Well this one is just common sense. This week, we are pairing Bikini Kill’s debut, self titled EP alongside Jessica Hopper’s THE FIRST COLLECTION OF CRITICISM BY A LIVING FEMALE ROCK CRITIC.
Jessica Hopper was the teenage face of Riot Grrrl, thanks to a 1992 Newsweek article. In her collection, Hopper writes, “I too had a hunger for music that spoke a language I was just starting to decipher . . . I was lucky I was met at the door with things like the Bikini Kill demo . . . It took seeing Babes in Toyland and Bikini Kill to truly throw on the lights, to show me that there was more than one place, one role, for women to occupy, and that our participation was important and vital – it was YOU MATTER writ large.” (19-20).
Known for pioneering the Riot Grrrl movement in the early 1990s Pacific Northwest, Bikini Kill released the Ian MacKaye (of Fugazi and Minor Threat) produced, Bikini Kill EP originally through the Kill Rock Stars label. This 20th anniversary reissue includes new liner notes, photos, excerpts from Bikini Kill’s zines, and more.
With the Riot Grrrl insurgence by artists like Pussy Riot and Lizzo, it is crucial to hear where the movement started and even more so to hear where it goes. Hopper, poignant but encouraging in the future of punk music, reminds readers, “We deserve better songs than any boy will ever write about us” (20).