Vampire Weekend is working — and doing a good job — on becoming one of the definitive bands of the millennial generation. From its self-titled debut in 2008 to 2010’s “Contra” to the excellent 2013 release “Modern Vampires of the City,” this band has covered topics from schooling to romance to death in this sort of Ivy League, intellectualized demeanor. Even with those descriptors, this band lacks pretension; without parsing their words, the songs are nonetheless catchy and sound like everything while simultaneously sound like no other artist. In summation, Vampire Weekend rocks.
Such was proven further with the band’s show Monday night at the Lifestyle Communities Pavilion. Although touring in support of its spring release, “Modern Vampires of the City,” the set list was varied with songs from all three of the band’s records (albeit most songs from “Contra” were absent). The winning tunes of the night were “Diane Young,” “A-Punk” and show-closer “Walcott,” which created pockets of all-out friendly brawls within the pit.
Their more subdued work carried over nicely with audience members as well. It was “Step,” and especially “Oxford Comma,” that garnered cheerful sing-a-longs and memories of high school (that is, for those no longer in high school in attendance).
Vampire Weekend did not take many liberties with its performance, as I expect most live rock bands to do. There was one moment where main set closers “Giving Up the Gun” and “Obvious Bicycle” saw revved-up, deep vibrations of bass and flourishing percussive timbres. Sans that moment, the show was executed from record, but hardly to anyone’s dismay. The musicianship of the band was established with the live performance, namely frontman Ezra Koenig, who I learned plays guitar like a modern-day Dick Dale. It was apparent any excess jamming would have been extraneous for a band like Vampire Weekend.
The only issue with the evening’s show was the omission of Vampire Weekend’s first-ever single “Mansard Roof” from the set list. Considering its history with the band, it seemed fairly blatant to me that it was not played — still a minor inconvenience for an otherwise phenomenal show.
Vampire Weekend continually puts out material that’s instantly lovable, no matter how the music is consumed by the listener. Monday night’s concert was filled to the brim — I heard it sold out by showtime — with literally concert-goers of all ages (I saw two women of my mother’s age enter the pit as well as several kids far from their teenage years) and they were all overflowing with exuberance for the band.
Timeless is a prestigious acclaim for an artist, but I think the LC show physically proved Vampire Weekend is just that.