by carl wilson

Are You a Corin Person or a Carrie Person?

s-k.jpg
The creators of the album of the summer, 2005: Corin Tucker, Janet Weiss and Carrie Brownstein.

I've got a review of this weekend's Sleater-Kinney show in today's Globe. It was my first time seeing them and I suspect it wasn't a standout show for them - which makes it all the more incredible. They played all but one of the songs on The Woods - which is the album that's really brought me on-board the S-K express for the first time, after years of liking them moderately - plus two from One Beat, one Dig Me Out, one Call the Doctor, one B-side and one cover. The sound at the Phoenix was great - crunchy without being stupid-loud.

For the first time I understand why this is one of those "which is your favourite Beatle" bands - I think that reaction is only provoked when there's a certain level of equality among the musicians in a group, along with enough of a character contrast to make the answer somehow revealing of the traits the chooser identifies with, to make it a bit of a personality test. ... I think I'm a Corin person who yearns to be a Carrie person. I could say more (like about the way that Modern Girl epitomizes the new album's subtlety with its chorus, "My whole life/ Was like a picture of a sunny day," which seems easily accessible on first hearing but gets repeated until you realize that it's a trick, a song about a simile about a picture of a symbol - not like an actual day but like a photo in a frame, a feeling familiar but unreachable) but I'll let you go read the review and then we'll chat.

Saturday's set list: The Fox/ Wilderness/ Turn It On/ Combat Rock/ Rollercoaster/ Modern Girl/ Sympathy/ What's Mine Is Yours/ Everything/ Light Rail Coyote/ Jumpers/ Let's Call It Love/ Night Light/ Entertain /Encore: Oh!/ I Want to See the Bright Lights Tonight (Richard & Linda Thompson)/ I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone.

I also saw Emiliana Torrini on Friday night, who was utterly, utterly charming. But the sound at the El Mocambo made me have to strain to make out the words to the songs from the back of the room, which was a shame. (And the place was plastered with ads for 20hz.)

Live Notes | Posted by zoilus on Monday, June 20 at 3:56 PM | Linking Posts | Comments (8)

 

COMMENTS

so i was composing this passionate epistle as to why you are so very wrong on this one, Carl, and then Miss Liss said it so much bettah:
http://www.nowtoronto.com/issues/2005-06-23/music_livereviews.php

gotta admit though, my eyes rarely strayed from Carrie, in Toronto but most especially Montreal. That girl could convert anyone. she's my rock n role model!

yeah i know y'all are talkin' all critical and shit but ..
lustily,

Posted by spitzer on June 23, 2005 8:57 AM

 

 

i tip my hat to you, sir -

thanks for the thoughtful response.

(i will concede that i quite often pitch my tent in the carrie camp, and did so far more often pre-Woods.)

Posted by lisstless on June 22, 2005 2:38 PM

 

 

No brush-off intended, Sarah - just my misinformation on Weiss's songwriting role. I had the impression she just wrote her drum parts and such, but not the actual songs. You, as the weiss-grip of the block, no doubt know far better. Sorry to you and sorry to Janet.

I still do have the impulse that answering "Janet" to the Carrie-Corin dilemma is dubious - because she joined much later, because they are the twin frontwomen and she doesn't really compete for that role, even if she does sing with reasonable regularity, etc. - but my commitment to non-binary thinking forces me to concede the point. Just like answering "George" to the "John or Paul?" demand, this registers some transcendence of the question to a higher plane.

Posted by zoilus on June 22, 2005 2:06 PM

 

 

OK. well, i'm not sure i agree with your janet-as-the-glue analogy, but that's your prerogative. i'll allow that she's the most consistent and solid member of s-k in terms of musicianship.

actually, carl, i'm a bit confused by your comment re: songwriting. are you just referring to the lyrics? cuz the implication is that janet's not involved in the songwriting process whatsoever, which is incorrect.

i realize this makes me come off like an insane weiss-loving lunatic, which i'm not (although you might disagree after reading my wholly self-indulgent review in this week's issue). it just seems a bit odd that you'd brush off an opinion with even the slightest tang of dissent in such a casual way.

maybe it's just me. dunno.

Posted by lisstless on June 21, 2005 7:24 PM

 

 

Janet's an upright John Bonham. Than again, Corin kinda = Plant, so I don't know who I love more.

Posted by radioDan on June 21, 2005 6:48 PM

 

 

Janet is a great drummer, but she doesn't write the songs in S-K.

In a passage cut from the review for space, I expanded on the image of S-K songs being composed of different squabbling elements like relatives at a dinner table - Carrie would be the professorial daughter, sensitive but a little sarcastic, while Corin would be the sister more prone to emotional outbursts, and Janet would be the more pragmatic one, holding the clan together - but willing to pound the table with her fork if needed to make her point heard.

Posted by zoilus on June 21, 2005 11:48 AM

 

 

corin and carrie are kid stuff.

it's really all about the janet. similarly, she's the best thing about quasi.

Posted by lisstless on June 21, 2005 12:07 AM

 

 

Regarding Sleater Kinney...Y'know I hadn't heard the new album at all before the show Saturday and the new songs were just awesome live for someone who was hearing them for the first time. Damn, but Janet is an awesome drummer. Great review, btw.

Posted by Mike on June 20, 2005 11:29 PM

 

 

 

Zoilus by Carl Wilson