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Sex and suicide
The lovely ladies of Suicide Girls take their show on the road, the Sex Workers Art Show Tour, and more
BY CARLY CARIOLI

Suicide Girls


The idea that female sexual empowerment goes hand in hand with stripping is not particularly new: in the pop world, Britney, Christina, and Lil’ Kim have been paying lip service to that rhetoric for years. What’s surprising is to see the idea put into action by the kinds of girls you used to find at a Bikini Kill show. Then again, when you consider that Bikini Kill founder (now Le Tigre frontwoman) Kathleen Hanna is a former stripper, the countercultural smut of the Suicide Girls seems an idea that was long overdue. (See our interview with founder Missy Suicide in "Performance.") The stars of the homonymous on-line bodega, which features tattoo’d and pierced lovelies baring all, have fashioned a DIY burlesque tour that hits the Call (401-751-2255) in Providence on Saturday, the Middle East (617-864-EAST) in Cambridge on Monday, and Pearl Street (413-584-7810) in Northampton on Tuesday.

But what’ll the Suicide Girls do after they’re retired? They could always join the Sex Workers Art Show Tour, the cavalcade of prostitutes, strippers, adult film starlets, phone sex operators, and, yes, Internet pin-ups whose inaugural jaunt last year sold out the now-shuttered Oni Gallery. Led by sex activist Annie Oakley, the SWAS features a cabaret of performance art, spoken word, video, music, and burlesque, with an eye to providing "a fuller portrayal of the complicated ways sex workers experience their jobs and their lives," from "celebrations of prostitutionа.а.а. to views from the darker side of the industry." It plays Sunday at Hollywood KTV (617-338-8283) in Boston’s Chinatown and Monday at AS220 (413-831-9327) in Providence.

The celebrated cable host, ad pitchman, and stand-up comic Henry Rollins probably didn’t intend any sexual entendre when he titled his latest spoken-word expedition the "Shock and Awe My Ass Tour." But if you’ve suffered the high-strung, muscle-bound former Black Flag frontman’s monologues over the past decade, you may have concluded that the punk-rock drill sergeant’s ass could use a good pounding. Rollins brings his Borscht Belt routine to the Berklee Performance Center (617-931-2000) in Boston on Friday, the State Theater (207-780-8265) in Portland on Tuesday, and the Webster Theater (860-525-5553) in Hartford on Wednesday.

Henry’s old pal Ian MacKaye is fervently denying the rumors that Fugazi have called it quits, though the Dischord Web site admits that the band are on indefinite hiatus. But fans of old-school Dischord post-punk can get their fix when class-of-’88 vets Lungfish arrive, supporting last year’s Love Is Love, at AS220 on Friday and at T.T. the Bear’s Place (617-492-BEAR) in Cambridge on Sunday. And for those who believe in Santa Claus, we have another Dirt McGirt sighting: the notoriously unstable hip-hop genius formerly known as Ol’ Dirty Bastard is booked into Pearl Street next Thursday, February 12.


Issue Date: February 6 - 12, 2004
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