Steve Buscemi’s IMDb page is a bottomless pit of cult classics and successful TV roles in which diversity thrives like wildfire. The actor has recently added to his CV further by taking on the role of director for Vampire Weekend’s Amex Unstaged performance. Recently discovering he was a distant cousin of bassist Chris Baio and a fellow New Yorker, Buscemi did everything for the band from choosing their set list, flyering for the gig and pestering the guys backstage. Check out his collection of promo shorts were he awkwardly gets brushed off by Grimes and forces Vampire Weekend to enjoy Easter.
Credit card provider American Express have been championing many of the Music Industries stand out artists over the past couple of years with a programme of exclusive concerts with a twist. “Unstaged: An Original Series from American Express” is a series of live and digitally streamed performances from artists as influential and diverse as Jack White and Arcade Fire for both Amex Cardmembers and music enthusiasts alike. Not only are the concerts streamed but the shows are put into the hands of some of films top directors, including Werner Herzog who directed The Killers’ performance. The Vampire Weekend videos are tinged with comedic awkwardness that pairs the band up with Buscemi who portrays a clueless character akin to that of Murray from Flight of the Concords.
For many fans, New Yorkers Vampire Weekend simply stand out as the most inventive indie band to jump out of music scene in the late noughties. Their self-titled debut album won the admiration of music lovers everywhere mixing pop gems with African undertones and glimmers of bratty punk in early successes such as A-Punk and Mansard Roof. Keeping us on our toes witty lines about Oxford Comma’s and classical arrangements the foursome continues to keep the critics anticipating the bands development. Over their last album, Contra, the band have undeniably matured and developed musically into a classic American band and their new album Modern Vampires in the City – released on May 14th – promises to deliver more playful indie that will be sure to please their fans
Much like their set at Coachella, The Unstaged set gave the band a decent platform to mix it up and give fans a taste of their upcoming release performing new tunes such as ‘Diane Young’ and ‘Ya Hey’ as well as past hits such as ‘Cape Cod’ and ‘Cousins’ that whipped the crowd into a sing song. What really bought the gig into the digital age was the ability for the audience to choose their Camera – The audience were able to control their viewing experience throughout gig by switching between the main director’s stream and a second camera to capture alternative vantage points, from backstage to the front row.
To go see Vampire Weekend play, check out the Ticketmaster site for tickets. American Express cardholders can benefit from rewards such as preferred seating to give them access to gigs and events. If you can’t go watch them yourself, you can watch the Amex Unstaged performance in full HERE.