Rolling Stone Song You Need to Know: Mattiel, ‘Je Ne Me Connais Pas’
Georgia band skewers toxic masculinity on their catchy, rock & roll dance number
By KORY GROW
With a cutting garage-rock guitar riff and vocals that squeal with excitement, Mattiel sound like they’re embracing their very own manifest destiny — or, at least, making fun of dudes who think that way — on “Je Ne Me Connais Pas,” the latest single from the Atlanta band’s upcoming Satis Factory album. Singer Mattiel Brown toys with toxic masculinity throughout the three-minute song, declaring herself a “Lone Star Man” who’s “gonna get kicked right off my high horse.” The punch line is the chorus: “I don’t know myself” in French.
She takes it even further in the video, where she dresses in drag with a neat Johnny Depp–style goatee and shiny black leather pants that she manspreads with abandon. Around her are a group of bikini-clad models straight out of a Robert Palmer fantasy scene. She even rips off one or two scenes shot-for-shot from Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” clip — the woman on the exercise bike with the other swimsuit model walking by as she gawks at them — for peak toxic parody.
But the real reason this song is a winner is the tune’s beach-rock vibe, nailing the feel of a Sixties rock & roll rave-up, and the euphoria in her voice when she sings the gloriously highfalutin chorus. “What do you have for me?” she asks, again in French, after singing the title, as if she’s daring any dude-bro to translate that. She knows herself and the demo she’s skewering better than they’ll ever understand.