Kids (MGMT song)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
"Kids"
Single by MGMT
from the album We (Don't) Care, Time to Pretend and Oracular Spectacular
Released October 13, 2008
Format CD single, 12" single
Genre Indie pop, indietronica, synthpop, neo-psychedelia
Length 5:02
5:28 (Time to Pretend (EP) version)
5:11 (We (Don't) Care version)
Label Columbia[1]
Writer(s) Andrew VanWyngarden, Ben Goldwasser
Certification Platinum (RIAA)[2]
MGMT singles chronology
"Metanoia"
(2008)
"Kids"
(2008)
"Flash Delirium"
(2010)
Music video
"Kids" on YouTube

"Kids" is the third single from MGMT's album Oracular Spectacular. It was released as a single on October 13, 2008.[1] The song was the center of a legal dispute with the former President of France, Nicolas Sarkozy, over the "insulting" compensation he offered for his illegal use of the song during a party conference.[3][4]

Rolling Stone's Kevin O'Donnell described the song as, "a noisy New Order-style synth jam".[5]

The version that appears on Oracular Spectacular is updated from earlier versions that appear on the group's EPs Time to Pretend (2005) and We (Don't) Care (2004). A track entitled "Kids (Afterschool Dance Megamix)" appears on the album Climbing to New Lows (2005).

On December 1, 2009, the track was announced as a nominee at the 52nd Grammy Awards in the category Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group With Vocals.

Reception[edit]

To date, the single has peaked at #9 on the US Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart, where "Time to Pretend" had previously peaked at #23.[6]

NME named it the number-one song on its list of the Best Singles of 2008.[7] In October 2011, NME placed it at number 99 on its list "150 Best Tracks of the Past 15 Years".[8] Rolling Stone named it #46 on its list of 100 Best Songs of the 2000s.[9]

Two months after exiting the UK Top 40, the song was featured in an advertisement for the BBC1 program Waterloo Road. From this the song gained renewed interest, re-entering the UK Top 40, and on January 16, 2009, the song reached its highest position to date of #16.

"Kids" came in at #5 on Australia's Triple J Hottest 100 countdown for 2008. In 2013, the song was voted at #64 on the same station's Hottest 100 from the past 20 years.

The single received considerable airplay in the U.S., UK, Ireland and Australia before the release date, charting in the UK, Ireland and Australia. In Australia, "Kids" debuted before the release date at #89, and currently it has peaked at #30, playing on radio stations like Nova. A Soulwax remix of the song was played heavily on UK radio ahead its official release as well.

The song got to the number one spot on the Norwegian chart, based on downloads alone. This made some controversy about how reliable the chart was, as the song had not been playlisted on any major radio stations and it disappeared from the chart the next week.[10]

In Chile, the song peaked at the #130 of Chilean radio Rock & Pop 20 Años 200 Canciones.

Use in media[edit]

Kids was selected for the soundtrack for the video game FIFA 09.[11] The song was also featured in the Quiksilver and Red Bull snowboarding film, That's It, That's All,[12] as the final song in Taylor Steele's surf movie Stranger Than Fiction, in episode 6 the BBC's Survivors, as the trailer song in the documentary American Teen, a trailer for Channel 4 show Big Art, the skiing film Reasons, the 2008 film American Teen, in the second episode of Paris Hilton's British Best Friend, and in season 2 episode 19 of Gossip Girl, "The Grandfather". The song has also made appearances as background music in the fourth and fifth series of the BBC One British drama Waterloo Road, on the BBC Three show The Real Hustle and in the Staples Center at X Games XV. It is also featured in the pilot episode of The Vampire Diaries, played near the end of the 2009 film Whip It, and in the fifth episode of the third season of The Secret Life of the American Teenager. In the seventh series of Shameless, part of the song was briefly played in one of the episodes. On the Nokia's website, they promoted their newest phone, the Nokia N8. In all videos (commercials and introductions to features), Kids was remixed by Nokia and played. It is also featured prominently in the documentary "Tapped", about bottled water. It plays during several scenes near the end and over the credits. The song is also played in the trailer for the film "Africa United" and may be used in the sound track. In Argentina, the movie-channel Volver use the intro of the song for the Advertising Space ("Inicio y fin de espacio publicitario" in Spanish). It was also featured on the television series Jon & Kate Plus 8.

Legal proceedings[edit]

MGMT was involved in a legal dispute with the former President of France, Nicolas Sarkozy. Sarkozy's UMP party used the song on several occasions, before offering the band a €1 gesture.[4] The band commented that "We believe that access to music benefits both the musicians and the fans, and has undoubtedly helped spread our music around the globe, while also expanding our personal musical collections" and that the reason they felt compelled to sue was because "the fact that the UMP used our song without permission while simultaneously pushing anti-piracy legislation seemed a little wack".[13] Eventually, UMP reached an agreement on a €30,000 (US$38,000) settlement fee.[14]

Music videos[edit]

Student assignment video[edit]

A video made by University of Southern California student Jon Salmon was created in December 2007 as a student assignment and uploaded to YouTube the following month. The video features fellow students Abby Fuller and Rafael Pulido lip-syncing to the song and frequently cuts to various clips from other YouTube videos featuring people dancing. It has since been viewed more than 47 million times on YouTube (link), over twice as many times as the viewership of the official video. MGMT later invited the participants to join them for the official video of "Electric Feel".[15][16]

Official video[edit]

On June 3, 2009, MGMT released the official music video for "Kids". It was directed by Ray Tintori, who directed MGMT's previous videos for "Time to Pretend" and "Electric Feel." The video was released to the Oracular Spectacular version.

