Softcult: “In order for the world to change, there has to be some change within yourself”

If Mercedes Arn-Horn has to hype herself up for something, she’ll watch The Punk Singer. The 2013 documentary traces the life and career of Kathleen Hanna, legendary frontwoman of Bikini Kill and Le Tigre, documenting her journey from performance poet to riot grrrl firebrand and the personal turmoils in between. Mercedes first watched the film when she was 20, having never heard of the riot grrrl movement before – indeed, she was only a child when Bikini Kill and their peers were confronting the oppressive misogyny of the music industry in the 1990s. The world she discovered, of empowered women making noise and fighting for inclusivity within punk, set her on fire. “We’re trying to bring about another wave of riot grrrl,” Mercedes says of her band, Softcult, sitting shoulder to s...

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