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Sleater-Kinney - The Woods (Cover Artwork)

Sleater-Kinney

Sleater-Kinney: The WoodsThe Woods (2005)
Sub Pop Records

Reviewer Rating: 4
User Rating:


Contributed by: MikeMMikeM
(others by this writer | submit your own)

Seven albums is quite a large number for any band. Not too many will even stick around this long, and many of those who do we wish would have stopped around number three. This is why it always amazes me when anyone can still release such consistently great albums so far along into their career. In o.
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Seven albums is quite a large number for any band. Not too many will even stick around this long, and many of those who do we wish would have stopped around number three. This is why it always amazes me when anyone can still release such consistently great albums so far along into their career. In order to pull this off, they have to evolve their sound somewhat, but also can't completely abandon it either. The Woods, Sleater-Kinney's followup to 2002's One Beat and their outstanding Sub Pop debut, is a prime example of how this can work.

There's been a lot of talk about this album being louder and darker than anything else the band has released to date. Well, after listening to the first few seconds of the opener "The Fox," it can be seen why this is such an appropriate description. The song contains some ridiculously heavy guitar and drumming, and of course, the unmistakable vocals of Corin Tucker shrieking above all the noise. This will certainly frighten away some first-time listeners, as well as confuse some long-time fans. However, the song begins to sound better and better with each repeated listen. Things return to more familiar Sleater-Kinney territory with the next few tracks. "Jumpers" is a standout of these songs featuring some seriously dark lyrics over the bouncy dual guitars of Tucker and Carrie Brownstein. Tom Waits once said "I like beautiful melodies telling me terrible things." I can't think of a better way to describe this or many of the other songs on this album.

The bittersweet and laid back "Modern Girl" provides an excellent halfway point for The Woods, only for things to kick right back into full force with the album's powerful single, "Entertain." The song displays some wonderfully scathing lyrics from Brownstein regarding the state of music today. Those who are less than thrilled with the current "nü-wave" trend will undoubtedly appreciate such lines as "you come around looking 1984 / you're such a bore, 1984 / nostalgia, you're using it like a whore." It's followed by the more upbeat "Rollercoaster," which has cowbell, so you know it's awesome. Mention certainly must be given to the album's eleven-minute track "Let's Call It Love," a length that is previously unheard of by the band. Sure, it's a tad indulgent, as is nearly any song this long, but it is pulled off successfully and never really gets to the point of boring. It also demonstrates how impressive the musicianship is on this album. The classic rock influences really shine through here, especially with Janet Weiss' extraordinary drumming. The crushing guitars then seamlessly fade into "Night Light," The Woods' haunting closer.

In such a testosterone-driven music scene, a new Sleater-Kinney album is always a breath of fresh air. In all honesty though, male or female, it doesn't matter who the fuck is singing what when it sounds this good.

 

 
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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
bytheslice (August 14, 2007)

One of the best bands ever. "Dig Me Out" is straight up badass, "Hot Rock" is awesome, and the rest of their catalog shreds. More people should own their albums.

There_are_peas (June 11, 2007)

Utterly brilliant. Reassures me that not all of what is being produced today is useless noise (actually they have split up now). The Fox is one helluva track to start with.

Anonymous (May 2, 2006)

This is the best album that's been reviewed on this site. This is the best band that's been reviewed on this site. Scratch that... This is the best band ever.

Anonymous (October 8, 2005)

the more i listen to it, the more i like it.
excellent live show, too.

Anonymous (September 9, 2005)

Nothing wrong with indie loving dykes, you twat

"Sleater Kinney - Music for Indie loving dykes of the world."

StephNJ (June 12, 2005)

I love this album! It has the intensity of the first album but the maturity of a veteran album. My favorite songs are "The Fox," "Jumpers," "Entertain," "Let's Call it Love," and "Night Light."

Anonymous (June 6, 2005)

come on guys...why rip on this album when you could be ripping on something like the new finch or my chemical romance?

people are such chumps!

Anonymous (June 6, 2005)

-----
Posted by Joe_The_Gurl_aka_Sam on 2005-06-03 03:35:08

the girl who sings it..kinda has a cracked out voice..and it sorta sounds like country...not my style...it may sound good at the beginning of the songs..but blah!

-----

Dude if these girls sound like "country" to you, let me know what kind of country music you've heard, because this shit is awesome !!

Best album of the year (so far) !!!

bdmj

Anonymous (June 6, 2005)

Albums fucking boring

Anonymous (June 6, 2005)

Album's fucking stellar!!!!

Anonymous (June 6, 2005)

Albums fucking shitty

Nachohat (June 5, 2005)

Album's fucking awesome.

Anonymous (June 5, 2005)

haha www.punknews.org....www.mtvnews.org

Anonymous (June 5, 2005)

Sleater Kinney - Music for Indie loving dykes of the world.

ElVaquero (June 5, 2005)

most reviews said this shit was heavily sounding like shitty classic rock bands (but they said it was in a good way). shit i don't want shit like that.

CallingLondon (June 4, 2005)

(that was in response to "I heard this shit is supposed to be like classic rock. Count me out."

CallingLondon (June 4, 2005)

ah, yes, the genre that is "classic rock". some of you people crack me up.

fistchode (June 4, 2005)

the seymour a&b is the best there is...

