Sunday, June 21, 2009

MATT & KIM/Grand review

I can always at least appreciate an artist who sets out to create good pop music.
When an artist throws away the rule book and successfully creates GREAT pop music that steps away from the preconceived idea of 'popular' music itself, then I will stand up and cheer!
You can't see me now, but I am standing up and I am cheering for MATT & KIM and their 2009 sophomore album Grand (One Label)!
This Brooklyn-based duo certainly fall into the 'alternative' music category, but they are more than your standard Alt-Rock duo.
Matt Johnson handles guitar, keyboards and most of the vocals while Kim Schifino handles drums, vocals and other odds and ends. Their tracks seem to have been 'created' rather than 'written' using the standard singer/songwriter formula. Each of the cuts are based on Schifino's rhythm patterns and unconventional electronics courtesy of Johnson. Then, guitars, bass and vocals twist these brilliant little gems into real, pulsating pop tunes that are catchy as sin, but not exactly radio friendly. Well, if radio was actually 'friendly', then Matt & Kim would be filling the airwaves!
While tracks like "Daylight" and "Lessons Learned" have received the most attention, the album is filled with equally exciting like-minded songs that are original, inviting and entirely modern. This is one act that knows how to use electronics without making them sound retro or kitsch and that is most definitely a good thing (and this is coming from a guy who LOVES '80s electronic bands and the modern acts they inspired).
If you haven't got a clue what I'm going on about, then check out the vids below: they'll help you understand a bit of my excitement. Then, rush out and buy the damn thing already!

I only comment on what I fully understand,
Stephen SPAZ Schnee

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