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Made in Shoreditch

I also contribute a weekly column to Made in Shoreditch magazine called 'Old East End/New East End', where I look at the relationship between the East End of old and new, looking at the changes and the stalwarts in landscape, residents and culture, focussing on one street or district each week. You can find it here.

Great Songs: MGMT - Kids

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

One day in 2007 I listened to a track a friend advised me to listen to. There I was, in front of a video made by some user or other on Youtube, that blue screen that they seem to love on there comes up and the sound of children playing is the first thing that hits me. Next comes the damn catchiest synth riff I'd heard in years set against some nice, simple sequenced drums before a bit more textural synth and bass kicked in. I sat and listened to that whole bloody song and by the end of it I sat there, silently, for a second or two and thought: shit! That's brilliant!

That song was Kids by MGMT, the best recent pop song I can think of. Shortly after I was devouring the delights of Weekend Wars, Electric Feel and Time to Pretend by that same band and loved it all.

Kids - Sadly not the video mentioned in this post though

When MGMT came along in 2007 they were necessary. Far too many shitty indie bands with annoying "oh oh oh" sing-along crap as their main repertoire were in operation. MGMT literally showed them all up and showed them that yes, a song can be simple, it can be quite sing-along, yet it can still be sang instead nigh-on spoken on in affected English accents and it can still sound fresh and exciting and good.

Kids is one of those epiphany-inducing songs that gets a band real exposure. The simplicity of it is bloody audacious to be honest, but, the simplicity just makes it even more admirable.

From listening to MGMT I was also inspired when I heard the simlar-sounding Brooklyn gang Yeasayer and Kids was the root of me caring at all.