In the late 90s and early 2000s, it seemed that a number of new bands were discovering the wonders of early-80s post punk and electro-pop. Yet Le Tigre brought in some of their own brand of retro-80s dance-punk, simply by adding something of the early 90s riot grrrl scene to the proceedings, as well as a hint of Japanese pop flavourings as well. They come by the former pretty honestly of course, given that frontwoman Kathleen Hanna’s earlier outfit Bikini Kill was a part of that influential 90s scene.
I really like the idea of the riot grrl movement, because it places women in contexts where they have been mostly tolerated and rarely celebrated in the mainstream. One such context would be one of rocking out, playing their instruments, and going beyond the idea of woman-as-eyecandy while on stage.
But, what I appreciate even more is the idea of bringing in the ferocity of punk to music that is clearly designed to be enjoyed by a dance audience. And in this song, I love that when you really strip everything back, you’ve got an insistant central riff and a droning chord structure that is as sexy as any John Lee Hooker stomp. Take away the synths, and I’m pretty sure you’ll find the Blues.
Despite a few line-up changes, Le Tigre are a going concern. Check them out on the Le Tigre MySpace Page.