Rogers launches into the conversation with a discussion of songwriting, asking Brownstein about her own process. “I do feel like I have to turn off that critical voice in my head when I’m writing my own music or writing anything that has to do with myself,” the Sleater-Kinney member reveals. The pair also discuss self-editing, with Rogers noting that she had struggled with song editing in ways she had not with other forms of writing.
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Brownstein notes that there is a fear of “precedent” that comes with all the albums after your debut, noting how exciting it must feel for Rogers to have just released her first full-length album. In terms of her band, Brownstein adds that there are people who really loved the shifted sound on S-K’s latest album, The Center Won’t Hold, while others had a “hard time with the assertion that we were willing to let go of tools and methodology that people had become very accustomed to within our band.”
Rogers cites Brownstein alongside Patti Smith, David Byrne, and Kim Gordon as her most formative influences. “All of those people, and you included, it feels like there’s not a filter in the way creativity can be expressed,” the 25-year-old says. “I’m really interested in that life as a holistic creator and what it looks like on the inside.”
The pair also bonded over recent stints in motorcycle school, which Rogers had done in particular before working on Heard It in a Past Life. For the NYU grad, it reminded her of school which she loved. She similarly compared working with new collaborators as a form of grad school, since she looked at each session as a learning experience.
At the end, Rogers asks Brownstein if there are moments when she thought her career was going too fast or too slow. “I just want to be happy,” the rocker responds. “I wanna connect with people. I want people to feel seen and heard and that they find something in my work that they relate to.”
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