Video: Quasi – “Queen of Ears”
Directed by Patrick Stanton. From Breaking the Balls of History, out February 10 on Sub Pop.
A tibial plateau fracture is no fucking joke. It’s not like a regular broken bone where you just get it set, wear a cast for a few weeks, and then you’re good. Nope, a TPF typically requires multiple surgeries and months or years of rehab, and even after all of that you may never be the same again. Many people never regain full range of motion and some people are unable to walk at all.
Back in August 2019, the month after she announced she was leaving Sleater-Kinney, powerhouse drummer Janet Weiss was in a bad car accident that broke her left collar bone and her right tibia. At the time she thought her recovery would take “about 12 weeks.” They tell you that in the hospital so you don’t lose hope. In reality, those first 12 to 16 weeks are the time you’re required to stay off the broken leg completely. Put no weight on it at all so the bone can begin to heal. No walking. Completely non-weightbearing. You’d be surprised how quickly muscles atrophy when you don’t use them. After three months, you basically need to learn to walk again. It’s not easy. It’s super painful. And it takes a long time.
Two years after the accident, in August 2021 Weiss considered herself “about 80% back.” Her strength and balance were still “a work in progress” as well as her coordination and stamina. Nevertheless she was practicing daily and was “thrilled to be gaining the ability to translate the explosive drum parts [she] hear[s] in [her] head to the kit.”
And now, a little more than a year after that, we get to hear the outcome of all her hard work. It’s great to see her back in action. Weiss and her Quasi compatriot Sam Coomes recorded Breaking the Balls of History in five days. It’s their tenth album so they know what they’re doing. “When you’re younger and in a band, you make records because that’s what you do,” Coomes said. “But this time, the whole thing felt purposeful in a way that was unique to the circumstances.”
Life is short and sometimes it sucks. We should all be grateful that artists like Janet Weiss and Sam Coomes are putting in the effort to make all our lives a little better.
We first covered Quasi 21 years ago: Love, American Style by Kristy Eldredge.