It’s Friday night and the streets of Glasgow are being taken over by angry chants and coordinating fashions. No, not for the football, but for the long-awaited return of punk. The floors of Glasgow’s O2 slowly fill up with dusted-off leather jackets, tiny skirts paired with massive boots, and hairstyles that defy gravity, in anticipation of the revival of feminist punk pioneers Bikini Kill. 

In the 90s, Bikini Kill was at the forefront of the riot grrrl music scene, highlighting female struggles through unapologetic rage. Three decades later, the punk movement may have changed a little, but from the passion in their performance, it’s clear Bikini Kill never got the message. 

The evening starts with a somewhat contrasting performance from experimental performer R.AGGS whose undeniable talent and inescapable enjoyment bring a wholesome smile to every punk in the room. When Bikini Kill take to the stage, the style of the smile might change slightly but the width never does. Comfortable with their instruments and even more comfortable with their stage, the combined efforts of each individual member creates an intimidatingly cool dynamic.  Lead Singer Kathleen Hanna overwhelms the stage in her characteristically bright and unusual fashion, bassist Kathi Wilcox is chic and impassive, and drummer Tobi Vali appears immovably apathetic as emphasized by her American flag sunglasses that never come off. Though missing guitarist Billy Karen leaves a noticeable absence, touring guitarist Sara Landeau is more than capable of sharing in the angst. The combined effort of each member creates the hopeful impression that an angry woman is powerful but four of them are a full-on movement. 

As the night progresses the band delivers hit after hit, throwing out favourites from Pussy Whipped and Reject All American, as well as their demo Revolution Girl Style Now. Each song demands commitment and power, something  which they consistently deliver – a feat made even more impressive as they switch around their instruments throughout the night. Alongside the blood-pumping music, the performance is enhanced by wild dancing, calls to revolution, and lamentations of British hot dogs. Their wit and presentation effortlessly elevate the performance, even if it is slightly dampened by an ill-advised attack on a certain reviewer’s favourite television show. 

As the world continues to delve into more and more chaos, it feels as though music ought to join it. Thankfully, punk bands like Bikini Kill are still around to do so. Despite their time away from the music scene, they have proven themselves to be just as loud and angry as we need to be. Their spirited performance and unyielding call for revolution prove exactly why every girl should have a rebel girl best friend.