In its two seasons on the air, Portlandia has managed to become one of the most relevant 30-minute sketch comedy shows on television thanks to its multifaceted stars Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein. The duo has crept their way into hearts by reinventing scenarios that hit close to home, but from the sidewalks of Oregon's utopic City of Roses, and often with nods to rock & roll.
Armisen, a current Saturday Night Live cast member, drummed in the 1990s with Trenchmouth, and Brownstein, an unforeseen match made in heaven to Armisen's comedic delivery, slayed with her guitar in Sleater-Kinney before the band went on indefinite hiatus in 2006, and currently plays with indie outfit Wild Flag. The post-punk audiophiles have exercised their musical upbringings into several sketches, and locked in several guest spots from big name talent, namely Eddie Vedder, Modest Mouse's Isaac Brock, former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr, Sex Pistols’ Steve Jones, St. Vincent, Joanna Newsom and Fleet Foxes' Robin Pecknold in Season Two alone. The previous season saw cameos from members of The Decemberists, Shins frontman James Mercer, Aimee Mann and Sarah MacLachlan, the latter two who lampooned the struggling music business playing musicians-turned-cleaning lady and gardener, respectively.
In the following slides, Rolling Stone explains the 10 top music-inspired moments from Season Two of Portlandia.
By Charley Rogulewski