• Immortal Day
  • darkness
  • darksites
  • Advertise here
  • vampires
  • Riot Grrl

    When most people hear the words “Do It Yourself”, the first thing that comes to mind is a home improvement project. They usually think of a man, usually in a tool belt, taking measurements around a dilapidated house, trying to envision an improvement on the structure that stands before him. “Do It Yourself”, in this context, seems to mean the improvement of something that already exists. But what does “Do It Yourself” mean in the world of music? The world certainly found out in the 1990s, when the movement known as “riot grrl” reached its fever pitch. “Riot grrl” was a form of music that promoted a new brand of feminism for a new generation of young teenage women.

    Spread through word-of-mouth and activist-like tactics, garage bands that were comprised of a large number of women spread different messages concerning such issues as body image, rape, discrimination, incest, sexism, and a score of other issues affecting young women today. However fresh the perspectives were and however new the method of spreading the message of feminism was, there were a great deal of influences from the past. Patti Smith, Yoko Ono, Joan Jett, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Aretha Franklin, Ma Rainey, Big in Japan, and countless other bands were often the inspiration for the multitude of “riot grrl” bands that emerged in the ’90s and that continue to make their music and strive to make their message of feminism and girl-empowerment heard.  As a result of this “riot grrl” movement, which was largely underground and contained within the world of independent record labels, a large number of fanzines were released.

    These fanzines were often nothing more than collages put together to send messages about topics such as homosexuality, eating disorders, vegetarianism, domestic violence, and other topics that the publishers of these fanzines thought were important to address. They provided an outlet for female thought where there had been none before the advent of these magazines. Touring for many of these “riot grrl” bands forced them to confront opposition to their pro-girl message. Though the standard concert found the guys in the mosh pit to the front of the stage and the girls farther back, the “riot grrl” bands asked that the boys in the mosh pit move back from the front of the stage so that they might clear a space for girls nearer to the front of the stage. Despite the simplicity of their request, they were barraged by a series of derogatory words towards women (though a good deal of the members of “riot grrl” bands were not female).

    They were deemed as “man-haters”, though they never denounced men in any way, shape, or form. They only sought to empower women, though apparently that seemed to threaten many of the men that attended their shows only to shout offensive words or tell them to take off their clothes during their set. Though they often encountered such animosity from male concert-goers, these “riot grrl” bands also played concerts during which dedicated female fans would be immersed in the music and cheer after every song that the band would play.

    Unfortunately, the “riot grrl” bands found themselves, around the year 1992, in the media spotlight. However, many of their ideas were skewed and magazines that had never interviewed any “riot grrl” band would start printing so-called-facts about them. No matter how much the bands tried to straighten out the misconceptions that were printed, the media would not allow them to have a voice. It would only concentrate on the outward appearance of the “riot grrl”, noting the fact that they often wrote derogatory words on different parts of their bodies and wore strange clothing. The media tried to portray them as young girls who only had shock value, and had no message behind their music and tactics. Because of this distortion of “riot grrl” due to the media, the genre of music has divided, though it continues to make a difference.

    While bands like the Spice Girls seem to continue the “riot grrl” genre with their “girl power” catchphrase, and tours like Lilith Fair supposedly offered “music by women, for women” (though there was often only one woman in each band), the old roots of the “riot grrl” bands live on. Old members of bands long separated are moving on to new projects, and old bands, such as Bratmobile (one of the “riot grrl” bands said to have been a pillar for the whole genre) are reuniting. Bratmobile reunited in 2000 and made two albums before their singer moved on to sing with another all-women band.  Though the members of old “riot grrl” bands may move on to new and different things, the impact of the genre is still felt in the present; females of varying ages still listen to the genre and some even form their own garage bands that embody many of the ideals that the first “riot grrls” had in mind.

    They wanted to empower women, and by playing their music for women, they wanted to encourage more women to pursue music just as they had. In the formation of these garage bands, it can be said that these wishes are fulfilling themselves, even though these bands may have stopped making music together years ago. “Riot grrl” music has more than made a musical impact; there are numerous references in pop culture, from movies to books to television. Though the original “riot grrl” music is years old, it still sends the message it first intended to send: self-empowerment.

