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Bikini Kill by Jessica Gordon-Wrench from Stool Pigeon Issue 40 p.60

“Formed in Olympia, Washington in 1990 by vocalist Kathleen Hanna, drummer Tobi Vail, guitarist Billy Karren and bassist Kathi Wilcox, they spent the next seven years fostering a feminist community via the punk scene. ”

“Vail draws parallels between punk rock and folk: “My punk aesthetic is pretty much a folk aesthetic. I like singers who can sing and musicians who excel at their instruments, but I also like the sound of people’s voices who are not ‘singers’ and don’t believe that great musicians are the only good songwriters.”

“Despite their informed and highly politicised stance, both refute the idea that Bikini Kill were strictly activists. “I didn’t identify as an activist or an artist during Bikini Kill,” says Vail. “I thought of myself as a punk rock feminist that was creating counter-hegemonic culture. The band pretty much was our contribution to society… I wouldn’t call that activism, I would call that culture — a culture of resistance. I would call Riot Grrrl cultural activism.”

Vail: “Feminism is not dead. People have been saying it’s dead since the eighties. Maybe they want it to die. But saying that something is dead doesn’t kill it.”

Read the whole interview here:

http://www.thestoolpigeon.co.uk/features/interview-bikini-kill.html

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