Matt & Kim

Concert Review: Matt & Kim, May 11, 9:30 Club

Posted on by halley in Concerts | Leave a comment

Matt & Kim

Everything about the Brooklyn-based duo Matt and Kim is madly, frenetically, amazingly, terrifyingly, gloriously energized. Anyone who’s heard their tracks recorded or seen their music videos would be hard-pressed to disagree. [Right now: Look up the “Lessons Learned” music video. Omigod. Stripping in Times Square in real time. In winter. Boss behavior. Note: not safe for work. So maybe not RIGHT now depending on where you are.]

Long story short, the pint-sized couple attack their instruments (and, in some videos, each other) with an unparalleled fever, fury and fervor that generate songs that are catchy, powerful, and bound to get your body moving and blood racing. Their rhythms have been described as “dangerously spastic,” and used to sell fast-paced cars, sugar-packed candy bars, and drinks meant to fuel action-packed nights.

Needless to say, I was pumped to see the two in action for the first time. I imagined they’d be incredibly animated, super happy, full of smiles. So what were they really? You know, for the first time in a long time, I’m absolutely at a loss for words. There’s just no way to do justice to the essence of Matt and Kim in a form as passive as writing. They’re unbelievable. Imagine a nuclear bomb exploding on a rocket ship placed on a motorboat being driven by a racecar. Visualize a birthday party of five year olds on a moonbounce fed nothing but sheet cake, 5-hour energies, and crack cocaine. Try running an ironman followed by an ultra-marathon finished with a tough mudder. That’s a tenth of the energy Kim alone has in her pinky finger. No, the nail of her pinky finger. The woman’s arms could crush a Mac truck. No sweat.

What I’m trying to say is, while I’ve honestly enjoyed other concerts more (liked the music better, thought the banter was higher quality, etc) Matt and Kim were, without question, the most explosive act I have ever seen. And they are so determined to elevate their audience to their same level – it’s incredible. And boy, does the crowd react. The duo got HUGE love from the sold-out 9:30 Club as they rocked the stage with tracks old and new – many from their recently released album New Glow. “Lessons Learned,” “Make a Mess,” and “Hoodies On” were probably my top three songs of the night. But the music was essentially background entertainment to the show that Matt and Kim put on. They threw confetti, they dance-partied, they climbed on instruments, they shouted, they cursed, they demanded crowd-surfing, they hyped, they screamed, they flexed, they threw out balloons, they “microscopic-titty-flashed” (well, Kim did) … they delivered.

My favorite part of the duo’s dialogue was Matt’s description of Kim’s warm up. Apparently, the woman battle-dances herself in a mirror before each show. Just dialing it up, dialing it up, dialing it up – by herself with herself. I just can’t fathom how that woman functions. But let me tell you, I’m glad she does.

If you’re thinking about seeing them: go. If you’re not thinking about seeing them: go. You will absolutely not experience anything like it anywhere else. They are the antithesis of FOMO – you’ll know you’re at the most fun spot in your city at that moment if Matt and Kim are in the same venue you are.

SXSW Review: Matt & Kim, March 12, Fader Fort

Posted on by Paul in Concerts, South By Southwest | Leave a comment


At this point, it almost seems pointless to write a review of a Matt & Kim show since we’ve kind of said it all before in previous reviews on this site – super energetic, super positive arbiters of good times. Oh, and there’s balloons and confetti. And booty dancing on Kim’s part. That’s pretty much the Brooklyn duo in a nutshell.Seriously, Matt & Kim, why do you have to be so goddamn happy all the time? Why can’t you just get all depressed and write some sad, drone-based jams about how life is terrible? At least then, I’d have something new to report other than, “Yup, it was fun.” I realize that’s a ridiculous thing to complain about but there it is.

Taking to the stage after a pretty underwhelming intro by some representative of show sponsor Dell (whose speech amounted to “I won’t stand up here and bore you, here’s Matt and Kim to do their thing”), Matt and Kim proceeded to bring the good times, as they are wont to do. These two seem to love performing at SXSW, telling the crowd a story of their first time at the event a few years ago when they decided that they could either give in to exhaustion or party harder than ever. They chose the latter and I imagine they never looked back. They certainly seemed to have had a few drinks already prior to their show and wanted the crowd to party along with them, with Kim asking the crowd if anybody had gotten laid, encouraging everyone to chug a beer along with her, and more shenanigans, all while still pretty much kicking ass on the drums. In that sense, Matt & Kim’s show at Fader Fort exemplified what SXSW is all about for that percentage of attendees who aren’t all that interested in attending conferences and networking – it’s all about the party.

Best of 2011: Celeste’s picks

Posted on by Celeste in Year End Reviews | Leave a comment

Matt & Kim

Best of 2011: (Some of the things on this list might have been created earlier than 2011, but being that I live in my own little shmience bubble, 2011 is when their existence became known to me.)

