Vampire Weekend – Horchata

Sorry for the lack of updates on the site in the past few days; I think I might have to treat myself to weekends off now I’m back at uni – too much reading and work to do that doesn’t involve scouring my inbox for new tracks or keeping abreast of the latest news in the pop world.

Anyway, I think it was a couple of weeks back that I commented on the upcoming release of Contra, Vampire Weekend’s sophomore effort. Back then I had to make do with a lossy live recording of an appearance on Jimmy Fallon or something or other. Now we have an actual studio track kindly given to us by the band themselves on that rather picturesque teaser site.

Horchata is a slightly strange and awkward affair, but in a good way, I think. It’s the only way you can really describe a song that opens with a couplet like ‘In December drinking Horchata/ I look psychotic in a balaclava’ yet retains the simplistic pop vibes of the original album without sounding all together the same.

The afropop influences are a little watered down, instead of tight, funky guitar lines we get soaring vocals, tinkling glockenspiel, the lush, stately orchestration of M79, and stuttering drums; it’s pretty much the aural equivalent of (what I presume is) that Pacific skyline. The slightly clunky opening lines might not have the same singalongability of tracks like Oxford Comma or One (Blake’s Got a New Face) but it’s a promising opening and shows the band retaining elements of their trademark sound but not being afraid to push it forward a little.

MP3: Vampire – Horchata


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