Vampire Weekend are the latest New York band being tipped as "the ones to watch" by those in the know. Here, they've delivered an album full of bouncy, somewhat quirky pop songs with bags of melody and 'smarter-than-you' lyrics and New England references that makes the bands 'preppyness' pretty obvious.
Because of their well-to-do social background, The Strokes have become an easy comparison to make for music journos, but Vampire Weekends sound is less retro, less guitary and less spikey. The emphasis here is on light, melodic pop tunes with a bit of Afro-beat thrown in (hence the other easy comparison, Paul Simon). It's a record that doesn't sound like much else out there, and the band seems to be having a good time themselves, which transmits to the listener.
Aside from the excellently odd single "Mansard Roof" which has been doing the rounds for a few months now, the highlights for me are new single "A-Punk", possibly the most energetic track on the album, "Campus", a straightforward happy-go-lucky ditty and the Graceland-esque "Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa", which is quite possibly the most melodious, bounciest track I've heard in years (and it also name-checks Peter Gabriel for good measure).
This is an album for sunny weather. I doubt it will become the first CD you reach for during those introspective, thoughtful moments, however, put this on before a night out and it's guaranteed to put a smile on your face.