Release Date: Jan 20, 2009
Record label: Fader
Genre(s): Indie, Rock
Brooklyn two-piece ready for the floor, but not much elseDespite lyrics that ache to suggest otherwise, Brooklyn-based noisemakers Matt Johnson and Kim Schifino haven’t done much growing up since their buzzworthy 2006 debut. The trademark drums, synths and handclaps, coupled with youthful exuberance and angst, resurface here. Luckily, the duo hasn’t forgotten why people flocked to them in the first place: for impeccably crafted indie dance tunes buoyed by disarmingly catchy, bustling beats.
Grand is Matt & Kim’s loudest album. This acknowledgement, made knowing full well it happens to be only the band’s second proper LP, also comes knowing a louder album could not be made by this twosome. Call it the band’s lackadaisical stab at lingering brightness. At any rate, it works, perhaps, even better than the band had hoped, as its punked-up pop variations get married to sonic assaults on the wailing-wall of sound then get placed in the foreground throughout this dynamic duo’s aptly titled sophomore venture.
"I'm feeling restless; don't slow down!" advises Matt Johnson during Grand, the hyperkinetic follow-up to Matt & Kim's equally hyperkinetic debut. Grand makes good use of that advice, sandwiching 11 songs into a half-hour blast of snare hits and bouncing, buzzing synthesizer riffs. Johnson handles the bulk of the vocals, singing every song in a nasal, nerd-chic tenor while overdubbing his own harmonies.
Strange how refreshing it is when a Brooklyn band sings about living there. Denizens of the borough often want to separate themselves from the place, especially musicians. They're either bearded and woodsy or cerebral, experimental and precious. Matt Johnson makes no apologies for being a young person living in an urban hipster utopia, celebrating it on Grand (named after a Brooklyn street).