Our protest songs
are here! Portland Oregon based female trio Sleater-Kinney brings
us the album of the year, yearning for answers and valiantly asking
questions--their latest rock extravaganza One Beat is riddled with
more enthusiasm then the whole Democratic Party.
starts at the roots of any culture, and bands like Sleater-Kinney
are nurturing this grounded effort.
look it's time to pledge allegiance, Oh god I love my dirty Uncle
Sam..." roars the vocals of Carrie Browstein on a song titled Combat
Rock, a tribute to the Clash's 1982 album.
"I think rock
musicians can provide social and political critique that can stimulate
people," Corin Tucker of Sleater-Kinney told me recently, "A big
inspiration for us was the Clash's album, "Combat Rock", which was
written in the ultraconservative Thatcher era."
It couldn't be
more refreshing to listen to rock songs that are more intelligent
than our corporate muddled media ever could be. With influences
ranging from Public Enemy to the Sex Pistols, Sleater-Kinney is
not prone to sitting still on controversial issues.
"I don't know
why there aren't more artists writing about the pending war or the
government, but I do see more bands getting involved in anti-war
benefits," says Tucker. "I guess protest songs are sort of uncool
One Beat also
challenges our governments reaction to September 11th, "...the president
hides while working men rush in to give their lives.." belts Corin
on Far Away.
"I am concerned
with the US using military action on Iraq before all of the diplomatic
solutions are exhausted. I am afraid we are going to be caught in
a very violent conflict in the middle east, where everyone has nuclear
bombs and horrible weapons. We need to be diffusing this situation
instead of going in with bombs."
We must appreciate
brilliance when we see it, or in Sleater-Kinney's case, when we
hear it. They're a band you'd be proud to have your kids listen
to. With millions of albums sold, and rave reviews from Village
Voice, Billboard, and Rolling Stone to name a few, don't you think
its time for your to take a listen? And as an added bonus their
fantastic independent record label Kill Rock Stars hates war too!
"We'll come with
our fists raised, the good old boys are back on top again, and if
we let them lead us blindly, the past becomes the future once again."--Combat