Matt and Kim bring the fun (and some of the same tricks) to their first Brooklyn headlining show since 2015
Matt and Kim are stuck in a time-warp, living every day like it’s 2005 and they’re still playing parties near Pratt instead of back-to-back nights at one of Brooklyn’s biggest venues. It’s brilliant. Mostly.
The show started with a safety announcement: Matt and Kim shows don’t come with a seat-belt so grab a friend and hold on. As the band play their hits (“It’s Alright,” “Forever,” “Cameras,” and so on), that message continues. At one point, Matt prompts the girls in the crowd to grab a boy to dance on. He corrects himself quickly after. “Or grab a girl.”
At Run The Jewels shows, a similar announcement opens the show. I don’t remember the exact words but the idea is simple. If you want to touch someone, get their consent and don’t even think of doing it otherwise. Run The Jewels aren’t the pinnacle of perfection (and other artists certainly open shows with this or similar messages) but watching Matt and Kim almost felt like while the world as a whole moved forward to 2018, parts of Matt and Kim’s performance were stuck in 2008.
On stage, the pair still feel like two friends who like to hit things. Kim Schifino bangs on her drums like she’s trying to break them and Matt Johnson shouts out lyrics like he doesn’t have a microphone. The pair has been doing the same thing on stages for over a decade now and it genuinely feels like they still love it. And if Matt and Kim should be remembered for one thing, it’s giving lots of kids who seem to have never crowdsurfed before a chance to crowdsurf. That alone is a worthy cause. But there’s so much more they could be doing, right?
The solution probably wouldn’t be to change the songs they write, since the band is probably better known for their live shows than recorded albums anyway. On top of that, “Forever” is one of their best singles in a while, and while the lyrics are somewhat repurposed from songs they’ve made before the beat is a little off-kilter and Matt has a nice nuance to his tone. But maybe it could be something small like adjusting their on-stage twerking to Migos and DMX to be a little less goofy and a little more inclusive?
Listen. Matt and Kim certainly have a political slant in some regards. Kim is body-positive, sexually liberated and proud. Matt is too. And of course, no one – famous or not – should be pushed to stand for a cause they don’t believe in but how the heck could Matt and Kim not be progressive?
Seeing Matt and Kim is still a joyous, beautiful experience. Somehow, ten years later they’ve managed to make rooms that hold 2,000 people still feel like parties in a basement. Seeing a Matt and Kim show for the first time is still probably a phenomenal experience. Seeing a Matt and Kim show for the second time probably is, too. But then, you start wondering what else they could be doing. Of course, it’s inferred that the person you grab to grind with should be willing and I have no doubt that Matt and Kim choose to dance to 50 Cent because they truly love his music, but why not bring those ideas a little more to the forefront?