Read In 2015 #31: Hunger Makes Me A Modern Girl, by Carrie Brownstein



"My favorite kind of musical experience is to feel afterward that your heart is filled up and transformed, like it is pumping a whole new kind of blood into your veins. This is what it is to be a fan: curious, open, desiring for connection, to feel like art has chosen you, claimed you as its witness."

Hunger Makes Me A Modern Girl, by Carrie Brownstein
Published: 2015 / Rating: 4/5 / Pages: 256

I have something of a problem with many modern memoirs. I can't handle the air of pretension and name-dropping on every page, the technique seems more like a vessel for these once-upon-a-time outcasts to "subtly" let us know that they've made it. Carrie Brownstein's memoir was truly a pleasure to read, as it was not, in any way, self-indulgent; it was a well-written, thoughtful, and raw novel.

I must admit I didn't know much about Sleater-Kinney as a band before reading Carrie's book. I was, of course, familiar with their back catalogue, as well as with her work on the show Portlandia, however, the extent of my knowledge was that they were a feminist punk band from the United States that took a decade off from recording and returned to music this year with their album No Cities To Love.

With her formative years filled with family turmoil (an anorexic mother, a father in the closet), then followed by multiple rejections from the music industry, Brownstein's story was a fascinating one to follow. Her determination to succeed saw her co-found one of the world's most influential rock bands, and it was such a delight to read all about how it happened. It had all the perfect elements of a music memoir: descriptions of the creative process, plenty of self-awareness, and reflections on the period in which she was living. I suppose I shouldn't have been surprised that Brownstein was a fantastic writer, but novel was written beautifully, and should appease all Sleater-Kinney fans.


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