Even before some people noticed a mysterious song called “1/20/15″ on Sleater-Kinney’s new career-spanning box set, rumors had percolated for a good year that the seminal indie trio was planning to return. The band had an enormously successful run that lasted from the mid-’90s through 2005’s style-changing The Woods, going out as one of the most acclaimed bands of the past 20 years. But the trio—singer-guitarist Carrie Brownstein, singer-guitarist Corin Tucker, and drummer Janet Weiss—were adamant about calling it an “indefinite hiatus,” not a breakup.
On Monday, some eight years after Sleater-Kinney played its last show in its hometown of Portland, Brownstein announced the group’s return on NPR, where she’s an occasional contributor. “Sleater-Kinney isn’t something you can do half-assed or half-heartedly,” she notes. “We had no desire to revisit sounds and styles and paths we had treaded before.”
So fans shouldn’t expect the new No Cities to Love—due Jan. 20 on Sub Pop Records—to hearken back to the group’s ostensible heyday of Dig Me Out, or the overdriven quasi-psychedelia of The Woods. A preview track, “Bury Our Friends,” wouldn’t sound out of place on The Woods, but it’s an exciting preview of what’s to come.