Vampire Weekend are one of those rare indie bands who found mainstream success with their début self-titled album in 2008. The follow-up, 2010’s Contra, proved to be just as successful for the band, confirming them as artisans of formidable pop tunes and catchy, off-kilter lyrics. However, we haven’t heard much from Vampire Weekend for a little while, and so it’s quite exciting to hear that the band have been working on solo material in between writing a suspected follow-up LP. Bassist Chris Baio has emerged today with a track from his own upcoming solo EP, the Sunburn EP, entitled “Tanto” and featuring Matias Aguayo’.
While more electronic and dance-orientated than Vampire Weekend’s creative output, “Tanto” has the same sort of tropical sound that’s familiar to fans of the band. It sounds very beach-orientated, with steel drums being played atop electronic beats and rather odd, indecipherable lyrics throughout. As the track continues it becomes more tribal, touched by plenty of loops. It’s not unusual to hear the same samples repeated for minutes at a time near the beginning of the track. Around the four-minute mark the song shifts entirely, becoming more tranquil and relaxed, allowing for subtle finger clicks to take centre stage as the leading percussive device. This part of the song captures a more emotional atmosphere, showing that the track puts its six-plus minutes to good use. For fans looking for something a little different, “Tanto” is a good example of music designed for sunny beaches and tropical cocktails while also showing that the Vampire Weekend boys have been keeping themselves busy.