matt and kim [2008]

Bottom of the Hill
San Francisco, CA
2 September 2008

Tonight’s show at Bottom of the Hill had so much to offer, most notably the exposing of 4 nipples (on one chest).

What it didn’t have to offer, thank you very little, was a time-honored BOTH tradition – the peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Apparently, times are tough, and the tremendous overhead associated with stocking both peanut butter and jelly led the sandwich to be eliminated from the menu altogether. A sad day, really. A sad, sad day.

But, I suppose, life goes on, and in this case, life went on with a smile on it’s face, ’cause what the hell else can one do when looking up at the most pure, unadulterated smile ever offered up. When Kim Schifino throws back her head, exposes those pearly whites, and wails away on that drum kit of hers, there is no pretense, there is no hipster sheen. There is only joy.

On this night, they were both playing through colds and fevers, Kim valiantly holding back the mucosity with what appeared to be a long stream of toilet paper; Matt coughing and sneezing between songs. Kim grabbed the mic (a rarity) at one point and declared that the crowd’s frantic and non-stop dancing had miraculously cured her, that her fever was gone. It felt like a revival.

Matt and Kim play simple, sugar-fueled pop punk and they play it on the edge of their seats, standing up and, occasionally, lurching forward and back in near-epileptic fits. And, as evident by the impressively-consistent mosh pit swelling and frothing throughout the set, they make it pretty tough not to move along with them.

Having toured in support of their first album for a good long while, the duo finally offered up a few new songs, from their upcoming sophomore release. They brought a little freshness to the set and even seemed to pick up the old favorites from the sometimes tired delivery of recent shows.

Though they certainly seem to have become more comfortable with their indie fan adoration (Kim no longer duct-tapes down her, in Matt’s words, “lack of a chest”), they continue to perform like kids living a dream, and that enthusiasm is just plain contagious.

And yes, on this fateful night, we were all treated to what supposedly no other audience had ever seen before – Matt’s famed 4 nipples. Kim proudly pointed them out, declaring with her characteristic wide grin: “they’re so big, you can suck on ’em!” Somehow, in some way – these words, coming from the mouth of the pixie queen of indie, are downright sweet.