The Corin Tucker Band - Kill My Blues (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

The Corin Tucker Band

The Corin Tucker Band: Kill My Blues

Kill My Blues (2012)

Kill Rock Stars


3.5
1,000 Years found Corin Tucker stepping away from the big throated rock of former project Sleater-Kinney in favor of more introspective, folksy songwriting and world music experiments. That's gone now. Follow-up Kill My Blues is a full-on rocker, in league with SK's mid-period records like The Hot R...

1,000 Years found Corin Tucker stepping away from the big throated rock of former project Sleater-Kinney in favor of more introspective, folksy songwriting and world music experiments. That's gone now. Follow-up Kill My Blues is a full-on rocker, in league with SK's mid-period records like The Hot Rock and All Hands on the Bad One. It's back to basics and meant to be heard live.

With a full tour under way this time around, it makes sense that Kill My Blues would aim for playability. 1,000 Years was a great record, but it's something meant to be played alone, at home. Kill My Blues plays to Tucker's strengths: big guitars, big vocals. Yeah, it makes it easier to drop SK comparisons, but it also makes it easier to rock the heck out. Cuts like "Constance" and the title track are loud and lovely. If you want concise proof that Tucker was trying to write a fun record, consider the playful Spanish that opens track one, "Groundhog Day."

That all said, the Corin Tucker Band feels like they may have sacrificed something in the process. Blues is a solid reboot of a record, but 1,000 Years had all sorts of neat avenues to explore. While it could at times come off like a soccer mom record, it also packed heartfelt confessionals, soaring guitar solos and some groovy percussion. It was a multifaceted record that rewarded multiple listens. Blues isn't really like that (although dance-punker "Summer Jams" comes close). On top of the more standardized songwriting, some of the tunes also sound rote. Tracks like "I Don't Wanna Go" and "No Bad News Tonight" bash and crash, but they don't go anywhere. Blues is good, but it's also uneven.

All the same, Kill My Blues proves one thing: With Sleater-Kinney gone, fans actually get more music, split between Wild Flag and the Corin Tucker Band. While the returns are slightly diminished here, it's still a sound worth exploring.