Sleater-Kinney All Hands On the Bad One

Sleater-Kinney have, without question, solidified their place as one of the most significant rock bands on the planet. While there's been growth between each of their five full-lengths, All Hands On the Bad One shows an even more complex, dynamic and mature band. Carrie Brownstein, Corin Tucker and Janet Weiss are women who have come to terms with their strength, are confident, and care to share. Sleater-Kinney's lyrics have always been highly personal; filled with anger and awareness, the stories that they've told have been significant not only for their content, but also for the rarity of their telling. All Hands On the Bad One goes the next step with its incredibly honest and articulate reflection. "#1 Must Have" sees a disheartened S-K trying to make sense of their contributions: "But they took our ideas to their marketing stars/And now I'm spending all my days at girlpower.com/Trying to buy back a little piece of me." It's no surprise that Sleater-Kinney's sound has toughened as well, adding more oomph with super-tight tracks like "Ironclad" and "Youth Decay." Guitars are richer, drummer Janet Weiss adds her fantastic vocal harmonies to the mix, and the sounds continue to branch out. Bluesy, lovesick "Milkshake n' Honey" features mellotron, while album opener "The Ballad of a Ladyman" is chunky, catchy, and delicate, and "Male Model," well, it says it all. "We're here to join the conversation/And we're here to raise the stakes/It's time for a new rock n roll age/History will have to find a different face/And if you're ready for more/I just might be what you're looking for." (Kill Rock Stars)