Allow Chicana punk and feminist icon Alice Bag to remind the world: Clothes don’t mean consent, you stupid fuck! The lead single from the LA punk scene progenitor’s forthcoming album doesn’t circumvent the issue, and its sticky bubblegum charm can’t even belie its bite. To the disgust and amazement of anyone with common sense,“No Means No” is, unfortunately, a rule that still bears repeating.
The track debuted last week in conjunction with the announcement that the whole shebang would be delivered June 24 via storied New Jersey imprint Don Giovanni. Despite decades of music-making in a slew of bands post-Bags, it’ll be her first studio full-length — ever.
It almost feels like a tired trope, the way “No Means No” narrates the tale of one man’s unthinking entitlement and the resulting sexual violence. That sad familiarity is a message in itself — in fact, in the U.S., someone is sexually assaulted every 107 seconds. In Bag’s story, though, one statistic is ultimately defied by a degree of justice for the character that most real-life survivors don’t see.
Forever the activist, Bag donated sales of all album pre-orders on the day of its release to a sexual violence education and survivor support campaign led by the feminist organization Peace Over Violence. That window’s closed now, but you can still donate anytime.
Alice Bag’s self-titled album will be out June 24 on Don Giovanni.