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Vampire Weekend
Contra {Japanese Edition [Re–Up]}

Vampire Weekend — Contra (January 11, 2010) Japanese Edition [Re–Up]

 Vampire Weekend — Contra (January 11, 2010) Japanese Edition [Re–Up]
•≈•   Na toto album bylo napsáno nejméně 39 recenzí. Album získalo ve třech státech 1. místo a v dalších osmi bylo v první desítce. Zajímavé čtení je o obálce alba, více dole. Acclaimed indie rockers who mix preppy, well–read indie rock with joyful, Afro–pop–inspired melodies and rhythms.
Formed: 2006 in New York, NY
Location: New York City, New York
Album release: January 11, 2010
Record Label: XL Recordings, Hostess
Duration:     61:21
Tracks:
01. Horchata      3:26
02. White Sky      2:58
03. Holiday      2:18
04. California English      2:30
05. Taxi Cab      3:55
06. Run      3:52
07. Cousins      2:25
08. Giving Up The Gun      4:46
09. Diplomat's Son      6:01
10. I Think Ur A Contra     4:36
Bonus tracks:
11. Ottoman      4:02
12. Giant      2:48
13. California English Pt. 2      2:56
14. Cousinz (Toy Selectah Mex More Remix)      3:21
15. Contra Melt B      4:36
16. White Sky (Basement Jaxx Club Mix)      6:44
Written by:
•≈•   Chris Baio / Rostam Batmanglij / Ezra Koenig / Christopher Tomson     1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9
•≈•   Rostam Batmanglij / Ezra Koenig     5, 10
AWARDS:
•   Billboard Albums
•   2010 Contra European Top 100 Albums 
•   2010 Contra The Billboard 200      #1
•   2010 Contra Top Canadian Albums      #1
•   2010 Contra Top Digital Albums      #1
•   2010 Contra Top Independent Albums      #1
•   2010 Contra Top Modern Rock/Alternative Albums      #1
•   2010 Contra Top Rock Albums      #1
•   2010 CONTRA United Kingdom Albums
•   Billboard Singles
•   2010 Cousins iLike Libraries: Most Added      #10
•   2010 Cousins Japan Hot 100 Singles 
•   2010 Giving Up The Gun Hot Modern Rock Tracks      #34
•   2010 Giving Up The Gun iLike Libraries: Most Added      #19
•   2010 Holiday Heatseekers Songs      #23
•   2010 Holiday Hot Modern Rock Tracks      #31
•   2010 Holiday iLike Libraries: Most Added      #13
•   2010 Holiday Rock Songs      #34
•   2010 Horchata Heatseekers Songs      #10
•   2010 Horchata iLike Libraries: Most Added      #8
•   2009 Cousins Hot Modern Rock Tracks      #18
•   2009 Cousins Rock Songs      #25
CREDITS:
•   Imran Ahmed A&R
•   Chris Baio Bass, Composer, Group Member, Synthesizer, Vocals (Background)
•   Nat Baldwin Double Bass
•   Rostam Batmanglij Composer, Design, Drums, Drums (Snare), Engineer, Group Member, Guitar, Hand Drums, Harpsichord, Keyboards, Lyricist, Mixing, Piano, Producer, Sample Programming, String Arrangements, Synthesizer, Vocal Harmony, Vocals, Vocals (Background)
•   Hamilton Berry Cello
•   Tod Brody Cover Photo
•   Kris Chen A&R
•   Jonathan Chu Viola, Violin
•   Jeff Curtin Hand Drums, Shaker
•   Anne Donlon Vocals
•   Marcus Farrar Percussion, Shekere
•   Tito Fuentes Engineer
•   Justin Gerrish Engineer, Mixing
•   Libby Gery Vocals
•   Ezra Koenig Composer, Group Member, Guitar, Keyboards, Lyricist, Piano, Programming, Vocals
•   Joe LaPorta Mastering Assistant
•   Emily Lazar Mastering
•   Fernando Lodeiro Assistant Engineer
•   Jesse Novak Instrumentation
•   Mauro Refosco Marimba, Percussion, Shaker, Shekere, Zabumba
•   Seth Rosenfeld Cello
•   Asher Sarlin Design
•   Shane Stoneback Assistant, Engineer, Mixing, Shaker
•   Chris Tomson Band Photo
•   Christopher Tomson Composer, Drums, Group Member
Commercial performance:
•≈•   It is the band's first album to reach number one on the Billboard 200, and the 12th independently–distributed album in history to reach the number one spot on the Billboard 200 since Nielsen Soundscan began recording data in 1991, while also being the first independent artist to have done so without ever having signed with a major label, after already established rock bands Radiohead and Pearl Jam and before Arcade Fire's The Suburbs. The album sold 124,000 copies in its first week and was awarded Gold by the RIAA on November 21, 2011 which means it has sold over 500,000 units in the US alone. 
Artwork and lawsuit:
•≈•   The cover of "Contra" features a candid polaroid of a girl from 1983. The photo was found by Rostam while searching through photo archives of that year. The striking quality of the image is what attracted Vampire Weekend to it, and which has made it a topic of such focus and discussion. Ezra states that when he first saw the image, he felt he read "some sort of hesitation" in her face, and that the band discussed at length what her possible age or emotional state could be in the photograph, without ever becoming certain of either. Koenig believed that "wrapped up in her expression is this question: 'How is she feeling?'" and that "maybe she wasn't even really sure at the time."
•≈•   In an interview, lead singer Ezra Koenig revealed that the girl pictured on the front cover is "now living in Malibu". Koenig has confirmed that the picture was taken in 1983 (by photographer Tod Brody) and was chosen as a juxtaposition to the debut album's cover which, while taken in 2006, looks as if it "inhabits the same world". Koenig also referred to the girl as "Kirsten" in a post on Twitter. Koenig likens the image to the Rorschach test as multiple meanings can be extrapolated from just a few signifiers, saying, "Some people get very mad when they see a white blonde girl in a Polo shirt."
