After performing and building anticipation of where they are heading on their new album at SXSW, Vampire Weekend announced that they are droping two new songs today. "Diane Young" was officially premiered earlier on BBC Radio One, immediately followed by Youtube releases of both of their new songs.
The title "Diane Young" references what it sounds like when it is said, dying young. Within the song Vampire Weekend go off into various styles, where Erza showcases a Buddy Holly-like morphing wail that is held up by both electronic and acoustic elements. I would have to compare the overall energetic tone of the song to "Cousins" (off of 2010's Contra), as they both share a sporatic guitar solo and high energy, but where "Cousins" keeps chugging forward, "Diane Young" transitions from the high energy to a relaxed vibe at the flip of a switch. Refrencing the Kennedy's, the lyrical meaning seems to revolve around the belief that life is not a race, take one step at a time.
"Step" amps down the energy about 8 notches from "Diane Young", with a laidback and subtle approach. While it also differs from their previous work, showcasing a maturing sound including electronic elements, they relate back to their old styles with synthetic string instruments, reflecting on their classic baroque pop sound.
The gap is narrowing in regards to the release of their new album Modern Vampires of the City, due out May 6 in the UK and May 7 in the USA on XL Recordings.