Formed in 1994 in the city of Olympia, Washington, under the influence of riot grrrl, a movement that adheres to visceral rock and based on feminist ideals and whose main icons were the Bikini Kill group, Sleater-Kinney initially had Carrie in its formation Brownstein (vocals, guitar), Corin Tucker (guitar, vocals) and Lora McFarlane (drums). McFarlane left the band in 1996, after the release of the second album, Call the Doctor, by Chainsaw Records, the same label that had released in 1995 the band's debut album of the same name.
With Janet Weiss taking over the drums, Sleater-Kinney released their third album, Dig Me Out, in 1997 on the Kill Rock Stars label. Following were the albums The Hot Rock (1999), All Hands on the Bad One (2000) and One Beat (2002).
In August 2019, the band released the album The Center Won't Hold, produced by St. Vincent. A month earlier, drummer Janet Weiss left the band. On the tour of this work, drummer Angie Boylan joined the group.