Bikini Kill

The C.D. Version of the First Two Records (Kill Rock Stars ’94) Rating: C+
This was my first (and hopefully last) introduction to the confusing world of Bikini Kill, who are “highly respected” riot grrrls despite some questionable views. Plus, their amateurish sound offers tuneless noise but without any killer riffs, and their banshee vocals generally grate. On the unlistenable “Thurston Hearts The Who,” a pal from Bratmobile reads from a review that calls Bikini Kill “activists, not musicians.” Based on the evidence here I’d have to agree, except that lines like “eat meat, hate blacks, beat your fucking wife; it’s all the same thing” make me wonder what exactly their message is. I mean, I eat meat, but I don’t hate blacks and I sure don’t beat my fucking wife, and I’m pretty damn sure that they’re not the same thing. On another song, some guy moron says “most of ‘em ask for it,” leaving little doubt what “it” is. Now, I’m all for girl power (if not necessarily the fake Spice Girl kind), but do they genuinely think that most guys feel like that? There are a few solid songs here, one of which is appropriately titled “Suck My Left One,” but the band fails to hold my interest long enough for me to wait around for ‘em. With their sound often linked to Fugazi, and L7 being another obvious comparison, to my mind Bikini Kill are but a pale imitation of both of those fine bands.

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