Bikini Kill, influential leaders of the feminist punk movement Riot grrrl, reunited Sunday night to perform their 1993 track “Tammy Rae,” marking their first live performance in two decades.
Three of the band’s four members – singer-guitarist Kathleen Hanna, bassist Kathi Wilcox, drummer Tobi Vail – surprised the audience at New York City’s The Kitchen, who’d gathered for the a three-night event promoting a new 33 1/3 book about the Raincoats’ self-titled 1979 album. Pitchfork reported that Raincoats collaborator Shirley O’Loughlin curated the evening’s events.
During their initial run, Bikini Kill released three studio albums – 1991’s Revolution Girl Style Now!, 1993’s Pussy Whipped and 1996’s Reject All American – along with the 1998 compilation, The Singles. All of the band members moved forward to other musical projects, with Hanna notably forming electro-clash act Le Tigre and alt-punk outfit the Julie Ruin, the latter featuring Wilcox.
Bikini Kill have released two reissues in recent years: their 1993 split LP with Huggy Bear, Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah, in 2014, and a revamped version of early demo Revolution Girl Style Now the following year.