Listen to/Watch: “No Cities to Love,” Sleater-Kinney

Listen to/Watch: “No Cities to Love,” Sleater-Kinney

Leigh MichaelMonday,19 January 2015

Sleater-Kinney tore through the 90s with their girl-power punk rock. And then they broke some hearts with an unannounced and unexplained “indefinite” hiatus in 2006.

After an eight year intermission, the band is back again. And they enlisted the help of Andy Samberg, Connie Britton, Sarah Silverman, Gerard Way, Ellen Page, Natasha Lyonne, Miranda July, Fred Armisen, and J Mascis to share the good news.

Watch the full video below. You can also preorder Sleater-Kinney’s upcoming album, No Cities to Love,on Amazon or iTunes. It comes out 1/20!

While the grunge movement was meeting its quiet demise in Seattle (Pearl Jam Mike McCready’s reaction to the label ‘grunge:’ “NO. WE ARE A ROCK & ROLL BAND. WE PLAY ROCK. WE PLAY HEAVY ROCK. WE’RE A HARD-ROCK BAND.”), Olympia was giving birth to riot grrrl music. A fifty-mile stretch of I-5 separates these two melting pots of sound and noise. But whereas grunge was all about apathy, riot grrrl was all about power. Music was a way to push important issues—think domestic abuse, rape, female empowerment, racism, sexism–into households across the country.

For over a decade, this was the mission of the three women who comprised Sleater-Kinney. Music was their storytelling device. Pre-hiatus, the group focused on protesting the war in Afghanistan. Member Carrie Brownstein explained, “When you write a protest song, what you’re secretly hoping is that there will come a time when you don’t need to sing it anymore. It is the one kind of song you hope at some point will just be obsolete.”

Sleater-Kinney’s return might not be imbued with the same sense of political fire – and some might argue that a 3-minute video loaded with celebrities isn’t characteristic of a band whose last priority was being “cool.”

But I’m not going to overthink their motives. Instead, I’ll trustfully hop back on the bandwagon. Can’t wait to see what’s next for this trio.

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Hat Tips:

Sleater-KinneyRiot Grrrl, Ms Magazine, NPR First Listen, Image Credit: Flickr

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