Epic battle of rock ladies to be waged Oct. 26



This week, on the same day, both ethereal rock fairy St. Vincent and the newly-formed Sleater-Kinney/Helium/Minders supergroup Wild Flag released fantastic albums. Besides sharing CD release dates, the two acts are also both playing New Orleans in October — on the same night (the 26th, at Tipitina's and One Eyed Jacks, respectively).

New Orleans seems to suffer from "if it rains, it pours" syndrome of the highest order — not just with actual rain, but with lengthy cultural dry spells truncated by a sudden flood of art, music and entertainment events (I've previously discussed the anxiety this causes). The St. Vincent/Wild Flag dilemma is the latest example of the inevitable schedule overlap that happens in these busy times. I know I'm seeing Wild Flag — I've seen St. Vincent twice and never saw Sleater-Kinney when they were together, and this is the next best thing. Which one are you seeing?

Both acts released narrative-style music videos recently: In St. Vincent's tragicomic clip for Strange Mercy single "Cruel," a young woman is trapped in a domestic arrangement by a creepy family and it slowly kills her (literally); Wild Flag's video for their self-titled debut's lead single "Romance" (directed by comedian Tom Scharpling) depicts the band as masked nine-to-fivers cruising around in a fuchsia Volvo and creating mischief during a lunch break.

Wild Flag - Romance from Merge Records on Vimeo.

And — just because — a clip from Portlandia, the IFC series starring current Wild Flag lead singer/former Sleater-Kinney guitarist Carrie Brownstein, who also worked on NPR's All Songs Considered for a few years in her post S-K career. She has the coolest life ever, right?

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