Next week brings the release of Contra, the much-anticipated follow-up to Vampire Weekend‘s eponymous 2008 breakthrough—and we’d bet our balaclavas most of you will listen to it in sobriety and solitude. Actually, chances are that, unless you were totally over the band by the time their first record dropped, you’ve already streamed the thing on MySpace. In which case, you’re already noting new layers of collegiate cheek, from the self-parodic wordplay of “Horchata,” the opening track, to the half-popped collar on the Ralph Lauren polo worn by a distracted-looking co-ed on the album cover.
That irony-on-the-sleeve approach is mainly a wink at the haters—and mebbe a gimmick to avoid being, you know, just another boring white band. But we’ve devised another way to rescue these Afro-poppers from the tedium of hype: the Vampire Weekend Drinking Game!
First, acquire flagons of Campari, Chartreuse, Pimm’s products, and PBR.
Then, take a shot for every member of your party wearing boat shoes or scarves.
Ready? OK! Just set your stereo, record player, or hard drive a-spinning, and…
Sip Your Beer for any of the following:
- Any unnecessary grammatical puns or explicit references to conventions of punctuation.
- Any song featuring erudite name-drops.
- Any song conspicuously bereft of erudite name-drops.
- Instances of sartorial concerns (shoes, sweaters, balaclavas).
- Instances where it sounds like David Longstreth is sitting in as sideman.
- Any mention of a watering hole.
Chug Your Beer for any of the following:
- Any sketch of a character who wouldn’t feel out of place in a story by J.D. Salinger, a film by Whit Stillman, or an editorial meeting at Condé Nast.
- Octave jumps in a vocal melody.
- Any invocation of Latin American counter-revolutionaries.
- Any gentle allusion to the Clash.
- Any reference to barnyard animals.
- Gratuitous harpsichord.
- References to Latin American and Italian potables, Philadelphia comestibles, rice cakes.
- The resigned suggestion of WASPy iciness.
- Youthful wanderlust.
- Discordant references to fisticuffs or firearms.
- Nautical set pieces.
- References to public transportation or Uptown cab rides.
- Characters who make significant lifestyle changes in reaction to seemingly unrelated world events.
- Synthesized hand-claps.
- Wistful strings.
- An acute sense of to-the-manor-born.
Take a Shot for any of the following:
- Ironic deployments of diminutives like “honey” and “baby.”
- Nonironic deployments of “honey” and “baby.”
- M.I.A. samples.
- Instances of an arcane noun form requiring a visit to Wikipedia.