THEY’RE. BACK. After six years, Vampire Weekend will release a new album this spring titled Father of the Bride. Two new tracks followed suit — “Harmony Hall” and “2021.” Clad in a simple green snake cover, the tracks are exactly what we’ve been needing from the New York City-based rock band.
It’s no secret that the band has put an exceptional amount of work into their new songs. This latest album will feature 18 tracks that took about 18 months to create. In an interview, lead singer and writer Ezra Koenig describes that “some songs are essays, other songs are haikus,” promising an interesting flow between long and short tracks. The album will revolve around relationships and the stage of the life the band is in now, rather than some of the more youthful vibes from their older works.
Their latest tracks, “Harmony Hall” and “2021” contrast beautifully with one another. “Harmony Hall” is a peppy upbeat tune spanning about five minutes. The song begins with an incredibly catchy guitar riff before Koenig’s distinct voice chimes in. The production takes off from there, due in part to the co-production of ex-member Rostam Batmanglij. Unlike some of their later works, this album is promising more collaboration and inspiration from influences outside of the band. It already features guitarist Dave Longstreth of Dirty Projectors.
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To the fans: I know that 5-6 years is considered a long time between records. Personally, I think it’s a dignified pace befitting a band that’s already placed three albums in stores but everyone has their own sense of time. (I swear the time between 3 & 4 felt shorter to me than 2 & 3. I may be in the minority on this one.) This album didn’t really take any longer to write/record than MVOTC. We just took more time on the front end to chill. I’ll admit I may have stretched out the mixing/mastering process (aka THE END) a little bit cuz spending half the day with my family & half the day at Ariel’s is my ideal life-rhythm & it’s painful to say goodbye to that rhythm. Many of you have been hungry for information and we’ve given you very little. I don’t like talking abt a project while in the middle of making it. I usually regret everything I say cuz it turns out to be wrong (so disregard anything I may have said in the past 5 years.) I thought abt making a recording diary to tide over the people leaving intense comments but…to me, the album IS the recording diary…man. It’s called “FOTB” (well those are the initials – that’s a VW tradition) and it’s 18 songs. Picked the name a few years ago. At some point early on, the album drifted from the Mitsubishi Macchiato aesthetic. It was a helpful guiding principle tho. Working titles are important too. It’s a lot of songs but they all belong there. (If you disagree, you can always say it was 6 songs too long & make a lil 12-song playlist version of it.) At first, I wanted to make two 23-song albums on some human chromosome shit but then 23&me started doing Spotify playlists and I don’t know…felt we’d been scooped. Is it a double album? The vinyl will be double so…yes? It’s about 59 minutes long. We can talk more abt that later – if u care. To me, it’s just FOTB. Anyway, we’re gonna start releasing music next week. After all that waiting, you should have the general schedule: -There will be three 2-song drops every month until the record is out. 1. hh/2021 2. s/bb 3. tl/uw. (plans can change that’s the plan) Thank you for ur patience, Ezra
“2021” is the little sibling to “Harmony Hall.” Clocking in at only a minute and 38 seconds, the laid-back track is a soothing break from the upbeat “Harmony Hall.” The track was inspired by a sample from the Japanese musician Haruomi Hosono and really shaped the vibe of this song. It’s exciting to see the contrast between these two tracks. Both songs scream Vampire Weekend and promise for a complicated, refreshing new album from the indie group that’s finally returned from the shadows.
Featured Image: SONY Music