Sleater-Kinney shares The Center Won't Hold's fourth single "Can I Go On" - WXPN | Vinyl At Heart
Sleater-Kinney | photo by Nikko LaMere | courtesy of the artist

The road leading up to the release of Sleater-Kinney‘s new record The Center Won’t Hold has been a rocky one, to say the least. After the sudden departure of drummer Janet Weiss from the band, its remaining members Carrie Brownstein and Corin Tucker have carried on with promoting the St. Vincent-produced record, and as the release date inches closer they’ve shared a fourth single, “Can I Go On.”

“Can I Go On” touches on the personal and political themes we hear throughout The Center Won’t Hold, exploring the seeming commonness of existential despair as Brownstein sings, “Maybe I’m not sure I wanna go on at all.” It’s dark, but musically more lightweight and upbeat than your typical Sleater-Kinney song. Watch the lyric video below.

As Brownstein shared in a press release, “In this song, a woman’s desire is used against her, so she turns it into a sinister infectiousness. The narrator finds herself on the brink of self-annihilation, grappling with the paradox of an internal darkness at odds with the pressure to outwardly perform modes of joy, relatability, and likability.”

In their first interview since Weiss left the band, Brownstein and Tucker spoke to The Guardian‘s Laura Snapes about the unlikely inspiration behind the new album — Rihanna’s “Stay.” Brownstein also shared that she had been adapting her memoir Hunger Makes Me A Modern Girl into a fictionalized TV show, but when pilot wasn’t picked up, she decided to continue to make new music rather than relive the band’s past. “I was like, why am I examining music through a historical lens? My relationship to music is right now. That’s more important to me,” Brownstein said.

The Center Won’t Hold will be released on August 16 via Mom + Pop. Sleater-Kinney headlines The Fillmore on October 27. Find tickets and more information on the XPN Concert Calendar.

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