Vampire Weekend on new album: “There’s a lot of dark energy”

Vampire Weekend have revealed that the band’s new album eschews the ‘80s vibe of 2010 hit Contra, describing their forthcoming LP as “lyrically a bit darker [and] a bit spookier.”

Speaking with FL ahead of the Big Day Out tour this January, multi-instrumentalist Rostam Batmanglij remained fairly tight-lipped when asked about Vampire Weekend’s highly anticipated third record, however did confirm the band have honed a darker more classic sound on the new recording: “Musically there’s a lot of organic tones. There’s some old sounds that have been around forever, like the sounds that bands in America started with. [It goes] back to the roots of music being recorded or being played in a room by a band,” he explained. “Lyrically it’s a bit darker, a bit spookier at times … it definitely feels more nocturnal than anything we’ve done before.”

When asked whether the new material will retain the upbeat “preppy” sound that came to define their self-titled debut and it’s follow-up Contra, Batmanglij admitted that the new record was much darker than its predecessors, “I think that it’s definitely darker, which is not to say that it’s without energy, but there’s a lot of dark energy.”

He also explained that the band felt a pressure to maintain the high standard set by their last two releases, and consequently avoided rushing out a record last year – something echoed by his bandmate Ezra Koenig over the weekend. “We definitely have a level of excellence to maintain,” he says. “I mean that’s why we didn’t put out a record a year a go, we could have, and it would have been filled with some great songs and some mediocre ones, and we knew that was not the time. So we scrapped a lot of things, which is something we’ve never done.”

The full interview with Rostam will be published on FL this week.

Vampire Weekend sideshow:

Wednesday, January 23 – Metro Theatre, Sydney (18+)

Big Day Out tour

Friday, January 18 – Showgrounds, Sydney

Sunday, January 20 – Parklands, Gold Coast

Friday, January 25 – Showgrounds, Adelaide

Saturday, January 26 – Flemington Racecourse, Melbourne

Monday, January 28 – Claremont Showground, Perth