Best websites of 2011:

Jukesy.com Jukesy.com is a website that pubs itself as a mash-up
between last.fm and youtube. The user searches for a band, an album, or a song, and Jukesy combs through the two websites and pulls up all relevant material. You can then create a playlist from the material it pulls up. If you’re like me and you use youtube to listen to songs, this is a great application because you don’t have to constantly go back and forth between windows, pulling up new songs, letting them load, and then hitting play. It’s especially great for when you’re going to a concert and you’re not really familiar with the band – you can just search them in Jukesy, hit play all, and you’ve got a ready-made playlist.

Drinkify.org – Drinkify.org is a super fun website that tells you what to drink when listening to specific bands. Here are some of my
favorites:

“The Gogol Bordello”
– 4oz. Akvavit
– 4oz. Lemon juice
– 8oz. Ogogoro
(Oh jah totally drinkify – I’ll just go ahead and pull out my stash of Ogogoro.)

“The Beats Antique”
– 1 bottle gin
(I just like that everyone else is measured in ounces but apparently when listening to Beats Antique you’re going to need an entire bottle of gin)

“The Jukebox the Ghost”
– PBR
(That right there is true hipster status)

The pure power of this website is impressive – I have yet to stump it in terms of finding an artist they don’t know.

Best songs of 2011:

Block After Block by Matt and Kim – It’s hard not to love something created by two people as happy as Matt and Kim. Their enthusiasm for their music, their fans, and life in general is palpable. The music video just seems so appropriate because in my mind wherever Matt and Kim are present is going to be an automatic impromptu dance party.’

Block After Block (Single Version) by mattandkim

Sexy and I know it by LMFAO – this song just cracks me up. Every time. I’m hoping that someday I will be cool enough that I can honestly say, “This is how I roll – animal print pants outta control.” In the meantime as I wait for that to happen, I’m just going to do the wiggle constantly.

Helplessness Blues by Fleet Foxes – Something about this lyric “I was raised up believing, I was somehow unique, like a snowflake distinct among snowflakes unique in each way you can see, and now after some thinking I’d say I’d rather be, a functioning cog in some great machinery serving something beyond me” speaks to me and my 20-something-ness angst of figuring out what I’m doing with my life. I also have to give mad props to Fleet Foxes for deciding that they were going to bring hymnal music into style.

Fleet Foxes – Helplessness Blues by subpop

Limit Break by Deadmau5 – I never loved Deadmau5, but after seeing all his rabid fans at Lollapalooza, I had to begrudgingly give my respect – anyone who can inspire enough confidence in their fan base such that their fans are actually willing to sit down, make themselves homemade dead mouse heads and then wear them in 100 degree weather while being surrounded by thousands of moshing fans is pretty darn impressive. And this song is just so so danceable.

Deadmau5 – Limit Break by fuckmylife

Bizness by Tune-Yards – This song remains my favorite from Tune-Yards simply because it was the very first one I heard from her, and I’m still amazed that a human being can produce those noises.

Bizness by tUnE-yArDs from the forthcoming album w h o k i l l out April 19th on 4AD by terrorbird

Best concert of 2011:

I had to restrict myself to just one because otherwise I was going to go on and on and on. It was a difficult decision – I went to more concerts in 2011 than I have been to in all the other years of my life combined – but I have to say that the Hideout’s 15th birthday celebration with Mavis Staples and Andrew Bird was my favorite concert of 2011. I had been dying to see Chicago native Andrew Bird play since I moved to the city a year and a half ago. Unfortunately/fortunately, the other Chicago native headliner of the night, Mavis Staples, completely stole the show from Andrew Bird. The 72 year old legendary gospel singer (a genre I had never even really bothered to think about) spent a full hour at this outdoor festival just wailing out in her gorgeous husky voice an unexpected mix of songs ranging from Down in Mississippi to the Grateful Dead’s Friend of the Devil. She was obviously a favorite of the uber cool Hideout too, because they built her her very own Pepto-Bismol pink throne on the stage. She remains the only artist I have ever seen who effortlessly incorporated banter with the crowd into her songs, as she was singing them. The combination of Mavis Staples and the mind boggling 20 foot mesh whale that “swam” through the crowd while Andrew Bird sang, making whale noises in time to the music, cemented this concert’s status in my mind as best of the year.

So with that, goodbye to 2011 the year of “why not?” and hello to 2012 the year of “no shame!”

Song of the Day: Matt & Kim – Good Old Fashion Nightmare

Posted on by Mark in Song of the Day | Leave a comment

I can’t help but think of Tim Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas every time I listen to Matt & Kim’s “Good Old Fashion Nightmare.” It’s so light-heartedly eerie, so catchy yet creepy. The pint-sized husband and wife duo bring their inexhaustible energy to this tune, which is super distinctive thanks to its simple keyboard-strings-drum soundscape. Their comparison of ‘lost teeth’ to ‘white jewels’ and ‘train yards’ to ‘bone yards’ are a little out of left field, but just right for the cold and dark days of autumn-winter. Put it on your ipod next time you take a walk through your city this fall. I bet you’ll push ‘repeat’ at least once.