The title of Vampire Weekend’s third album, Modern Vampires of the City (May 7, XL), is a slight misnomer. Though the New York quartet has always sung about a rarefied Manhattan, much of Modern Vampires was actually written far outside the city limits, at a friend’s guesthouse in Martha’s Vineyard. “It was the off-season and still sort of empty and mellow, a little misty,” frontman Ezra Koenig says. They’re not the first urban band to find inspiration in the serenity of a coast—the Rolling Stones famously fled to the South of France in 1971 to record Exile on Main St.—but the location happened to be a perfect fit for the group’s WASPy aesthetic. The resulting album—imagine four natty Columbia grads channeling Graceland-era Paul Simon—is perfect for blasting with the windows down on your way out of town.
A New Vampire Weekend Album
The band releases "Modern Vampires of the City."