before everybody else, you have to love them more than everybody else or you have to hate them more than anybody else. If you're anywhere in the middle, you're not going to get heard and you won't get many page views and then you'll be as lonely as you were in high school. It's all very ridiculous, of course.
But taking it back to Vampire Weekend, there are four songs on the album that are just absurdly catchy - "Oxford Comma," "Walcott," "Mansard Roof" and "A-Punk" - and the rest is perfectly breezy and enjoyable. I will listen to those songs repeatedly until I get sick of them and then I might not listen to Vampire Weekend for a while. Isn't OK to just enjoy a band for some good songs without having to pick a side in a polarizing battle?
By David Malitz |
February 8, 2008; 6:07 PM ET
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