“We are Bikini Kill and we want revolution girl-style now". Pioneers of the Riot Grrl movement, Bikini Kill formed in 1990 in Olympia, Washington. At their shows, they encouraged a female-centric environment, usually tipped off with a "Girls to the front!", since men had dominated the hardcore pit scene for decades. Kathleen Hanna would openly discuss sexual assault and create a safe space for women after shows, giving them a chance to find support systems. They fought against oppressive body and sexual politics - Hanna would go on stage with just a bra, "slut" written on her stomach, because if a man could go on stage shirtless, why couldn't she? Bikini Kill was also very close to the Seattle grunge scene - "Smells Like Teen Spirit" was named from a sharpie note Kathleen Hanna had left drunkenly on Kurt Cobain's apartment wall.
Bikini Kill was the first band that made me feel alive. Being around 14 years old, holding a Kill Rock Stars catalogue in search of new music that wasn't on the radio. A time of questioning everything in my life -sexuality, politics, religion, music- Bikini Kill filled the void of angsty teenage rage.
They began a reunion tour last year, one show of which I was lucky enough to see, and this year, they have added a few more cities to play. They don't feel it's necessary to shout "girls to the front!" any more because the girls are already there. -Clip : "Capri Pants"-
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