Vampire Weekend big gun Rostam Batmanglij has announced his departure from the band.
After nearly a decade of playing with the US indie rockers, the producer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and founding member has decided to call it quits.
“My identity as a songwriter + producer, I realized, needs to stand on its own,” he informed fans via Twitter. “Still connected to the ppl I work with, but through the songs we make together.”
He continued: “I can’t even begin to express the joy I get from writing songs, both on my own + with others, I hold it all sacred. There is so much amazing music — all of it dear to me — on its way to you. It’s an exciting time. And I feel lucky to share it with you.”
Arguably Vampire Weekend’s MVP, Batmanglij has been with the band since their formation in 2006. But there’s some good news: it seems his departure won’t prevent him from continuing to work with the group going forward, with the producer adding that he will still “continue to collaborate on future projects + future VW songs”.
Speaking in May of last year, Vampire Weekend frontman Ezra Koenig said the band were currently in the “off-period” and “working on some other things, doing things here and there but you know, really just trying to not think about music too much”, while revealing that the release of their fourth album was still a long way off.
During that “off-period”, Batmanglij has been busy with numerous side projects, including his Wesley Miles collab Discovery, as well as production duties for the likes of Charli XCX, Wavves and Cloud Nothings, and Carly Rae Jepsen.
According to Consequence Of Sound, he also reportedly has a hand in forthcoming LPs from both HAIM and Wesley Miles’s Ra Ra Riot.
Check out his full statement, and recently-released solo single, EOS, below.
At the time of writing, Vampire Weekend have yet to issue their own official statement regarding Batmanglij’s departure from the band. However, they have retweeted his original post.
UPDATE 27/01/16, 11.05am: Frontman Ezra Koenig has addressed Rostam Batmanglij’s departure from Vampire Weekend and what it means for the future of the band.
Watch: Rostam – EOS
— Rostam 🦇 Batmanglij 👻🎃 (@matsoR) January 26, 2016