Riot Grrrl Playlist: Smash Patriarchy and Subvert!

By: Ralka Skjerseth |

Riot Grrrl is a third wave feminist movement that first emerged from the alternative and punk music scene in the 1990s. The movement started in 1991, when a group of women from Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington held a meeting to discuss how to eradicate sexism in the punk music scene. The most renowned pioneer of this movement is Kathleen Hanna from the band Bikini KIll. Bands that are involved in the Riot Grrrl movement, such as Heavens to Betsy, Bratmobile, and Bikini Kill, has contributed a lot in fighting sexism in the punk scene and reinforcing the DIY ethics. The Riot Grrrl movement also started off with producing zines— a DIY publication with limited distribution. In the hands of the Riot Grrrl movement, zine is a crucial medium to discuss about topics that have the tendency to be considered as tabo, such as sexual violence, racism, and sexuality. The zine subculture facilitates women to form connections with fellow women with similar experiences. 

This playlist unravels the bands that are strongly associated with the Riot Grrrl scene. Enjoy!


Sleater-Kinney – I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone

Babes in Toyland – Sweet ‘69

Bratmobile – Gimme Brains

Bikini Kill – Rebel Girl

L7 – Pretend We’re Dead

Le Tigre – Deceptacon

Excuse 17 – I’d Rather Eat Glass

Lunachicks – Less Teeth More Tits

Heavens to Betsy – Complicated

Veruca Salt – Volcano Girls

Hole – Violet

7 Year Bitch – The Scratch

The Julie Ruin – Just My Kind

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