    Trip Hop

    The one thing that all, or at least most, Trip Hop artists have in common, apart from their musical style, is that they all have the same hate for the name ‘Trip Hop.’ This has been called a phenomena, by other sources, but if your name went from something classy like the Bristol Sound, or […]


    Gothabilly music is actually a blend of words that refers to the mixture between the rockabilly music scene and the Gothic or Goth lifestyle. While many bands of the Gothabilly genre include darker themes ranging from the occult and vampires or vampirism, to horror and themes revolving around depression and violent behaviour, they are not […]

    Grunge Rock

    Grunge music originated in the 1980’s by a few different bands around the area of Seattle, Washington, and is a different style of alternative rock. It was inspired by a few different forms of metal and punk music, and is identified mostly by angry lyrics, many of which were directed at the general form of […]

    Glam Rock

    Glam Rock is also known as Glitter Rock, but by whom, I’ve no idea, and must herewith assume that this is in the UK, being as that most claim that Glam Rock is a mainly European musical movement. Glam Rock came in, as the hippies moved out, in the early ’70’s. Glam Rock was essentially […]


    Electronica is a term that refers to a large range of different electronic music that has been made for different uses, like dance, background or foreground music, and other such activities. But it is not made for dancing specifically, like electronic dance music. Electronica is an umbrella term that emerged in the early years of […]


    Psychobilly is a form of music that has been widely described as a blend of punk rock from the end of the 70’s and also rockabilly music from the American 1950’s scene. More often than not the lyrics in Psychobilly music are a comedic take on topics that are usually disapproved by general commercial music, […]

    Dark Wave

    Dark Wave was first used as a descriptive term for the early Goth rock beginnings, but before the term “Goth rock” was ever used outside of the UK. Dark Wave described darker, and gloomier post-punk, of the late 70’s, and New Wave, of the 80’s. For the French, it was Coldwave, and Synthpop, or Electrowave […]


    The DownTempo genre of music is often confused with Trance, or IDM, –Intelligent Dance Music, but does in fact have its own particular style. Unlike ambient, DownTempo does have a beat and groove to it. Trip Hop is closely compared to DownTempo or lumped in under the term, however DownTempo is usually slower than Trip […]

    Alternative Rock

    Alternative rock music emerged as a new genre in the 1980’s, and by the 90’s it was a hugely popular form of music. The actual term alternative came about in the 80’s, and it was used to try and categorise those bands who were inspired by punk rock but did not fit into the main […]

    College Radio

    College radio, which also carries the nicknames campus, student, or university radio, is a radio station run by students of a university or other type of educational school. Even though the terminology “college radio” incites the idea that it is broadcast on either AM or FM radio like other radio stations, this is not always […]

    Garage Rock

    Garage rock is a genre of music known for its more raw form of the rock music scene. It emerged into widespread popularity in America and Canada in 63, and stayed highly popular until about 67. In its beginning garage rock was not actually seen as a separate genre of music, and it was in […]


    Goth and punk rock spawned many subgenres when it was in full swing, and even while it was first emerging in the late 1970’s. One of the subgenres that was re-introduced while Goth rock was developing was Deathrock. One of the things that make distinguishing Deathrock from Goth rock so difficult, is because it overlaps […]


    Avant-Garde music is commonly referred too as experimental music, and the terms were actually coined by a composer named John Cage in the year 1955. It was created as a term to describe any and all music that challenged the accepted status or standing of what music was supposed to be. The term experimental has […]

    Punk Rock

    Punk rock music is a form of rock that formed as an anti-corporate genre in the mid 70s. Beginning its development throughout the US, UK, and Australia with bands like the Ramones, Sex Pistols and The Clash in the years 74 through 76, punk rock soon began spreading across the entire world by 1977. Bands […]

    Gothic Rock

    Gothic rock is an old genre that’s shared a few different names over the years, and started out with a few different origins as well. What we hear today, was not the same as what we heard then. Any old Goth can tell you, after he’s done claiming he’s Gother than you, that gothic rock […]


    Post-punk is an inner-directed and more experimental form of punk rock, though its roots are deep in the punk rock scene. The Genre developed in the late 70’s, riding on the heels of the outbreak of the punk rock genre that occurred in the middle of the 1970’s. Post-punk is accredited with having made the […]


    Futurepop is a music genre that blends a mixture of synthpop, electronic body music, and uplifting trance to create a unique form of electronic dance music. The actual term was created by two men, Stephan Groth of the band Apoptygma Berzerk,  and Ronan Harris from the band VNV Nation, when they were both trying to […]

    Gothic Doom

    Once the gothic metal scene was up off the ground and really rolling, bands started to get more popular inside the genre. Some bands went the way of symphonic metal, while others moved in the opposite direction instead and slowed downed, adding much more gloom into their style. This also meant that the typical “beauty […]

    New Wave

    New Wave was a music genre that was a form of rock music during the later years of the 70s up until the middle of the 80’s. Branching off of the punk rock scene as a hit towards the more popular music of the 70s, the new wave genre blended influences from multiple other genres […]

    Radio Darkness is proudly powered by WordPress and ChaoticSoul (by Bryan Veloso)
    Entries (RSS) and Comments (RSS).