outlander, series premiere
music friday: 1957 edition

throw me for a loop: sleater-kinney, august 7, 1998

Sixteen years ago today, I saw Sleater-Kinney live for the first time (I eventually saw them 12 times). It was the first tour with Janet on drums … she had joined the band for their third album, Dig Me Out, which was the album that first won me over. We were all a lot younger then, of course … I was 45, Janet was 32, Corin was 25, and Carrie Brownstein, the most famous of them as I write this in 2014, was only 23 (she looks at least that young in the video below). The show was at the Great American Music Hall. Opening acts were The Rondelles and Deerhoof. Here was the setlist:

  • Heart Factory
  • Dig Me Out
  • Memorize Yr Lines
  • Call the Doctor
  • Banned from the End of the World
  • Turn It On
  • By the Time You're 25
  • I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone
  • One More Hour
  • The End of You
  • God is a Number
  • Little Babies
  • Get Up
  • Words & Guitar
  • Encores: Good Things, Be Yr Mama, Little Mouth

So, “Heart Factory” was the first song I ever heard S-K play live. Here’s a video of them doing that song, from around the time I saw them:

We're manufacturing hearts
We've got the perfect thing
The word on the street
We've got the new love machine
Heart with and on/off switch and a remote control
Now you can program how you feel before you walk out the door

Fucks me up
I'm not just made of parts
And you can break right through
This box you put me into

Well you can leave 'em hot and you can leave 'em cold
And you can give 'em what you want and you can get up and go
And you can take your heart out and you can put it back in
I think we found the way to put the fun back in sin

Fucks me up
I'm not just made of parts
And you can break right through
This box you put me into

It's not like an organ more like a valentine
It's cherry cherry red and it beats on time
We're trying to reduce the heart on heart crime
You bring your heart to us we'll get it purified

Fucks me up
I'm not just made of parts
And you can break right through
This box you put me into

What are you waiting for?

Fucks me up
I'm not just made of parts
And you can break right through
This box you put me into

The last time I saw them, in 2006, they sang four of the songs they had done that first night: “Get Up”, “Good Things”, “Turn It On”, and “Little Mouth”. “Little Mouth”, in fact, was the last song I ever saw them play (barring a reunion). “Good Things ended the regular set, and it was the appropriate end … why do good things never want to stay, indeed. In their final concert, “Good Things” led off the final encores, followed by “Turn It On” and “One More Hour”, which I had missed in my last show. That’s probably for the best … I would have fallen apart. It’s a song about when Carrie and Corin broke up, long ago:

In one more hour
I will be gone
In one more hour
I'll leave this room
The dress you wore
The pretty shoes
Are things i left
Behind for you

Oh, you've got the darkest eyes

Oh, you've got the darkest eyes

I needed it
(I know it's so hard for you to let it go)

If you could talk
What would you say
For you things were
Just night and day
Take off the dress
Take off the face
I'll hold you close
Before i leave

Oh, you've got the darkest eyes

Oh, you've got the darkest eyes

I needed it
(I know it's so hard for you to let it go
I know it's so hard for you to
Say goodbye
I know you need a little more time)

Don't say another word
About the other girl

Don't say another word
About the other girl

I needed it
(I know it's so hard for you to let it go)

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