Best Music of the Millennium (So Far)

Sleater Kinney, The Woods. One of the most thunderous objections to the status quo ever recorded.

Man, did the haters ever come out to play on this that I wrote for Wired. Scroll through the choices, screen the videos, scan the comments and let me know if you think I’m just whistling in the dark.

Listen Up! Best Music of the Millennium … So Far

Sleater-Kinney: All Hands on the Bad One (2000), One Beat (2002), The Woods (2004)

Although this conscientious Pacific Northwest power trio went on indefinite hiatus after lobbing The Woods‘ deafening truth bomb on our blitzkrieged global village, you can still feel that record’s reverberations from every corner of the globe. It was a splendidly noisy, invested affair, shot through with scathing riffage (listen to “Entertainment,” below) and wrenching human heartbreak (listen to “Jumpers,” below that). If Neil Young was right that it’s better to burn out than fade away, Sleater-Kinney’s swan-song incineration was a kiss-off for the ages.

What’s crazy is that few saw it coming. After the defiant All Hands on the Bad One found guitarists and vocalists Corin Tucker and Carrie Brownstein and incendiary drummer Janet Weiss at the top of their musical game, it seemed like there was nowhere to go but down. But when Sleater-Kinney’s fiercely political post-9/11 full-length One Beat arrived with a horrific scream, it quickly became clear that the trio’s best work was yet to come. And once The Woods came into earshot, there was nowhere to run, baby, nowhere to hide.

Rest in peace, Sleater-Kinney. Unless you want to awaken and return, at any time. That would be fine too. Really. Rock so sucks without you. MORE @ MORPHIZM