Live music review: Vampire Weekend - Trinity College Dublin

Live music review: Vampire Weekend - Trinity College Dublin

Bar a handful of festival appearances over the years - the last at Longitude in 2013 - and an Arcade Fire support slot, Vampire Weekend haven't played Dublin since a show at the Ambassador in 2008.

The day after a glorious-looking late-evening slot on the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury, they finally made their return to Ireland, opening the 2019 Summer Series at Trinity College Dublin. It's been a while, as frontman Ezra Koening admits, struggling to remember the last time.

All is forgiven after a triumphant two-hour show, though, which includes taking requests from the crowd (a sumptuous 'Giving Up The Gun' - thanks to the lads in the bucket hats for that) and Ezra explaining they're going to play right up to the curfew - the band's way of saying sorry.

Vampire Weekend have lost a seemingly integral member, Rostam Batmanglij, but they feel reinvigorated, fourth album Father of the Bride adding country kicks to their assured licks for what is at least the album of the summer - VW are a band who revel under the sun. 'This Life' is glorious, a killer guitar hook and singalong chorus that the Brooklyn band make look effortless.

They'd opened with the noodling 'Sunflower', siding into new guitarist Brian Robert Jones's first guitar solo of the night. Swaying his hips - and boisterous bouffant - and singing along throughout, he looks like he's having as much fun as the crowd.

Of the new songs, 'Unbearably White' and 'How Long' are the obvious live highlights, but this is a greatest hits set - 'A-Punk' is still the ultimate indie-disco dance floor filler, 'Diplomat's Sun' and 'Oxford Comma' are as delightfully nerdy as you remember, while closing track 'Walcott' sounds like it's all grown up and driving around Cape Cod on a Harley.

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Finally got to see Vampire Weekend. Felt like the gig of the year. This life was as glorious as I'd hoped

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The MOR flourishes abound throughout - 'Hannah Hunt' is a little yawnsome - while 'Cousins' tries too hard and 'Diane Young' is perhaps the reason for the six-year gap between Modern Vampires of the City and Father of the Bride. But we're nitpicking (while we're on that subject - if only it weren't a Monday night!): This felt like it could be the gig of the year.

Two hours of tunes that thousands of people had been waiting literally years to hear live.

Hopefully, we'll get used to seeing Ezra and pals in these parts from now on.

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