Vampire Weekend, Secret Show, Chinatown, Halloween 2009
A costumed Vampire Weekend played a secret show on Halloween at a loft apartment in Chinatown. The location was fitting since the building was home to the legendary Madame Wong’s night club in the 70’s and 80’s. Keyboardist Rostam Batmanglij dressed up as a unicorn, drummer Chris Tomson was Ace Ventura, bassist Chris Baio wore a giant shrimp costume, but I could never quite make out who singer Ezra Koenig was supposed to be. The band tore through a full set of new and old songs with Mansard Roof and Oxford Comma sounding better than ever. It was a relaxed house party atmosphere with the main room crowded only during the performance. Throughout the night guests mingled around the kitchen turned DJ & bar area, the smaller family room space, and the rooftop terrace. The latter I discovered through climbing a long second stairway and half expecting to see Kareem Abdul Jabbar around the corner at the top as in Game of Death. Free Colt 45’s were served and, in a shoe store that was open on the ground level, free Tecates were offered. Ironically, no Horchata was to be found.