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A Conversation With Sleater-Kinney

Janet Weiss, Corin Tucker, and Carrie Brownstein of Sleater-Kinney

Janet Weiss, Corin Tucker, and Carrie Brownstein of Sleater-Kinney

Sleater-Kinney is riding high, after pulling off one of the biggest surprise album drops in recent history.

Portlanders Carrie Brownstein, Corin Tucker, and Janet Weiss re-established their credentials as the baddest trio around with the release of No Cities to Love, the band’s first new release in ten years. Critical raves continue to pour in, and fans are frothing to get tickets to this spring’s tour.

We’ve been spoiling to sit down with Sleater-Kinney ever since Tucker curated a “State of Wonder” episode last October. All three musicians joined us in the studio for a far ranging conversation.

Editor’s Note: If you’d like to hear the full-length interview, skip to the bottom of the page.

On the song writing process:

Corin Tucker: The Sleater-Kinney songwriting process is really unique. The kind of sparks that we get in our practice space are really special to this band. We feel pretty comfortable just letting it all fly in the basement, which is conducive to getting a lot of cool ideas. Even when we were writing “Price Tag,” I was screaming the word price tag. A lot of those ideas come for me as a songwriter when we’re working together…I just start singing or yelling things when we’re making all that noise together.

On how writing and rehearsing in a basement affected the album’s sound:

Janet Weiss: In the end it worked to our advantage to create these explosive songs that were very concise. The fat was very trimmed off these songs… If you could see the room, it’s very small and very dead sounding. The muscular quality that comes through on the record was from making these things happen in the airless room.

On the newfound variety in their audience:

Carrie Brownstein: There are some people who have never even heard of the band until we put out “Bury Our Friends,” which is the single we released in advance of the record. There are definitely people in the audience who are teenagers for whom the new material is the stuff they’re most familiar with.
Corin Tucker: There are young kids, and I mean under 10, who will come to a show. Over 60. It’s pretty incredible to say that all different kinds of people like your music.

Sleater-Kinney will play a sold out show at the Crystal Ballroom on May 5th and at Sasquatch on May 22nd.

The full interview with Sleater-Kinney:

sleater-kinney carrie brownstein corin tucker state of wonder april baer opbmusic janet weiss

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