Brooklyn pop duo [artist id="2448334"]Matt and Kim[/artist] have had a whirlwind year. They picked up a Breakthrough Video VMA in 2009 for their "Lessons Learned" clip; "Cameras," another track from their '09 album Grand, was featured in advertisements the world over; and they picked up enough fans along the way for the track to be certified gold.
So, when it came for them to record their latest album, Sidewalks, out Tuesday (November 2), the band celebrated for its do-it-yourself aesthetic tried to call on the same work ethic that had already won them numerous accolades.
"We did come up with a good phrase: 'What would Matt and Kim do?' " one half of the duo, Kim Schifino, recalled to MTV News.
" 'WWMKD,' " Matt Johnson added, "and any time we ended up getting too musician-y or too educated, we'd have to dumb it down," he laughed. "No, but there was something about the naive way we came at instrumentation — Kim not ever playing drums, me not playing keyboards — and it like, made you think more about the songs rather than trying to show off on a damn instrument."
Recording Sidewalks also afforded them the opportunity to bring in outside help — something they'd never done before.
"This was the first album where we worked with a producer, and we worked with Ben Allen, who had done a lot of things we like from Animal Collective to Gnarls Barkley to engineering Christina Aguilera and Biggie and all sorts of really different kinds of things," Johnson said.
Still, the pair came to occasional blows during the making of the album, though nothing that couldn't be alleviated with a bit of breathing room.
"Kim and I are so used to working on things, the two of us. [We] basically share the same brain. If you talk to one of us and the other one comes in, they're gonna tell you the same damn stories. All the same things. We shared a cell phone for five years! Never had to call each other! But so, there was some head-butting," Johnson explained.
And if you ask Matt, it was all worthwhile: "In the end, we made an album we're very happy with and whether there was some head-butting or whatnot, I think it added to the whole process."
What do you think of Matt and Kim's latest album? Share your reviews in the comments!