Political Pop

Le Tigre's fun, feminist electronica


“Dance-y, garage-y electronic feminist pop. ” That’s how Johanna Fateman describes Le Tigre, a lesbian band bent on creating happy electronica for a politically progressive populous.

Formed about six years ago by Fateman and Kathleen Hanna — who were later joined by J.D. Samson — Le Tigre is an offshoot of the ’90s “riot grrl ” punk movement. The women created the group, says Fateman, “to make enjoyable pop music for feminists and queers. ”

Fateman describes the group’s music more in line with dance-punk alternative rapper Peaches than the commercial pop-punk of Avril Lavigne. “Lavigne is sort of trangsressive for a younger audience not exposed to the alternatives, I guess. I understand it as a starting point for young girlsÂ…showing women controlling their own destiny. It’s a welcome contrast to the rise of ultra-misogynistic metal hip hop bands. ”


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Le Tigre

Le Tigre is one of a growing group of alt-pop political acts under the Bands Against Bush umbrella. This newly formed coalition, which will become more active next year, is hosting a register-to-vote drive, along with the antiwar group Not In Our Name, during Le Tigre’s current tour.

“[President George W. Bush] has done so many bad things domestically and internationally that we gotta get him out of the White House next year, ” says Fateman. Le Tigre hopes to further mobilize anti-Bush political action through the release of its third album next spring. Say Fateman: “We’re still writing songs for the album, but what we’ve written so far alludes to the troubled time we’re living in, post-9/11 and an era of unilateralism. ”

Fateman is excited about the upcoming album, which is expected to feature a couple of songs produced by Ric Ocasek, lead singer of the ’80s pop group The Cars. Le Tigre will test drive some of the new material this weekend at the 9:30 Club.

Le Tigre performs Sunday, November 23 at the 9:30 Club, 815 V Street NW. Tickets are $14. Visit www.930.com or call 202-265-0930.

Doug Rule is a theater critic and contributing editor for Metro Weekly.

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