Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you

all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,

the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.

— Derek Walcott, from “Love After Love”


The origins of the name Vampire Weekend and many of the songs on the album begin with a film that singer Ezra Koenig attempted to make during the summers of his freshman and sophomore years at Columbia University. Inspired by the 1987 vampire film The Lost Boys, Koenig decided to make his own New England vampire movie. Bassist Chris Baio said “For two days he filmed this movie called “Vampire Weekend” about this guy named Walcott whose dad gets killed by vampires, and he travels up to Cape Cod to warn the mayor of Cape Cod that vampires are attacking the country.” Around the time the band got together in their senior year, Koenig found the footage and the name stuck with the band. While the song “Walcott” is the only song directly about the film, references are sprinkled throughout the album, in the lyrics of “A-Punk” and the title of the song “Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa.”

Above: A “trailer” Ezra Koenig put together for “Vampire Weekend.”