Edge

Bite into a new hit album

Vampire Weekend band members Rostam Batmanglij, Chris Baio, Christopher Tamson and Ezra Koenig.

The sophomore slump is something that hits everyone from singers and musicians to college students. It’s usually unavoidable and accepted as a fact of life and art: a band’s second album probably won’t be as good as its first. Vampire Weekend, however, avoids that fate with “Contra,” its upbeat second album.

On this album, Vampire Weekend’s sound mirrors the background of the band whose members met as students at Columbia University. It’s a little yuppie and a little preppy, a fascinating mixture of pop, reggae and ska.

Vampire Weekend is a band with a passionate fan base but also vocal detractors. The very things that incited such ire, like their attempts at lyrical eccentricity, are back in full form on “Contra” whose first song, “Horchata,” rhymes “balaclava” with “Masada.” “Giving Up the Gun” is Contra’s most accessible song, and “Cousins” and “Diplomat’s Son” evoke Arctic Monkeys and M.I.A., respectively. On first listen, there aren’t any standout songs like their self-titled debut’s “Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa” or “A-Punk,” but “Contra” is also more even overall.

“Contra” is for the fan who wants to be a music snob but lacks the sophistication to do so. It is accessible to the masses, yet not as “out there” as the albums by some of Vampire Weekend’s counterparts in indie rock.

Sarah B. Pilchick may be contacted at sbpilchick@themiamihurricane.com.

##################

RATING BOX:

Rating: 3/4 stars

Release Date: Jan. 12

Producer: Rostam Batmanglij

Label: XL Recordings

January 20, 2010

Reporters

Sarah B. Pilchick

Senior EDGE Writer


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

It’s the play Miami Hurricanes fans will never forget — and Florida State fans are trying to forget. ...

Miami Hurricanes fans might recall their favorite college football players in past years dreaming of ...

The new quarterback is usually the ones fans gush over. For the University of Miami, last season it ...

Debate all you want, but University of Miami football coach Mark Richt made it clearer than ever Wed ...

Last year, when University of Miami tailback Mark Walton attended the Atlantic Coast Conference Foot ...

UM dining services team earns national recognition for special event catering. ...

From hammerheads to great whites, University of Miami researcher Neil Hammerschlag is a dedicated sp ...

An ACLU report authored by UM sociologists documents racial and ethnic disparities in Miami-Dade Cou ...

Following the summit between Trump and Putin, reaction from politicians, pundits and former intellig ...

A School of Communication associate professor played an important hand—an artistic one!—in World Cup ...

Miami senior Tyler Gauthier was named to the 2018 Fall Watch List for the Rimington Trophy presented ...

Miami junior wide receiver Ahmmon Richards was among those named to the watch list for the 2018 Bile ...

University of Miami junior running back Travis Homer was named a preseason candidate for the Doak Wa ...

Six former Canes competed on NBA Summer League teams, with three averaging at least 10 points per ga ...

Quick Hits gives University of Miami volleyball fans an opportunity to get to know the new student-a ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.