Vampire Weekend frontman Ezra Koenig has claimed that early detractors of the band “tried to pretend we were rich idiots ripping off African music”.
The Brooklyn band are set to release their third studio album ‘Modern Vampires Of The City’ on May 13 and, in an interview with the Guardian, Koenig said that criticism of the band’s perceived preppy and privileged image had been wide of the mark. “You can’t read it all, or dwell on it. It’s part of nature. It would be like getting mad at the weather,” he said.
“A lot of people wanted to talk about us; they just didn’t figure out what they wanted to say. If you read a lot of that press, it was meaningless and hollow,” he continued. “Referencing other cultures and making music that combines those things, it’s complicated. People with money, education, these things are complicated.”
He then added:
But rather than admitting that we understood that, too, people tried to pretend that we were rich idiots ripping off African music.
Speaking to NME recently, Koenig opened up about considering quitting music and admitted that he had contemplated getting a proper job before starting work on ‘Modern Vampires Of The City’. “I still loved music but I had this weird feeling,” he said. “I met a lot of people who worked in movies and TV and I thought, ‘Well, if I just started out as a writer’s assistant, I could start a new job at the very bottom’.” He added: “But when I say I daydream about going to law school or becoming a freedom fighter instead, it’s not because I’m brave or restless.”
Yesterday, Vampire Weekend revealed a lyric video for their new song ‘Hey Ya’, which you can watch by clicking at the bottom of the page. They also unveiled two new songs, titled ‘Everlasting Arms’ and ‘Obvious Bicycle’, during a live show in New York earlier this week (April 30).