New Music Report: Vampire Weekend


Rolling Stone's Kevin O'Donnell takes a look at Vampire Weekend's highly anticipated second disc Contra in this week's New Music Report. The New York quartet don't futz with the formula they developed on their 2008 debut too much, which turns out to be a good thing on tracks like "White Sky," which rides some sparkling Afropop guitar riffs and tribal beats. But there are a few tunes where they deviate from their straight-and-narrow: "Giving Up the Gun" is a sweet electro-pop tune, and standout "Cousins" comes on like a prepster's interpretation of punk rock. Singer Ezra Koening still references things like skiing trips to the Alps and the sculptor Richard Serra, and while the disc can get cute at times, there's a lot of interesting instrumentation underscoring the action, like textured synthesizers and thumb-pianos, that ensure Vampire Weekend are no indie-hype flash in the pan.

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