Friday, December 10, 2010

Music Reviews: Matt & Kim, Weezer

Matt Kim - Sidewalks

Matt & Kim, aka the happiest couple in rock ’n’ roll, have always loved to get down. At the end of each show, they ditch their punk rock keyboards and drums, turn on the drum machine, and come out in the crowd to get the dance party started. “Sidewalks” is like the soundtrack for the afterparty. The record, the duo’s third, was made for the club. The hooks are as catchy as ever, but this time around, the usual bare-bones arrangements have been injected with a heavy dose of production — most notably huge hip-hop beats. There a bunch of great songs here (“Block After Block,” “Cameras,” “Red Paint,” “Wires”), but the record’s glossy sheen smooths out many of the wrinkles that make this band so fun to listen to. These songs will likely play better live, when they’re stripped down to the simple keyboards and drums that have induced booty-shaking for the past half decade.

Rating: 3 of 4

Weezer - Death to False Metal

You best watch your step or you’ll trip over a new Weezer album —the band has put out four in the past three years. “Death to False Metal” is a collection of newly recorded, old material. With any b-sides disc, you expect a few things: One or two good songs, some OK stuff, and a few weird ones. Probably the biggest disappointment with “False Metal” is the lack of the last category. The record begins with two catchy toe-tappers (“Turning Up the Radio,” “I Don’t Want Your Loving”) before falling into the formulaic mediocrity that has plagued each of Weezer’s past few records. It would be nice to hear some grand gestures, even if they were great disasters —just to know the band is still trying. Unfortunately, the only deviations from the norm are the slightly nu metal “Everyone,” the trudging cover of Toni Braxton’s “Unbreak My Heart” and the spacey “Autopilot.” Still, there are a few rough gems (check out the moody “Trampoline”) and, for a b-sides album, that’s all you can really ask for.

Rating: 2.5 of 4


Cheeseboy said...

I listened to this Matt & Kim album for the first time last night and it blew me away. I am actually a little surprised by this review. I think this is their best album so far.

But, they still are not my favorite couple band. Still Mates of State for me. Although with albums like this, Matt & Kim are definitely catching up.

BTW, my top 40 albums of the year will be released soon. Can you feel the excitement. Where will this Matt & Kim album fall?

su-tang 3000 said...

First of all, if you have a top 40 list it means you love EVERYTHING. Where's the fun in that?

About Matt & Kim. I have a feeling if you were to poll folks, this new record would either be the favorite or least favorite. No middle ground.

I like the really rudimentary feel of the first record, felt okay about the progression of the second, and am turned off by the production on the third. All that said, I still consider myself a Matt & Kim superfan, for whatever that's worth.