Consumer Guide Album
Wild Flag: Wild Flag [Merge, 2011]
Such is the sad state of indie that two Sleater-Kinney stalwarts can reconnect six years later and just like that power up the most explosive rock album in years. Sure ex-Minder Rebecca Cole's organ adds thickness and punch; sure ex-Helium Mary Timony adds dream and, crucially, ax. But the shaker is obviously Carrie Brownstein, yelping like Richard Hell as Timony shreds like Ivan Julian, and the mover is Janet Weiss, who for some reason never sounds like the greatest drummer in the world with anyone else. Bouncing off each other like loaded dice, they could make you cry once you're away long enough to think about it. But then you realize that Timony is still a space case and Brownstein writes too many songs about music. One that isn't is "Racehorse," keyed to the wickedly non-indie line "We're in the money." Here's hoping she figures out how to keep it.