1. Vampire Weekend – Modern Vampires of the City

Posted: December 31, 2013 | Full size is 600 × 600 pixels

I’ve been a bit indifferent to the hype heaped upon Vampire Weekend in the past but there was so much buzz about this, their third album, I figured I should give the pretentious New Yorkers another chance. Which is just as well because this was a stunning piece of work in its depth and ambition, from achingly beautiful harmonies and orchestration to kick-ass guitar and muscular groove lines. The production of Rostam Batmanglij and Ariel Rechtshaid perfectly complemented singer Ezra Koenig’s evocative songwriting. As one reviewer put it: “every track on here has its own weather”. Few songs stuck in my head this year like the delicate Step (“I feel it in my bones …”), Unbelievers, the Paul Simon-sounding Obvious Bicycle and the pop-rockabilly of Diane Young. No wonder it topped so many people’s year-end list.

Watch video for ‘Step’

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