Sleater-Kinney: REBEL (11/3)

Sleater-Kinney: REBEL (11/3)

Bring earplugs.

Bring earplugs.

Corin Tucker and carrie brownstein perform on stage, black background and focused
PHOTO CREDIT:

When I returned to the claustrophobic dancefloor of Rebel Nightclub to see riot grrl garage rock icons Sleater-Kinney on Sunday night, I gotta admit the truth, I had my doubts. The Center Won’t Hold had failed to leave a lasting impression on this particular fan; not to mention that the sudden departure of veteran alternative rock drummer Janet Weiss was a major case of lunch-bag letdown. I went into the show surprisingly skeptical. I was afraid I was about to witness one of the most explosive rock groups of the past 30 years phone it in.

Boy was I wrong.

Let's make one thing clear, Angie Boylan makes no case for the Frusciante effect. Her drumming was tight and dynamic, completely meeting the high standard that was set by the revolutionary drumming of Weiss. Do I miss Janet? Of course. But Boylan is a force of nature and her live antics demand attention, perfectly setting the pace for the best show I’ve seen all year.

Carrie Brownstein and Corin Tucker hit the stage with their electric synergy as Katie Harkin and Toko Yasuda nabbed from St Vincent’s backing band added texture through keyboards and guitars. Fans of The Woods will be happy to know it takes up a sizable portion of the setlist. Set highlights like What’s Mine is Yours and Entertain practically burned the house down, giving Tucker and Brownstein room to lose their minds. Special recognition should be given to the lighting team who knew exactly the right moment to turn up the brightness and swallow the crowd into a white-hot supernova of ecstasy. Even newer tracks like Hurry On Home and Reach Out were played with such ferocity that maaaaybe I need to give The Center Won’t Hold another shot. It’s a rare show that actually gets better on the incline. By the time they walked off stage, the two frontwomen had given a performance that was etched into my memory eternally.

Then came the two encores.

Modern Girl, a fan favourite, brought the crowd together in lighter-lifting joy. Words and Guitar led to the most endearing moment of the night, the duo temporarily having to stop to realize they played the entire first verse and chorus in the wrong key (apparently a first in their 25 years of touring according to Brownstein.) They even broke out classic oldie Call the Doctor, a move that made this gleeful fan lose his absolute living shit.

And then the closer: Dig Me Out. The crowd exploded into pandemonium, Brownstein egging us on with savage shredding from the edge of the stage. It was the closer to end all closers. Then she shouts: “you know what, we’re fucking playing it again!” One of the greatest closers I’ve ever experienced and I got to live through it twice.

If you haven’t already been converted to the church of Sleater-Kinney, make sure to catch them on tour if you still can. Bring earplugs.

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Sleater-Kinney: REBEL (11/3)

City:
Toronto, ON
Venue:
REBEL
Promised Show Time:
9:00 PM
Actual Show Time:
9:00 PM
Duration:
?
Opening Acts:
Joseph Keckler
Overall Score:
A+

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When I returned to the claustrophobic dancefloor of Rebel Nightclub to see riot grrl garage rock icons Sleater-Kinney on Sunday night, I gotta admit the truth, I had my doubts. The Center Won’t Hold had failed to leave a lasting impression on this particular fan; not to mention that the sudden departure of veteran alternative rock drummer Janet Weiss was a major case of lunch-bag letdown. I went into the show surprisingly skeptical. I was afraid I was about to witness one of the most explosive rock groups of the past 30 years phone it in.

Boy was I wrong.

Let's make one thing clear, Angie Boylan makes no case for the Frusciante effect. Her drumming was tight and dynamic, completely meeting the high standard that was set by the revolutionary drumming of Weiss. Do I miss Janet? Of course. But Boylan is a force of nature and her live antics demand attention, perfectly setting the pace for the best show I’ve seen all year.

Carrie Brownstein and Corin Tucker hit the stage with their electric synergy as Katie Harkin and Toko Yasuda nabbed from St Vincent’s backing band added texture through keyboards and guitars. Fans of The Woods will be happy to know it takes up a sizable portion of the setlist. Set highlights like What’s Mine is Yours and Entertain practically burned the house down, giving Tucker and Brownstein room to lose their minds. Special recognition should be given to the lighting team who knew exactly the right moment to turn up the brightness and swallow the crowd into a white-hot supernova of ecstasy. Even newer tracks like Hurry On Home and Reach Out were played with such ferocity that maaaaybe I need to give The Center Won’t Hold another shot. It’s a rare show that actually gets better on the incline. By the time they walked off stage, the two frontwomen had given a performance that was etched into my memory eternally.

Then came the two encores.

Modern Girl, a fan favourite, brought the crowd together in lighter-lifting joy. Words and Guitar led to the most endearing moment of the night, the duo temporarily having to stop to realize they played the entire first verse and chorus in the wrong key (apparently a first in their 25 years of touring according to Brownstein.) They even broke out classic oldie Call the Doctor, a move that made this gleeful fan lose his absolute living shit.

And then the closer: Dig Me Out. The crowd exploded into pandemonium, Brownstein egging us on with savage shredding from the edge of the stage. It was the closer to end all closers. Then she shouts: “you know what, we’re fucking playing it again!” One of the greatest closers I’ve ever experienced and I got to live through it twice.

If you haven’t already been converted to the church of Sleater-Kinney, make sure to catch them on tour if you still can. Bring earplugs.

-

-

-

Sleater-Kinney: REBEL (11/3)

City:
Toronto, ON
Venue:
REBEL
Promised Show Time:
9:00 PM
Actual Show Time:
9:00 PM
Duration:
?
Opening Acts:
Joseph Keckler
Overall Score:
A+

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