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Vampire Weekend - Self Titled

XL Recordings, Release Date January 29, 2008

by Trent McMartin

Vampire WeekendWhere Paul Simon meets the Arctic Monkeys. Rostam Batmanglij's keyboards newave it up plenty, evoking beach party delights. Chris Baio's bass lines are blantantly Sting-ish in their own unsubtle way, providing a Police-like, or better yet, a Clash "Guns in Brixton" type rhythmic background. And singer Ezra Koenig's lyrics are smart and coherent, though at times border on being pure drivel. But I wouldn't expect any less from a recent Columbia University grad, who targets, of all things, the use of the Oxford comma. There's nothing more punk rock than denouncing a comma that's used immediately before a grammatical conjunction.