•≈•   On July 15, 2010, Vampire Weekend, along with XL Recordings and Brody, were sued by Ann Kirsten Kennis, the woman who identified herself as the mysterious woman on the cover, for $2 million for using the photo without her permission. Kennis has said that the photo was taken while she was "a high–fashion model under contract with prestigious agencies in New York City." In addition, Kennis said that the release forms for the photo that was allegedly signed by Kennis herself, were forged. In a statement released by Kennis' lawyer Alan Neigher, Neigher said that Kennis discovered herself on the cover when her daughter brought home a copy of Contra and showed it to Kennis. Neigher also mentioned that Brody did not take the photo and said that it was taken by Kennis' mother. Despite this claim, Brody claims that he took the photo and says that he had the photo for 26 years until Vampire Weekend discovered it on his Flickr page and bought it for five thousand dollars. Kennis' own former agent, Sue Charney, told Vanity Fair "To me it is very clearly a Polaroid taken at a casting session." Koenig later responded on the matter and said that "this is the first time any of us have ever been sued, so we're still learning how it works," he added, "There's nothing we can say about it. We're not trying to be mysterious. I imagine in the next few months there'll be plenty to talk about. Given it's our first time, we just want to do it properly."
•≈•   On August 15, 2011, it was announced that Kennis had dropped her lawsuit against XL Recordings and Vampire Weekend after they paid Kennis an undisclosed sum. All litigation in the Vampire Weekend case was dismissed by Judge Valerie Baker Fairbank of the United States District Court for the Central District of California on August 12, 2011. There is no further pending litigation between any of the parties.
Review by Heather Phares, Allmusic.com; Score: ****
•≈•   Contra is the second studio album by the American indie rock band Vampire Weekend, released in January 2010 on XL Recordings. It debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200. The album title is intended as a thematic allegory and a complex reference to the Nicaraguan counter–revolutionaries, the 1980 album by The Clash Sandinista!, and partially to the Contra video game. On December 1, 2010, it was announced that Contra was nominated for a Grammy for "Best Alternative Music Album". This album was number 6 on Rolling Stone's list of the 30 Best Albums of 2010. The album was recognized as one of The 100 Best Albums of the Decade So Far by Pitchfork Media in August 2014.
•≈•   The scholarly Upper West Side Soweto of Vampire Weekend’s debut sounded self–assured, but on Contra, they step out of their ivory tower with just as much confidence. In all senses of the term, this is a sophomore album. The band still flaunts the collegiate sense of discovery that made Vampire Weekend charming — and sometimes too precious — but with more maturity and creativity. Another Discovery is just as much of a force on Contra as any of the band’s much–noted influences (Afro–pop, Paul Simon’s Graceland): Rostam Batmanglij’s electro–hip–hop–pop project with Ra Ra Riot’s Wes Miles, which released its album LP after the pair found acclaim with their day jobs. While Vampire Weekend aren’t as shiny and sugary as Discovery, some of that adventurousness rubbed off on Batmanglij’s Contra production, which plays to the band’s biggest strength: inspired juxtaposition. The album’s artwork, which pairs a blonde WASP princess in a popped–collar polo shirt with the term given to Nicaraguan rebels, hints at the flair with which Vampire Weekend play mix–and–match on Contra. They throw listeners into the deep end with “Horchata,” which features a four–on–the–floor beat, thumb piano, rubbery synth bass, and massed harmonies — almost everything except the spry guitars that helped define their first album. “California English” goes farther, tweaking Ezra Koenig’s yelp with Auto–Tune, the bête noire of those who value “realness” in their music; for Vampire Weekend, it’s just another instrument for them to play with. On paper, Contra’s hybrids seem more contrived than they actually sound: “Giving Up the Gun” fuses baile funk, house and stadium rock into a sweet melody propelled by choppy rhythms. “Diplomat’s Son” is even more far–fetched and fantastic, adding samples of M.I.A. and Toots & the Maytals — exactly the kind of things you’d expect to hear on a young globetrotter’s iPod — to nostalgic chamber pop. The album bustles with so many sounds and ideas that it challenges listeners to decide where to put their ears first, particularly on the single “Cousins,” a blur of guitars and jump–cut drums that sounds like abstract punk. Despite this busyness, Vampire Weekend are looser and less cryptic than on their debut, allowing them to tell stories like “Holiday,” an Iraqi war protest set to skanking guitars (ever the font snob, Koenig can’t resist mentioning a headline in “96–point Futura”). Even the few quiet moments are complex: “I Think UR a Contra” closes the album by wanting, and hating, the kind of privilege that brings “good schools and friends with pools.” And though the band is committed to change, the same joy that soared through Vampire Weekend pops up on “White Sky,” which boasts a melody so irrepressible that Paul Simon just might want to borrow it. With Contra, Vampire Weekend make Auto–Tune and real live guitars, Mexican drinks, Jamaican riffs and Upper West Side strings belong together, and this exciting lack of boundaries offers more possibilities than anyone could have expected. •≈•   http://www.allmusic.com/
Website: http://vampireweekend.com/
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Vampire Weekend
Contra {Japanese Edition [Re–Up]}

 

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