A sweater on the ocean floor

Vampire Weekend - Cousins
“Horchata” was the first single off Vampire Weekend‘s upcoming album Contra, and it suggested that the band would be subtly branching away from its Afro-pop beginnings while retaining the same relaxed, collegiate style that made its debut such a big hit in 2008.

The album’s first video, however, takes things in a different direction. The song is called “Cousins,” and it’s a frantic, jittery rocker that sounds a bit like “A-Punk” after a few shots of espresso. It’s not as catchy as the band’s best work, but it does show off some impressive guitar chops—check out frontman Ezra Koenig’s fills during the song’s instrumental passages.

As for the video, it’s a memorable execution of simple concept: a camera running back and forth down a track in a back alley while the band perform around it. For much of it, they ride along in a small cart in front of the camera, lip syncing and generally acting like goofs. It gets fancy near the end with confetti canons exploding during the song’s triumphant coda and showing the band in white paper (just like the picture to the left).

“Cousins” is out on 7″ on December 15 via XL. It will also appear on Contra, due out January 12.
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