The video follows a toddler menaced by monsters that his inattentive mother (played by Joanna Newsom) cannot see.[17] It begins with a quote ostensibly from Mark Twain, on a background of fire. The quote at the beginning of the video attributed to Mark Twain is actually a quote from Nietzsche's Beyond Good and Evil.[18] Then, with pictures of kids, crudely designed numbers counting from 5 to 1 appear. After that, we see the toddler in his crib. Suddenly, monsters show their claws at him. He is then picked up by his mom and she walks out of her house, then down the street, while the child sees humans as bloody monsters. His inattentive mother then places him down and he begins to walk down the street, and then begins to cry and run in fear of the monsters. We then see the toddler smile as he comes across the band performing the song in futuristic spacefarer costumes. The toddler gains a headband with "MGMT" on it just for watching them. A policeman with a bloodied face grasps the child and carries him to his mom, who throws the headband down, thus ending his only chance of happiness in the video. As the mother drives him home, the toddler sees monsters and a creepy sheepdog outside and in a DVD. Suddenly everything becomes animated and the van is revealed to be a scab on a naked woman. The toddler tries to run but his body parts disappear and then his head explodes into hot dogs. Various surreal things begin to happen in the animated world. The boy appears again and his eyelashes grow large and more strange things happen, including multicolored ghosts and a pig in a ballet outfit. The pig is knocked out by flying sandwiches, pizza and ham and the child is chased by a zombie in a hoodie, then climbs onto the hand of a giant Andrew VanWyngarden (the toddler believes he is really reunited with his mother). VanWyngarden explodes, and the boy spins around in darkness.

The video has been criticized for its treatment of the toddler who appears to be truly frightened throughout the video,[19] though it is stated on the MGMT website "No children were harmed in the making of this video."[20] Stereogum noted that the video "essentially polarized everyone old enough (but not too old) to know what the internet is." [21] While MTV noted that "They really don’t make videos like this any more … mostly for legal reasons"[22] The band later released a "behind the scenes" video through its official YouTube channel that shows the toddler laughing while interacting with the puppets and actors in monster costumes.[23] The animated sequence was done by Christy Karacas, director of the Superjail! TV series, as well as Henry Thurlow and Lizzi Akana.

The YouTube video has received over 30 million views.

The video was critiqued on the ninth season premiere of Beavis and Butt-head, "Werewolves of Highland".

Cover versions and samples[edit]

An acoustic version of "Kids" was recorded by The Kooks in August 2008,[24] to appear on the next volume of Triple J's cover compilation Like a Version. Another acoustic version by Australian singer Ben Lee appears on the bonus CD from his 2009 album The Rebirth of Venus. Cage the Elephant covered the song as a b-side to their 2009 single Back Against the Wall. DJ AM and Travis Barker also used the song on their mix tape album "Fix Your Face Vol.2: Coachella 09". Sebastian Ingrosso sampled the song in his 2009 house song, "Kidsos".

The song has been covered live by Weezer (in a medley with "Poker Face" by Lady Gaga), Chiddy Bang, The Moth and the Mirror, Mac Miller, Dr Fox's Old Timey String Band, Jack's Mannequin, Our Lady Peace, Lady Danville, B.o.B VIC, A Modest Proposal, Matt Hires, The Neon Rush, and Cage The Elephant.

In 2010, the funereal doom/death band Ankhagram from Russia did a unique cover of the song on their 2010 full-length album, entitled "Where Are You Now."

As well as performing the song live, Chiddy Bang also sampled the song in "Opposite of Adults" from their mixtape The Swelly Express.[25]

A list of covers, remixes and samples of the song

Versions[edit]

  • "Kids" featured on We (Don't) Care (2004) (as The Management) – 5:11
  • "Kids (Afterschool Dance Megamix)" featured on Climbing to New Lows (2005) (as The Management) – 6:07
  • "Kids" featured on Time to Pretend (EP) (2005) – 5:28
  • "Kids" featured on Oracular Spectacular (2007) – 5:02
  • "Kids (Vocal Mix)" featured on CD Single (2008) – 5:03
  • "Kids" (Soulwax remix)" featured on CD Single (2008) – 4:35
  • "Kids" (Datsik remix) – 3:43
  • "Kids (PSB Abstrakt Mix)" remixed by Pet Shop Boys and featured on their homepage (2008) – 5:39
  • "Kids (PSB Synthpop mix)" remixed by Pet Shop Boys and featured on their homepage (2008) – 6:11
  • "Kids (radio edit)" featured on Last.fm (2008) – 3:50

