Three people: guitar, bass, drums. Songs that were loud, fast, sincere, fun. Sleater Kinney was the best rock-n-roll band since Husker Du.
Before they turned me on with "I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone," I had listened to all those K groups back in the day when any girls with guitars were immediately called grrls. Ah, Bikini Kill and Mecca Normal and Bratmobile and Lois! I listened to all that, admittedly because they were women. I was so tired of an indie rock scene that relegated righteous women like Kim and Kim and Georgia and Laura to bass players, one-track-per-album sexy sirens, and even worse, wives. Indie rock, for all its plusses, has always been ten times more misogynistic than its alternate reality, Top 40, where at least a girl could make an easy fortune shaking her thing. Indie rock was a world so starved for women that Kim Deal was considered attractive.
I bought "Dig Me Out" in '96 and it blew me away. Listen to it now, or listen to "The Woods." You don't hear a girl (or grrl) group. You hear a great band. I'm afraid that now, in this day where bands more resemble communes with 8-10 co-ed members with androgynous haircuts (who still rely on a man to be the "genius" behind the sound) than three friends in a van, we will miss you more than ever.
Long live rock-n-roll! Sleater-Kinney, I,for one, will miss your next album, which was guaranteed to be just as good as your first album or your last album. You will always be the best band that people forget about when making their silly little lists.