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Yes, Vampire Weekend still bugs me -- and a few notes on Pitchfork TV

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"Cape Cod Kwasa Kwasa" and all the rest of it is still making me want to toss my cookies, for all the reasons laid forth here, but now multiplied by 10, since I caught the band playing on "Saturday Night Live" this weekend while channel-surfing, and because I just watched its appearance on Pitchfork TV, playing a stripped-down semi-plugged show in a mansion somewhere near Columbia University.

Notice how the segment starts with pretentious scans of the place, including the oh-so-intellectual titles on the bookshelf. Then try not to gag yourself.

As for Pitchfork TV in general, since it's launch earlier this month "with hours of on-demand music content by the artists we love" (according to the press release), the new Web music video channel has trumpeted live sessions with, interviews of and/or videos by Jamie Lidell, Dan Deacon, Portishead, the Champaign band Headlights, High Places, Boris, José González, Joe Strummer & the Mescaleros, Bjork, Architecture in Helsini, Animal Collective and (timed to the big launch) Radiohead.

All very Pitchfork. And all pretty cool as it comes streaming into your computer monitor for free via some of the sharpest video and best sound I've heard online -- though of course, much of that depends on the quality of your computer monitor and speakers, not to mention your Internet connection.

Since it's still in its beta phase, it remains to be seen if PTV becomes anything remotely like the MTV of the Web/new millennium that the publicity has touted, even as founder Ryan Schreiber has downplayed the hype and positioned it as, you know, videos by a bunch of bands he loves -- or learned to love, anyway.

Pitchfork review of "Vampire Weekend" [8.8]

Vampire Weekend at Pitchfork TV

Vampire Weekend at the Pitchfork Music Festival

Ryan on Vampire Weekend in the Los Angeles Times: "Well, there was a real reluctance from me toward Vampire Weekend — I hated them probably the first five to six times I heard them. And I mean, sincerely hated. Eventually, they clicked for me in a really big way, which I’m still sort of conflicted about, because it was pretty vehement. I had to go through a whole period of indie guilt and self-loathing before I could admit to myself that they write a lot of great songs."

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I heard your review of Vampire Weekend on Sound Opinions and it seemed your main complaint was that the lyrics referred to subject matter that you found unacceptable. You took offense to the fact that they reference designer clothing and Peter Gabriel. You also took offense with their image as well. Yet no convincing critiques on the actual quality of the music. It sounded more like a pretentious analysis than a fair review.

I think VP's album is one of the best of the year. I enjoy that the lyrics aren't all about being sad, losing somebody, being in love, or poetic. You worship the Ramones, hardly lyrical geniuses themselves. Try listening again, this time pretending they're some blue collar kids from New Jersey, and perhaps you'll like it more than you think.

Nice Curtis, I concur. I too am a huge fan of Ramones, Joy Division, Libertines but you know what VP pretty fun. I wouldn't knock 'em down party pooper Jim.

nice curtis!, man leave vampire weekend alone.
I live in Australia and Vampire weekend are very low key on the low down were a few of us in my group actually listen to there stuff.
but the general population of Australia don't even know they exist. I love them and Love Indie Rock too, doesn't get any better. i've seen them live a few times aswell great live band

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This page contains a single entry by Jim DeRogatis published on April 21, 2008 11:15 AM.

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