I bought today from the whalley a&b.. it's not what I expected.. but it's pretty good.

gladimnotemo (June 4, 2005)

So, I downloaded this since I couldn't get any of the streams working. The other SK stuff I've heard ("One Beat", I think) was pretty boring, but this stuff is pretty damn good.

Anonymous (June 3, 2005)

Album of the year (so far). This album sounds like your in the studio with them. Janet's drums are phenomenal!! SOME OF THE BEST DRUMMING I HAVE EVER HEARD!! I just wish they would come to Michigan so I could see this shit live!

Anonymous (June 3, 2005)

Id also like to add that this has some great production. The drums sound so full and live.

Okay Im done.

-!GreenVandal!

Anonymous (June 3, 2005)

I never heard this band before (mainly because of a overzealous and annoying acquaintance that worshipped them) but I just heard that song "entertain"...and wow. I think I just had my mind blown. I really didnt expect this band to be THIS good. Very very impressed. And its rare that I hear a female drummer this great...and the vocals, god I love this.....im sorry, im gushing.

Definetly check this out.

-!GreenVandal!

thefineprint (June 3, 2005)

for Sleater-Kinney new comers, All Hands On The Bad One is a way better starting point than this album. I dunno, this is isn't really doing it for me. One Beat was better than this one too.

hungryjoe (June 3, 2005)

I don't have a problem with A&B...in fact the Seymour store was one of my favourite stores in Vancouver...but it doesn't make it east of Winnipeg. There's an HMV next door, but I refuse to shop there for reasons that even I don't remember.

Ollywood (June 3, 2005)

For all of you trying to figure what they sound like,
go here

www.sleater-kinney.com/dowloads

fistchode (June 3, 2005)

I don't know if you are against larger stores or not, but A and B has had it for a while now. Maybe you don't have the glorious A and B sound wherever you live?

hungryjoe (June 3, 2005)

Everything I've read (Pitchfork, Exclaim, and now this) makes me want to hear this even more. Damn you Sub Pop and your poor Canadian distribution. I'm still waiting for Orange Monkey to get this in...

ElVaquero (June 3, 2005)

I heard this shit is supposed to be like classic rock. Count me out.

Anonymous (June 3, 2005)

manomanoman... this album is fucking fantastic. mines came with a pretty sweet live dvd too.

it rocks really fucking hard.

oh and their sound is akin to riot grrll bikini killish music but it's less bratty and more thought out.

god damn that primal yell of "Land Ho" on the opener is fucking killer.

bannedinct (June 3, 2005)

sickboi - really good loud indie rock, its sort of hard to pin down.

Anonymous (June 3, 2005)

Can anyone make a rough comparison to these guys? I've never heard em.

-sickboi

lou (June 3, 2005)

good review for a good album.

gypsymazzurco (June 3, 2005)

This is a great album. One Beat was awesome, this is even better, more challenging. Plus, the way its produced reminds me of Raw Power by The Stooges. At low volumes it still sounds like your speakers are blown. I love it.

Anonymous (June 3, 2005)

This is the only record that I was looking forward to this year that actually met / exceeded expectations.

- Kirby

elliot (June 3, 2005)

it's crazy how similar this review is to the one i wrote and sent in. you say a lot of the same things i did.

this album rules hard, so much props to those S-K girls for dropping it like it's hawt.

Anonymous (June 3, 2005)

"think this is worth buying on a whim?"

i almost bought this last night at best buy with a $5 off coupon, but at the last minute i made the safe choice with the license to drive dvd. i probably should've gotten the album, since i won't see it for $7.99 ($12.99-$5.00) anywhere else.

Anonymous (June 3, 2005)

fantastic album this.

Anonymous (June 3, 2005)

Solid, solid album. "Jumpers" will be in my mixtape for best songs of 2005. You can be sure of that.

Ramo

Joe_The_Gurl_aka_Sam (June 3, 2005)

the girl who sings it..kinda has a cracked out voice..and it sorta sounds like country...not my style...it may sound good at the beginning of the songs..but blah!

Anonymous (June 3, 2005)

I liked some of there earlier albums that i've heard but i really don't like this album, and didn't like one beat too much...is something wrong with me.?

Anonymous (June 3, 2005)

converted many people who had not gotten into them previously.

alot of metalhead, oddly enough.

which is a great achievement for them.

solid record.

wyzo

fistchode (June 3, 2005)

I will also buy it on a whim tomorrow... along with some queers and mtx albums.. oh blowing money is fun

joeg (June 3, 2005)

think this is worth buying on a whim?

-i think so.

BrandonSideleau (June 3, 2005)

Havent listened to the whole record yet, but the single ("Entertain") is great, I'll be chacking the rest out for sure.

Kenjamin (June 3, 2005)

think this is worth buying on a whim?

inagreendase (June 3, 2005)

This is going to be on a loooooot of top 10 lists come December. I can't go anywhere without reading some new praise of it.

I'll have to give it another try, as the one song I heard might've just been overwhelmingly loud as its intended.

joeg (June 3, 2005)

Sleater Kinney never disappoints. I need to pick this up soon.

ubershep (June 3, 2005)

One of the year' s best.

adam (June 3, 2005)

This record is excellent. One of my favourite of the year so far.

-adam

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