Track listing[edit]

CD Single
No. Title Length
1. "Kids"   5:06
2. "Kids" (Soulwax Remix) 5:42
3. "Of Moons, Birds and Monsters" (Holy Ghost! Remix) 6:16
12" Single
No. Title Length
1. "Kids"   5:06
2. "Kids" (Soulwax Remix) 5:42

Charts[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b ""Kids" single". NME. Retrieved 2008-09-09. 
  2. ^ RIAA Gold & Platinum Searchable Database – MGMT, accessed 2009-07-10
  3. ^ "MGMT suing Nicolas Sarkozy over 'Kids'". NME. Retrieved 2009-03-13. 
  4. ^ a b MGMT to sue Sarkozy for music use 26th Feb 2009
  5. ^ O'Donnell, Kevin. "Artist to Watch: MGMT". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2007-11-14. 
  6. ^ "Alternative Songs : Jan 17, 2009 | Billboard Chart Archive". Billboard.com. 2009-01-17. Retrieved 2013-09-16. 
  7. ^ "NME's Track Of The Year 2008". NME. Retrieved 2008-12-12. 
  8. ^ "150 Best Tracks Of The Past 15 Years". Nme.Com. Retrieved 2013-09-16. 
  9. ^ "100 Best Songs of the 2000s". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2012-06-09. 
  10. ^ "The Kids are Not Alright". NRK P3. Retrieved 2008-09-24. 
  11. ^ "EA’s FIFA Soccer 09 soundtrack scores". EA Sports. August 14, 2008. Archived from the original on 2008-08-22. Retrieved 2009-04-23. 
  12. ^ "[Official Site] Red Bull & Quiksilver present: That's It, That's All". Thatsit-thatsall.com. 2007-02-20. Retrieved 2013-09-16. 
  13. ^ "MGMT settle dispute with French government | News". Nme.Com. 2009-04-27. Retrieved 2013-09-16. 
  14. ^ U.S. rockers MGMT win piracy row with Sarkozy's party 28th Apr 2009
  15. ^ MTV Newsroom » Electro-Pop & French Toast on the MGMT ‘Electric Feel’ Set
  16. ^ "Circle Of Friends Make Magic In Los Feliz". canyon-news.com. Canyon News. 2009-03-01. Retrieved 2009-03-15. 
  17. ^ Franich, Darren (2009-06-04). "MGMT finally release video for 'Kids': Monsters and toddlers and animated hot dogs, oh my! | The Music Mix | EW.com". Music-mix.ew.com. Retrieved 2013-09-16. 
  18. ^ Nietzsche, Friedrich Wilhelm; Helen Zimmern (1907). Beyond Good and Evil. New York: The Macmillan Company. p. 97. ISBN 978-1-4209-2250-9. 
  19. ^ http://www.myfoxillinois.com/dpp/entertainment/music/dpgo_MGMT_criticized_for_kids_music_video_fc_20090605_2544203
  20. ^ [1][dead link]
  21. ^ Singh, Amrit. "Behind The Scenes Of MGMT’s “Kids”". Stereogum. Retrieved July, 21,2014. 
  22. ^ Montgomery, James. "MGMT Is For The Children (And Those Children’s Therapy Bills)". MTV. Retrieved July, 21,2014. 
  23. ^ "MGMT – Making of "KIDS"". 2010-01-12. Retrieved 2010-02-23. 
  24. ^ Lewis, Luke. "The Kooks Cover MGMT Kids". NME. Retrieved 2008-09-10. 
  25. ^ "Chiddy Bang - Opposite of Adults". YouTube. 2010-02-11. Retrieved 2013-09-16. 
  26. ^ Top 50 Singles Chart – Australian Recording Industry Association. Accessed on August 27, 2008.
  27. ^ The Irish Charts. Accessed on August 27, 2008.
  28. ^ a b [2]. Accessed on September 16, 2008.
  29. ^ a b c Billboard.com – Artist Chart History – MGMT – Singles; Accessed on March 13, 2009.
  30. ^ "ARIA Charts – Accreditations – 2012 Singles". Australian Recording Industry Association. Retrieved June 7, 2012. 
  31. ^ "British single certifications – MGMT – Kids". British Phonographic Industry.  Enter Kids in the field Search. Select Title in the field Search by. Select single in the field By Format. Click Go
  32. ^ "American single certifications – MGMT – Kids". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved June 7, 2012.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH
  33. ^ http://www.ukchartsplus.co.uk/ChartsPlusYE2008.pdf
  34. ^ "Charts Plus Year end 2009" (PDF). Charts Plus. Retrieved 2010-07-19. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
"The Day That Never Comes" by Metallica
Norwegian VG-lista number-one single
September 9, 2008 – September 16, 2008
Succeeded by
"I Kissed a Girl" by Katy Perry