Home Read Classic Album Reviews: Bikini Kill | The Singles / Julie Ruin |...

Classic Album Reviews: Bikini Kill | The Singles / Julie Ruin | Julie Ruin

Kathleen Hanna shuts down her riot-grrrl group — and introduces a new alter-ego.

This came out in 1999 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):


One step forward, one look back.

That’s what you get on these CDs from Olympia’s Kathleen Hanna and her riot grrrl group Bikini Kill, who broke up in 1998. For their part, BK go out with a bang — plus a crash, squeal and wallop — on this collection of nine mid-’90s tunes, including three collaborations with Runaways role model Joan Jett. If you’ve never heard the band’s lo-fi metal-punk blasts or Hanna’s bratty, haranguing delivery, you couldn’t find a better place to start. Unless you start with Hanna’s spectacular self-titled Julie Ruin solo outing. Along with the garage-punk you expect, Hanna pulls some new rabbits out of her hat — intimate keyboard trinkets, digital hardcore and sweet ’n’ sour synth-pop. Remarkable — especially for a disc she recorded by herself in her apartment.