Sleater-Kinney: Call The Doctor

Well that didn’t take long. Just one year and one album after their at-times-fumbling-and-halting debut, Sleater-Kinney released 12 songs and thirty minutes of almost pure brilliance.Call The Doctor is immediately so much more confident than its predecessor. The band has defined things to say and some really cool ways to say them. They are ably moving past the Bikini Kill/Babes In Toyland they were mired in a year ago, bringing in other influences like Sonic Youth (who get a call-out in the brilliant “I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone”). (Check out the guits in “Taking Me Home”.)

Lyrically the band treads in the same vein (mixed metaphor alert) as they did on Sleater-Kinney, with gender-politically-charged lyrics, but now the ideas are smarter, more advanced, and more multi-layered. They’re not as easy to write off as angry riot grrrl (not that I would be doing any such writing-off myself). I don’t think Sleater-Kinney of 1995 could have written lyrics quite as bold as “I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone,” where the protagonist wants to simultaneously be the object of affection to her paramour and also retain complete control over how much and how often she sates that desire. Or just try to listen to “I’m Not Waiting” and not feel your legs getting sticky:

I’m not waiting
‘Till I grow up
To be a woman…
I’m your little girl
Your words are sticky, stupid
Running down my legs

This album belongs in the collection of everybody who likes punk rock. I hear the band’s later albums are more highly regarded, but I’m going on record here as saying I don’t think that’s possible. Anyway, let’s find out. To be continued.

Rating:
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Mix: “I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone,” “I’m Not Waiting”
– “Call The Doctor,” “Little Mouth,” “Anonymous,” “Stay Where You Are,” “Good Things,” “Taste Test,” “My Stuff,” “Heart Attack”
– “Hubcap,” “Taking Me Home”
Filed Between: Slaughter (Stick It To Ya) and Sloan (Twice Removed)

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2 thoughts on “Sleater-Kinney: Call The Doctor

  1. Pingback: Sleater-Kinney: The Hot Rock | fatclown

  2. Pingback: Sleater-Kinney: The Woods | fatclown

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