The Sheer Raw Power of The Julie Ruin

Kathleen Hanna fronts The Julie Ruin on Jimmy Fallon's show, September 3.

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.

The Julie Ruin
Run Fast
TJR Records

As singer for the trailblazing ’90s group Bikini Kill, Kathleen Hanna was a driving force in the riot grrrl movement, which blended feminism and furious punk rock. After the band’s demise near the end of that decade, she moved on to Le Tigre, addressing similar concerns in a more dance-oriented format. Hanna has been out of the scene for nearly a decade, however, so her return to action in The Julie Ruin is cause for celebration.

Taking its name from her pseudonymous 1998 solo project as Julie Ruin, this high-octane quintet also features former Bikini Kill mate Kathi Wilcox on bass and Kenny Mellman of the drag cabaret duo Kiki and Herb on keyboards. But human tornado Hannah is the focal point. Howling and shouting in full attack mode, she hasn’t lost a bit of the fire that made her so compelling two decades ago. She continues to excel at fusing the personal and political in songs such as “Girls Like Us” and “The Kids in New York,” though you don’t need a lyric sheet to appreciate Run Fast. The sheer raw power of the music is reward enough.


Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

payment methods

We Recommend