Executing pretty much the most perfect comeback of recent years, post-punk trio Sleater-Kinney sound exactly as taut and emotive as they used to on No Cities…, their eighth album. Just the odd development marks the decade spent pursuing other projects (Portlandia, Wild Flag et al). Carrie Brownstein (vocals/guitar) attains a new level of magnificence on the classy pop of Hey Darling while Fade, the final track, adds more heaviosity and curdled metal guitar to S-K’s pacey discontent. Corin Tucker’s yelp remains a thing of wonder, Brownstein’s lead guitar never takes the easy option and Janet Weiss’s drums anchor all the thrilling unease.
Kitty Empire is the Observer's pop critic. She has written for NME and occasionally crops up on Radio 4, 5Live, BBC 6Music, and has appeared on BBC2's The Culture Show and Newsnight Review. @kittyempire666