Release Date: Jun 30, 2017
Record label: Glassnote Entertainment Group
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, New Wave/Post-Punk Revival, Synth Pop
Like many of us, it's safe to say 2016 will not go down as Chris Baio's favorite year on the planet. Opening with the death of his favorite artist David Bowie, the Vampire Weekend bassist's annus horribillis was compounded by the Brexit shitstorm hitting the fan in his adopted homeland of England in June. And then there was Trump. Man of the World is Baio's attempt to make sense of those crazy 366 days (it was a leap year) in the only way he can: through the sound of hook laden pop melodies.
In the four years since Vampire Weekend released Vampires of the City, the band's members have been focusing on their solo endeavors. Drummer Chris Tomson brought forth his personal project Dams of the West earlier this year, and, of course, leader Ezra Koenig has been moonlighting in various projects and scored a writing credit on Beyonce's Lemonade. For bassist Chris Baio, though, going solo has meant experimenting more with his DJ project, Baio.
As bass player for Vampire Weekend, Chris Baio doesn't skimp on infectious grooves on his synth pop solo project, Baio. That was true of his 2015 debut The Names, and it stands on his 2017 follow-up, Man of the World. The latter does come with added doses of anxiety and apprehension, though. Having moved to London, England and spent much of 2016 on tour in North America and Europe, the New York native took in events including Brexit and the U.S.
Chris Baio is a man of the world. He's roamed across the globe with Vampire Weekend, has travelled across two continents as a solo artist and lives in London. But as an American nomad after the tumultuous year that was 2016, he began to feel trapped inside his own mind, racked by anxious thoughts and dogged by a sense of loss. His sophomore album 'Man of the World' is therefore Baio's attempt at processing everything that happened across the course of those twelve months; he’s intent on documenting a sense of collective loss and disillusionment.
In the little more than four years since the last Vampire Weekend album, 2013's Modern Vampires of the City, the entire gang of bookish indie rockers haven't struggled to keep busy. Leader Ezra Koenig hosts his own Beats 1 radio show "Time Crisis" and co-wrote with Beyoncé on Lemonade, all while spending time crafting songs for the next Vampire Weekend LP. Rostam Batmanglij released a series of well-received solo singles, eventually leaving the band to dive headfirst into his own career--first with the collaborative album with Hamilton Leithauser and next with a debut album under his own name due this fall.