Sleater-Kinney is currently getting ready to release their new album The Center Won’t Hold, but the process hasn’t been free of drama. Drummer Janet Weiss recently announced her decision to leave the band due to its “new direction,” but regardless, Carrie Brownstein and Corin Tucker press on. Now the band has shared the album’s title track, and it appears to have some of that “new direction” Weiss was talking about. The song begins as a minimal industrial-style track before exploding into a kinetic rock catharsis for the final minute.
Tucker said of the track, “‘The Center Won’t Hold’ drops you into the world of catastrophe that touches on the election. And almost like a mission statement, at the end of that song, it’s like the band is finding its way out of that space by becoming a rock band.” Brownstein added, “Instead of just going into the studio to document what we’d done, we were going in to explore and to find the essence of something. To dig in deeper. It felt like a really crucial part of the process itself, not just the end game.”
Brownstein recently addressed Weiss’ departure from the band, writing in an Instagram comment, “What am I supposed to say? She left. We asked her to stay. We tried. It’s hard and sad. […] She’s left us with a job to do, a job we also expected and wanted her to be a part of. Her playing on this record is amazing and she’s raved about this album to us and to Annie. But we have to keep looking to the future.”
Listen to “The Center Won’t Hold” above.
The Center Won’t Hold is out 8/16 via Mom + Pop. Pre-order it here.