“This Life” by Vampire Weekend
Succinctly put, Vampire Weekend’s “This Life” is a song about “cheating”. But what truly makes it unique is the perspective the singer is taking. And in this regard, instead of playing the accusation or guilt game, he acknowledges that both he and his partner are in the wrong. And on a grander scale, he also states that he has “been cheating through life and all its suffering”, which is not a statement of guilt as much as it is self-pity.
The main sentiment Koenig expresses in this song is one of shock – for lack of a better word. He seems to have been under the impression that such things could never happen in this relationship. And there is more than just “cheating” going on as “hate” is also rearing its ugly head, as well as “the drums of war beat(ing) louder”, insinuating that there is some serious beef between him and his lover.
Ultimately it seems that Ezra is playing the role of both the victim and instigator of a dying romance. He asks whether he is “good for nothing”, implying that he recognizes the mistakes that he has made, perhaps even throughout his entire life. But he is also obviously surprised that infidelity and discontent have come to take hold of this relationship.
Facts about “This Life”
- “This Life” is the fourth song on the tracklist of Vampire Weekend’s critically acclaimed album, Father of the Bride, released in 2019.
- “This Life” interpolates a sample from iLoveMakonnen’s 2014 track “Tonight”, with Makonnen being a known friend of Ezra Koenig.
- Owing to the above, iLoveMakonnen is credited as a co-writer of this song along with Ezra Koenig as well as Mark Ronson.
- Jake Longstreth, Ezra Koenig’s co-host on the Beats 1 radio show “Time Crisis”, plays some guitar on this song.
- Ezra Koenig produced this track alongside Ariel Rechtshaid, who worked on most of “Father of the Bride”.
- This song was officially released by Sony Music Entertainment in conjunction with Columbia Records on 4 April 2019, a month before the album it is featured on dropped.
Which artist sings the backing vocals on “This Life”?
American singer Danielle Haim, who is a featured artist on three of the tracks on Father of the Bride, also provides backing vocals on this song.