Having recently reviewing Matt & Kim‘s latest “grown-up” offering ‘Sidewalks‘ we jumped at the chance to catch them live when they rocked up in london in March. It feels sometimes like the Brooklyn combo’s greatest strength, their energy and exuberance, can see them ignored by “real” music fans. But on the night I was pleased to see the duo had not matured completely.
The thing about The Garage is that even when it is (supposedly) sold out there is a lot of breathing space round the sides which suits me just fine. There is a notable high presence of chequered shirts and skinny jeans which I imagine makes this crowd not too dissimilar from the ones M&K usually entertain back home. Significantly, and to their credit, this is also the portion of the audience who are the most rabid when the headliners hit the stage. Tonight this excitable and youthful segment of the audience MADE this show.
This electricity clearly gets the band buoyed from the get go and very quickly they were throwing themselves into every number like their lives depend on it. Kim Schifino is an authentic ball of energy; her limbs flailing all over the place and a smile permanently etched on her face. Matt Johnson takes the role of the twitchy master of ceremonies speaking 100 words a minute with his nervous excitement visible and contagious.
Dropping bits and bombs from their entire discography means the band’s progress from 2006’s ‘Matt & Kim‘ to last year’s ‘Sidewalks‘ is easy to pinpoint. So whilst their repertoire mixes effortlessly its seems the newer numbers are more satisfying to play and perform. Of the many well recieved songs ‘Cameras‘ seems to win the biggest appreciation showcasing our cocksure heroes doing what they do best and loving it.
I have a feeling that tonight may not have necessarily won any new fans over. After all this type of cathartic mass sing along experience is not as fun if you are not screaming along to every word or in the case of the duo at this point sweating and dancing in the front row.
For those who knew what they were in for Matt & Kim gave 110% and a delivered a textbook performance. Catch them on their extensive US road trip in June, you won’t regret it.
Photos used by permission and copyrighted to Dan Smyth Photography