Sleater-Kinney is one of those bands you don't like as much as you're afraid not to like. The group's hipness quotient and political correctness almost overshadow the fact that its music pretty much fucking sucks. The Woods is no different. While famed Flaming Lips producer David Fridmann has helped the trio of Corin Tucker, Carrie Brownstein and Janet Weiss slather a fresh coat of sludgy residue all over this disc, it's still an aimless, hookless, empty-sounding shell of what angle-ridden indie rock is supposed to sound like. It's funny that the players' so-called instrumental telepathy is often cited as a strength, seeing as how they usually resemble three people in three separate rooms playing three different songs at the same time. "Wilderness" and "What's Mine is Yours," in particular, suffer from stumbling, uncoordinated stabs at guitar-heroic noise that are about as empowering as a Holly Hobby toy oven. With their stridency, integrity and intelligence, the members of Sleater-Kinney make great role models -- but as songwriters, they're totally lost in The Woods.
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